As soon as you mention Sterling Falls Gorge to a local in Stowe, Vermont, their eyes light up with excitement and a wistful look crosses their face as they remember the adventure they had getting to the falls hiking up a remote trail. But it wasn’t always like that. Until a few years ago the gorge was a private property owned by the Anderson Family. However, the Andersons generously donated the gorge to the town. A park was built around the gorge, creating this endearing tourist attraction. It’s an adventure worth the time and effort you put into it. The remote location of the gorge and the unique trail leading up to it make this a thrilling experience that you shouldn’t miss.
Sterling Falls Gorge*
Admittedly, this is not Niagara Falls, either in scope or size. Yet Sterling Falls Gorge in Stowe VT is host to three falls, six sets of cascades, and eight pools. Not bad for an attraction that still has yet to be featured on the official list of tourist attractions in the town. The falls are short in stature and magnitude, so no, you won’t hear the thundering water cascading over the rocks nor feel the sprinkling water on your face a mile away. In fact, you can get as close to the falls and cascades as the foliage will let you without even getting wet. Also, the pools are inaccessible, so you might hear the water dropping on the bedrock, but you won’t be able to see them. Still, there’s a mystery surrounding the whole gorge, including both the visible and invisible parts that attracts outdoorsy adventurers to it.
*Please note that this area is undergoing conservation and is not open to the public at this time. The proposed reopening date is scheduled for sometimes in Summer 2021.
You can get to the trailhead at Sterling Gorge Road from Sterling Valley Road. It’s an interpretive trail that, like the gorge, used to be private property, but is now open to the public and free to use. At some point, the trail intersects with other trails to form a network of about 16 miles of trails. It is rated moderate to difficult and the surface is ungroomed packed dirt. Pets are allowed, but they must be leashed. You can hike or bike during the summer months, and in winter snowshoeing is a popular sport.
Access Not Allowed
Not all parts of Sterling Falls Gorge VT are open to the public. The town has roped off certain areas deemed too dangerous to explore, which means you won’t be able to get to see the whole gorge and its falls. Also, certain parts are steep and too hazardous to reach, so it’s recommended that you don’t venture into those places considered too risky. It’s worth noting that the blocked parts of the gorge are the most attractive part of it.
If you like mystery and adventure, the Sterling Falls Gorge should be up your alley. There are even unconfirmed rumors about more waterfalls in the upper gorge. Call us today for more information about local attractions and to book one of our vacation rentals in Stowe!