VT-Townshend State Park


Active Member
Jul 14, 2013
My wife and I were looking to try out our N2U Rockwood Premier 1904 before we take it on a couple of trips in succession next week. This is our first pup, and we are new to towing...also our two dogs are new to camping and we have been trying to get them ready by camping in the driveway. But a one-nighter close to home was in order. I was skeptical that we would find a spot on a Saturday night in July, but DW was persistent, and found two vacant sites at Townshend State Park, about 30 minutes northwest of Brattleboro. (A plug here for the VT State Park mobile app for Apple devices! Much easier to use, IMO, than the VT State Park website.)

After a quick packing of gear and dogs, we were off on our journey. We almost forgot the rabies vaccination papers for the pups...important to have those in the TV at all times, I think. The ride to Townshend was beautiful once we left Brattleboro and headed up Rt. 30 through Newfane and Dummerston. Not many places to stop for supplies along the way, but we did find a market in Newfane to grab some extra drinking water and a coffee.

The GPS brought us over the Townshend dam on a single lane metal bridge. Nothing like driving on the edge of a precipice on my first ride towing a camper with my 1985 Chevy c20! Once you cross the dam, you enter state forest territory on dirt roads. We passed a covered bridge off which hung a rope swing, and there were quite a few swimmers, tube enthusiasts, and swimmers in the river. A little further up was the entrance to Townshend State Park.

I quickly and inadvertently passed Site 2, which was to have been our site for the evening. Pat, one of the two rangers, came out to greet us and try to assist us with backing up to Site 2. Well, a fine gesture, but there was no way this newbie was able to back up his camper successfully, no matter how much instruction Pat and my DW were offering me. (Note to self: practice backing up the camper somewhere far from camp rangers, your spouse, dogs, and bemused campers enjoying some free Saturday afternoon entertainment.)

At that point, DW reminded me of the second vacant site, a "drive through" site. BINGO! Just my kinda site!!! We pulled into Site 20 around 4:30, and promptly noticed how quiet the campground was, even though most campers were hanging around at their sites. Lovely.

The campground is small, about 30 sites. We noticed that we were one of only two or three PUPs at the campground, the rest of the campers being tenters. There were no hookups (but no problem, we had planned to dry camp and brought water with us). The sites were not overly private, as the campground is small, but all of our neighbors were friendly and considerate.

I was pleased to find that the site was an affordable $20 per night for non-residents and our two dogs. We bought two bunches of firewood for $4 a bunch, and it was excellent dried hardwoods. They even had a wheelbarrow available for campers to transport the wood to their sites. Convenient and thoughtful.

The nearby facilities were clean and well-lit, including hot showers for $$ (can't say how much, as we didn't use them). After a short hike on the Bald Mountain trail (a 1.7 mile hike each way), we were getting hungry and decided to head back to site 20 to light our fire and cook dinner.

The sites themselves are quite level, and many (maybe all?) have both a fire ring and a brick fireplace....we both wished we had prepared for wood cooking, but I got a chance to use the RVQ Grill, which had never once been used in this 2011 camper.

While using the facilities after dinner, I noticed an announcement for live music each Saturday night at the Rangers shack. people are invited to bring an instrument and play acoustic music. One of the rangers played guitar and was the organizer. I took the dogs for a walk to see some music, and it really was a lovely early evening hanging out on the grass with the dogs, listening to three musicians playing music together with a group of folks from different sites, and little kids running around playfully. I only wished I had brought my mandolin!!! Next time.

And there will definitely be a next time. We highly recommend this campground. There are not many PUP suitable sites, but there are a few, including 1,2,7,8,9 and 20, where we stayed. If you are adept at maneuvering your camper, you could probably get into some of the tent sites,as well. Ranger Pat runs a tight ship, and everything was well organized, people were respectful of each other, and the vibe was a good one. I even noticed the ranger touring the campground in her golf cart around 10pm, to ensure that quiet hours were being observed. We definitely felt that we had made a good choice for our first trip.