Ball Mountain is a small peak near Jamaica, Vermont. It lies across the West River from Jamaica State Park, which is renowned for the release weekends of the Ball Mountain Dam, upstream from the park. The mountain itself is very ledgy, which provides many good views from the summit but make the mountain more difficult to climb. The slope continues to get steeper until it drops several hundred feet down into the valley below. These cliffs may be difficult to reach given how treacherous the terrain is. The summit of the mountain is mostly open, with views in pretty much every direction. The best views are perhaps the ones down to the center of Jamaica and over to Stratton and Bromley Mountains, or the view straight down into the valley. If you summit the mountain, you will likely have the entire thing to yourself. On the western side of the summit, the mountain leads down to a col with another smaller, unnamed peak. This col is the best way to reach the mountain, as the east, south, and north faces of the mountain are all much steeper.
The best spot to park is at Jamaica State Park, and then walk out of the park and across the Depot Rd. bridge to Worden Rd. After walking down to the end of Worden Rd., there is a gate. There is a possibility of parking here but it is a good idea to park at the state park just in case.
Warning: This hike requires a bushwhack through treacherous terrain. Please be prepared and have experience bushwhacking before you start this hike. Also, there are no postings along the route, but if someone asks you to leave, please respect their wishes.
From the gate at the end of Worden Road, continue up the old road until you reach a field. At the edge of the field, take a right and leave the trail and go into the woods. Work your way uphill and try to keep mostly to the western side of the mountain, as the eastern side is more dangerous. Once the first ledges are reached, there are more higher up and closer to the summit. These ledges have more open views. If for some reason, you want to reach the actual summit, walk into the brush slightly above the ledges and you will reach the high point in a couple dozen yards.
A day use fee is charged to enter Jamaica State Park.
When to Climb
The best time to go is when it is a dry, clear day. A slip on the ledges could prove to be fatal in places.
There is a campground at Jamaica State Park for those wishing to stay longer.
Jamaica State Park---http://www.vtstateparks.com/htm/jamaica.htm