Smugglers Notch State Park


With 1,000-foot cliffs looming on either side, early American smugglers made their way through this notch in the mountains on their way to Montreal. This Canadian city was the closest market for Vermont farm products, but President Jefferson ordered an embargo on trade with Canada. Rather than greatly increasing shipping costs or preventing shipping altogether, people decided to carry on their trade illegally, using this convenient natural highway through the rock. Over the years, the notch continued to see furtive activity. Fugitive slaves made their way to the international border, then liquor was smuggled in from Canada during Prohibition. Today visitors enjoy hiking the numerous trails surrounding the campground. Situated within the Mt. Mansfield State Forest, this park boasts green rolling vistas etched by rock outcroppings. On hikes through rocky areas, keep an eye out for the alpine plant life that thrives in the damp, sometimes cold environment. Many of these species are endangered and live nowhere else in the state. The park offers tent and RV sites in a spaciously laid out area. Lean-tos also offer shelter. Handicapped-accessible sites are available. One restroom equipped with showers is wheelchair-accessible. Reservations are recommended for all campsites. Check with the park for a schedule of naturalist programs. Children enjoy a centrally located playground. Vermont state parks host an annual arts and entertainment festival, so call ahead to see whether there will be an event held here. South of the campground, on the way to Montpelier, ice cream aficionados find the Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream Factory a tasty stop. Pets: Leashed pets are permitted with some restrictions. Proof of current rabies vaccination is required upon check-in. Fees and reservations: There is a nominal park entrance fee per person. For information on reservations, call 800-837-6667. Reservations are taken between January 1 and the end of the park season. Smugglers Notch State Park is open between mid-May and Columbus Day.


6443 Mountain Rd
Stowe, VT 05672


44.53263300, -72.78579700
Visit Website
(802) 253-4014

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