1.9 Miles
Time to Hike:
~57 minutes
Surface Type:
Chester, Vermont
43.287712, -72.646732
August 20, 2019
August 21, 2019

The Butternut Hill Trail in Chester, Vermont is a moderate 1.9-mile loop hike that features beautiful views from the summit of Butternut Hill.

Trail Name: Butternut Hill Trail, Chester Vt.

Location: Chester Town Forest, Road marker 4900 Lovers Lane Road, Chester Vt.

Allowed activities: hiking, birding, geocaching, picnicking, nature study, snowshoeing.

Forbidden activities: no atv’s.

Hours: There are no posted hours for trail use.

Parking and fees: The trailhead for the Butternut Trail is a small parking area off of the side of Lovers Lane Road at the 4900 road marker. There is no fee to park or use the trail.

Pets: There are no posted prohibitions for dogs being allowed on the trail. Butternut Hill Trail is on public land and dog owners are subject to Chester VT laws which state concerning dogs off leash… “No person shall permit a dog owned or kept by him to run at large within the Town. A dog, while on any public way or place, shall be kept under restraint. A dog is under restraint within the meaning of this ordinance if it is controlled by a leash not more than eight (8) feet long, or is at "heel" beside a competent person and obedient to that person's commands, or is on or within a vehicle.”


Accessibility:  This trail is not wheelchair or stroller friendly. There are the typical trip hazards to watch out for along the trail terrain such as roots, rocks, slippery stream beds and leaf litter, but there are no difficult rock scrambles.

Sanitation: There is no restroom or trash bin at the trail head or along the trail. To maintain the beauty of this trail, common sense rules should be adhered to and all waste (human or animal) should be carried out with the hiker and not left in a bag on the side of the trail.

Trail information:  There is a small trailhead sign in the parking area on Lovers Lane Road. The sign is tucked back from the road a bit and is easily missed if traveling by car. The parking area is not very well defined if vegetation has grown thick, but could easily accommodate 4 or 5 vehicles at one time. There is no information kiosk at the trailhead on Lovers Lane Road, and no maps are posted. Hikers should print a map before heading out by going to the link below:


The trail blaze markers for the Butternut Hill Trail are white rectangles and there are many of them along the trail making this trail very well defined. There are also several brown painted wooden signs with engraved yellow painted arrows, pointing the hiker safely along the trail. The signage, maps and trail maintenance performed along the trail is done thanks to the Chester Conservation Committee (CCC) which is an informal group of community volunteers. The CCC sponsors many events throughout the year and their mission is to help promote awareness, stewardship and enjoyment of Chester’s hiking trails. Their enthusiasm for the outdoors and care for this town forest is evident in the loving attention they have given to this great natural resource.

Length and features: This hike was an easy to moderate hike, 1.9 miles long, done as a loop. We considered it moderate due to the steady steep ascent that begins after a short wooded walk paralleling the road from the trailhead on Lovers Lane Road. The trail can also be done by accessing the Butternut Hill Trail from the Connector Trail with its yellow trail blaze markers and part of the Lost Mine Trail with its red trail blaze markers, off of Water Farm Road parking area. The ascent from the Water Farm Road trailhead will not be as steep, but the descent will be more strenuous.

Some thoughtful hiker(s) has brought up to the lookout point, two Adirondack chairs and set them along with a small milk crate for a table at the summit of the Butternut Hill Trail, creating a perfect spot to stop and rest, have a picnic and be quite comfortable in the process. The views of the nearby mountains from this summit are a highlight and well worth the heart pounding climb. There is also a geocache hidden near the summit that is well cared for and adds some extra fun to the climb.  Another great highlight that we very much enjoyed was the many well labeled tree species along the trail. Someone has taken a considerable amount of care and attention to undertake this task and has done a commendable job in so doing. We had no idea there were so many different tree species in this forest and were delighted to be able to see them all.

The Chester snowmobile club has use of the trails in this forest, and some sections of the Butternut Hill trail cross over it and run alongside those trails. Hikers will see orange snowmobile signs posted as well as the white trail blaze markers for the Butternut Hill trail. The Butternut Trail will intersect with the Connector trail near the termination of the hike with the Lost Mine Trail heading off to the left. The Butternut Trail exits the forest onto Reservoir Road at around the 1358 road marker. The trail continues a short distance up Reservoir Road and then back into the woods at the 1464 road marker, to parallel Reservoir Road guiding hikers first through a wide section of the trail that narrows into a single footpath with thick grasses on either side. The snowmobile trail will veer off to the right and the Butternut Hill Trail will continue straight with the white trail blaze markers marking the way back to the parking area on Lovers Lane Road.

The Butternut Hill Trail offers hikers a heart pounding workout to start, with a gorgeous view at the summit. The terrain that follows the summit is beautiful as well as educational. The trail travels along stretches of healthy forest where the canopy creates a lovely cool respite during a hot summer day.

Explore 9 trails near Chester, VT


Ticks - Lyme Disease More Info (CDC)
Poison Ivy/Oak



Blaze Color


Blaze Dot

506 '

Total Change
623 '

607 '

Butternut Hill Trail default picture

Photo Albums

1 Trip Report

No Star-Ratings
1.9 miles
Trail added
August 20, 2019
Updated on
August 21, 2019

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