Jamaica, VT 05343
Park Updates & Alerts
- The West River trail is now open to the viewing platform at the Dumplings. Other trails work is continuing, but other trails are trails are closed.
- Firewood is not to be brought to parks from out of state UNLESS the wood is packaged, labeled as having been heat treated, and certified by USDA or the appropriate state department of agriculture. For more info, click here.
- The weight limit on the Depot Street Bridge leading into the park has a weight limit of 8 tons with no exceptions. Please be sure the total weight of your vehicle and RV does not exceed the limit.
Go 1/2 mile east on Depot St.
The weight limit for the town's bridge leading into the park has been downgraded to 8 tons. Be sure to check the weight of your RV or trailer unit!
Jamaica State Park, now comprising 772 acres, was completed and opened to the public in 1969.
Previously, the area had supported a few small farms and a sawmill. The West River Railroad ran through what is now the state park. The old railroad bed is now used as the trail that leads along the West River to Ball Mountain Dam. The railroad operated from about 1879 until 1927, when a flood wiped most of it out.
Jamaica State Park is located on a bend of the West River about one-half mile from the center of the town of Jamaica on the Salmon Hole of the West River. Two and a half miles upstream via the West River Trail is the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Ball Mountain Dam Project. Hamilton Falls State Natural Area, which includes one of Vermont’s largest waterfalls, is a popular spot to hike. It can be reached via a 3-mile (one-way) hike from the campground. Please keep in mind that the State Natural Area is protected land – please stay on marked trails and leave only footprints. Swimming at Hamilton Falls is very dangerous and not recommended. There are strong currents and slippery rocks. Please do not attempt to access the middle pool as there is no safe entry or exit. More than 12 people have died at this site as a result of injury from attempting access or exiting the upper and middle pools.
The West River is also a favorite spot for many fishermen. The combination of deep slow running water and shallow fast ripples makes for some fine fishing.
Facilities / Amenities
There are 41 tent/RV sites and 18 lean-to sites that are spread throughout the campground. There are two restrooms with flush toilets, hot and cold running water and coin-operated hot showers. A picnic shelter for campers and a small nature center are located near the picnic area and swimming hole. A hiking trail follows the West River and branches off toward Hamilton Falls.
White water release
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers typically schedules water releases from the Ball Mountain Dam for recreational paddling on the West River twice a year. The controlled releases make for great whitewater paddling. Jamaica State Park is the center of paddling activity. For 2023 there will not be a fall shuttle due to a landslide on the West River trail.
The 2023 spring release has been confirmed for May 6 - 7 and the fall release has been confirmed for September 23 - 24. We are accepting 2-night camping reservations for the May weekend and 3-night reservations for the September weekend.
The campground is open for the spring release; reservations can be made by directly contacting our Reservation Call Center only (no online reservations for the special paddling weekends). Reservations may be made for a 2-night minimum. If you plan to paddle all day Sunday, you either need to vacate your campsite by 11 AM or book your site through Sunday night.
For the fall two-day release, 3-night minimum stay is required with a maximum of one campsite reserved per customer, two vehicles per campsite and a maximum of 8 occupants per site. Reservations can be made by directly contacting our Reservation Call Center only (no online reservations for the special paddling weekends) beginning October 3, 2022. Reservation holders are responsible for all occupants and activity on their campsite and must provide park management with a list of occupants prior to the event; campsites may not be pooled and re-sold per FPR License and Special Use Permit rules. Due to a rock slide on the West River Trail, the shuttle will not be in operation for the Fall 2023 release, and paddlers are unable to walk their boats down the trail.