The Molly Stark State Park, located in Wilmington, Vermont, is a wooded park facility situated in the southwestern part of the state near the Green Mountain National Forest. The beautiful, natural scenery will give any RVer a feeling of relaxation and solitude tied together the comforts and amenities of a state park.
The park, named after Molly Stark, honors the strength and determination of one of the most independent and stoic women during the Revolutionary War. Molly, the wife to Revolutionary War General John Stark, created a name for herself during a time when women didn’t have a unique voice. Molly raised and educated 11 children, and participated in the war efforts by gathering a militia and turning her barn into a hospital that cared for soldiers on both sides of the war. Molly did more than defy the traditional roles of a woman. She helped the American success at the Battle of Bennington, and she became one of Vermont and New Hampshire’s most influential women of all times.
The park also has ties to the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). The CCC was an organization created to employ single, unemployed men during the Great Depression. The CCC built a roadside picnic area where the park stands today, and eventually, the two cities that owned the land where the picnic area sat gave 100 acres of the property to the state of Vermont. That property combined with the 48 acres that Olga Haslund, a Wilmington resident, provided the state makes up what is now Molly Stark State Park.
The deeply rooted history of the park combined with Vermont’s natural surroundings makes the park a destination worth visiting time and again.
Molly Stark State Park is a seasonally-operated facility located in the southwest corner of Vermont. The park is located 166 miles south of Burlington, Vermont and passes through the famous Molly Stark Byway.
From Albany, New York, the park is 65 miles northeast.
Vermont state parks charge a daily admission fee. The fees vary depending on the age of the visitor. The fees help support the day-to-day operations of the park and significantly improve the overall maintenance of each park facility.
The Molly Stark campground is a seasonally operated, two-looped campground. Each campsite fits RVs and trailers from 20 to 28 feet with one site accommodating equipment up to 34 feet in length. Although the sites don’t have hookups, the campground offers guests plenty of amenities to make their stay comfortable. The campground has ice and firewood sales, modern restrooms and shower facilities, hydrants, a dump station, and a trash and recycling center. Because pets are restricted to the campground, a large dog walking area provides space for your leashed, four-legged friend to play. Please respect others and silence noise-making equipment, including generators, between the hours of 10:00 pm through 7:00 am.
Bring your hiking gear and spend your day the way nature intended you to spend it: outside. Molly Stark State Park has one trail that takes hikers to the water tower located at the summit of Mt. Olga. The one and a half-mile hike is a loop that brings guests to the fire tower. The steel fire tower was moved from Townshend State Park to Molly Stark State Park in 1955, and the tower now serves as the park’s scenic point of interest. The hike is a moderate-level difficulty hike, and generally takes hikers one and a half hours to complete. Hikers can access the trail from the campground. The Mt. Olga Trail is a foot-only trail.
Whether you are looking for a small family picnic, or you’d like to organize a larger get-together, the park offers two picnic areas for park guests. The reservable pavilion is an open-air shelter with electrical hookups that accommodates up to sixty guests. The pavilion provides close access to hiking and horseshoes, and is located in a more private area of the park. Reservation fees vary, depending on the day. The free picnic area is located near the horseshoe pits, volleyball court, and the campground. The first-come, first served area is perfect for a small lunch outside and is close to restrooms and the park office.
During the warmer months, before the snow falls, Molly Stark State Park visitors can drive eleven miles south to the Mount Snow resort. When the resort isn’t open for skiing, the Bluebird Express gondola shuttles guests to the summit of Mount Snow. The panoramic views atop the peak of Mount Monadnock, Mount Washington, and the Somerset Reservoir are spectacular and unforgettable. If you love the feeling of being on top of the world, there is no need to rush to the base of the peak. Stay for a little while longer and enjoy the food and beverages at the Bullwheel, a restaurant with a view!
If the history of Vermont or the famous people of Vermont interest you, then pack the family into the RV and stroll the historic Molly Stark Byway. The Byway takes visitors along historic villages, lowland valleys, through Green Mountain National Forest, and ends near the Bennington Battle Monument and the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center. The byway, funded by a Federal Highway Administration grant, has eight different stops, called obelisks, located along the route. These obelisks, or informational pillars, supply visitors with information about the history of the area. The ride will be entertaining and informative for the entire family, so it’s an adventure you won’t want to miss.
During the winter, the Mt. Olga trail turns into a winter recreation trail for snowshoers. If the one and a half-mile gravel loop isn’t a long enough path, there are more trails located close by that provide snowshoers with access to more winter pathways. The Hogback Mountain Conservation Area is only a mile away from Molly Stark State Park and has many low-impact, multi-use trails, perfect for snowshoeing. The Conservation Area is also home to educational programs, and special activities year-round. Plan to snowshoe and then see what other adventures you can have!
Mount Snow offers more than just skiing and snowboarding during the winter months. For a fun, family activity, bring the crew to the mountain for snow tubing. The magic carpet pulls tubers and tubes easily and effortlessly to the top of the hill. Once up top, tubers can choose from one of eight lanes to race their friends and family to the base of the mountain. Since getting to the top is easy, tubers can repeatedly plunge, trying a new lane each time. Contact Mount Snow for hours of operations and more information about snow tubing.