Bomoseen State Park

Bomoseen State Park

22 Cedar Mountain Road Castleton, Vermont 05743

Bomoseen State Park Official Website
Bomoseen State Park map

Tips for Birding

When submitting eBird observations at Bomoseen State Park, it is most helpful to start a new checklist for each hotspot in the park. Use the general hotspot when you have a checklist that includes multiple locations or if no other hotspot or personal location is appropriate for your sightings.

Birds of Interest

In spring and summer the entrance area to the campground, the trail that runs between the parking area and a small marsh, and the picnic area are good spots for Wood Duck, Eastern Kingbird, Yellow-throated, and Warbling vireos, Gray Catbird, American Redstart, Common Yellowthroat, Yellow Warbler, and Baltimore Oriole. All nest here.

Mid to late fall, before the lake freezes, check the beach area for congregating ducks including Common Loon, Ring-necked Duck, Common Goldeneye, Hooded and Common mergansers, and the occasional scoter. (After you leave the park a stop at the Kehoe Fishing Access south of the park is another good spot to look for these species.)

A 1.5-mile nature trail loop leaves the north side of the entrance road just before the parking area. Turn left after crossing a road and a grassy field, where a short climb to the left takes you to a ridge from which you can catch glimpses of nearby Glen Lake. The trail is good for Hermit and Wood thrush, a variety of warblers including Black-throated Green, Blackburnian, and Canada warblers. Listen for Eastern Wood-pewee and Scarlet Tanager as well. In winter it’s fairly easy to spot Red-breasted Nuthatch, Brown Creeper, and Golden-crowned Kinglet.

About 0.75 miles along the trail, on the left, if you are walking in a clockwise direction, there is a small pond created by the old slate industry. It is a little hard to find, but it’s not far off the trail and worth the effort. Dead trees provide nesting for Tree Swallows and Great Crested Flycatchers. Wood Duck and Hooded Mergansers are often present.

Red-shouldered Hawk is frequently seen and heard at the park starting in mid-March. Osprey is often seen over the lake.

About this Location

Bomoseen State Park, located on the western side of Lake Bomoseen in Castleton, offers a variety of habitats for great birding for a good part of the year. If non-birding friends and family accompany you in the summer, they can find plenty to do while you look at the birds.

The park is open from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day during which period there is a $4 entrance fee. It is well worth it for the birds and the support of our Vermont State Parks.

From MA-4A in Hydeville (west of Castleton), take Lake Road north for four miles on the west side of the lake.

About Bomoseen State Park

See all hotspots at Bomoseen State Park

Bomoseen State Park, 3,576 acres, is located in the Taconic Mountains on the shores of Lake Bomoseen, the largest lake entirely within Vermont’s borders. The Taconics are the slate-producing region of Vermont, and the area’s history parallels the rise and fall of Vermont’s slate industry. The park contains several quarry holes and their adjacent colorful slate rubble piles as reminders of this period. These quarries provided slate for the West Castleton Railroad and Slate Company, a complex of 60 to 70 buildings that stood between Glen Lake and Lake Bomoseen. Several slate buildings and foundations remain in the park. A self-guided Slate History Trail leads hikers through remnants of this bygone era.

Part of the area comprising the park was owned by the Lake Shore Slate Company, owned and operated by Samuel L. Hazard. When Mr. Hazard passed away in 1929 the remaining property was left to his stepdaughter, Martha Warren. Mrs. Warren lived there year-round, before making it her summer home. In 1959 she donated approximately 365 acres of land and included buildings to the State for recreational purposes and as a refuge and sanctuary for wildlife. A collection of historical objects is located in Mrs. Warren’s former home, which also includes the Park Ranger’s quarters.

First opened to the public in 1960, the park boundaries encompass more than 2,000 acres surrounding nearby Glen Lake and forested land comprising the camping area that is Half Moon State Park. Several hiking trails, including one to Half Moon, provide great hiking and wildlife-viewing opportunities. Boating, fishing, and swimming are popular in Lake Bomoseen and nearby Glen Lake.

The park has a beach for swimming and a picnic area. Several hiking trails, including one to Half Moon Pond State Park, provide great hiking opportunities. There is fishing in Lake Bomoseen, as well as in nearby Glen Lake.

State park entrance fees are in effect (Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day). During the off-season, this (and all Vermont State Parks) are open for day use. Restrooms are available when the park is open. A port-a-potty is usually available from mid-October until spring. Additional port-a-potties are available at nearby (but not walking distance) at the Kehoe Fishing Access on the west side of the lake. 

Notable Trails

The TrailFinder website has a description and map of a hike at Bomoseen State Park.


  • Restrooms on site

  • Entrance fee

  • Wheelchair accessible trail

Content from Bomoseen State Park Official Website and Susan Elliott, Rutland County Audubon Society

Last updated October 6, 2023