Darling State Park

Burke & Kirby, Caledonia County
1,998 Acres

View from Burke Mountain, Darling State Park

General Description:
The fire tower erected on the summit of Burke Mountain in 1912 is reported to be the first fire tower in the state of Vermont. From this vantage point, forest fires could be located and the proper authorities notified. The Darling Family donated a large parcel of land to the State in the 1930s, which became Darling State Park and, sometime in the 1930s, Burke Mountain was identified by local residents as a potential recreation site. The early plan for this “forest park” included an auto road, ski trails, hiking trails, picnic facilities and running water. A Civilian Conservation Corps crew was employed to build the auto road to the summit and completed it in 1935. Interest in downhill skiing grew over the years with the first ski lift installed in 1953. A portion of Darling State Park has been leased to various entities over the years as part of the Burke Mountain Ski Area.

Unique Features:
Burke Mountain, the main feature of Darling State Park, is 3500 feet in elevation. The toll road to the summit was constructed by the CCC. Remnants of CCC structures can still be found in the area. The fire tower at the summit of Burke Mountain offers panoramic views of the surrounding area.

Recreation Overview:
Darling State Park is home to diverse recreation such as hiking, hunting, skiing, mountain biking, and hang gliding. Portions of Darling State Park are currently leased to QBurke Inc as part of Burke Mountain Ski Area. Downhill skiing and mountain biking is permitted through this lease. Hang gliding has been an historical use and launch sites are located along the Toll Road. Darling State Park is open for primitive camping, following the Primitive Camping Guidelines.

Planning Overview:
Darling State Park is included in the Victory Management Unit along with Victory State Forest and Victory Basin Wildlife Management Area.

Planning Updates:
The Vermont Agency of Natural Resources is currently working on the long-range management plan for the Victory Management Unit (24,000 acres). The draft long range management plan for the Victory Management Unit is now available for review and comment. A public meeting was held on Thursday, November 10, 2016. A second meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, January 10, 2017 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in the Burke Mountain Room at Lyndon State College, 1001 College Road, Lyndonville, VT. For more informatino, please follow the link below.  

 

Any questions about this parcel? Please contact:

Louis Bushey

Stewardship Forester
374 Emerson Falls Road
St. Johnsbury, VT 05819
Work Phone: 802-535-8410
Fax: 802-748-6687
louis.bushey@vermont.gov