A large lake in the heart of the Green Mountains with not a single house on it makes this a special place to get away. The reservoir is actually part of the Deerfield River and is for power generation further downstream. The only sign of this is the dam at the southern end near the launch. The launch area is well maintained as a day recreation area with picnic tables. There are some trails around the lake; however I have only gone there to paddle. Beware of the winds. The lake sits at over 2000 feet and as the valley and reservoir run north/south the winds frequently blow large whitecaps right into the launch.
Paddling on Somerset on the rare calm day is memorable experience. The only road access to the lake is at the boat launch on the southern end and after a few minutes you can leave that all behind. You get views the ski slopes of Mt. Snow and that is one of the few signs of civilization. In the northern part of the lake there are a few islands where you can pull out for a lunch and a swim. If you go during the week there are usually few other boats on the water so there is wonderful feeling of solitude.
With the consistent winds this is a great place to play with a kayak and sail. It is also a great place to practice self-rescues just get more comfortable in windy choppy conditions. Just don't head out into the northern part of the lake if you are uncomfortable with large wind whipped waves.
Remember if trying to go early season, the reservoir is at 2000 feet and the snow remains there much longer than in the valleys below. Ice out also happens well after the lower level lakes.
From the intersection of VT-9 and VT-100 go west approximately 6 miles to Somerset Rd. Turn right onto Somerset Rd and go straight about 10 miles to the end of the road.
Warning Somerset Rd is a dirt road and can get rough especially in early spring. Take it slow.
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