Chittenden Reservoir is a quiet and pristine high-elevation lake surrounded by the Green Mountain National Forest only a few miles from Rutland, Vermont.
Because Chittenden Reservoir lies within the National Forest, there is little lakefront development and much of the seven-mile shoreline remains unspoiled and rugged. There is the Mountain Top Inn open year-round for visitors and a handful of private cottages, but these are clustered near the dam. The lake is used for motorized boating, canoeing, kayaking, fishing, and swimming during the warmer months, and ice fishing during the winter.
Nearby is Leffert’s Pond, a small 50-acre lake and wetland that is used for fishing, canoeing, and kayaking.
The reservoir was formed by the Central Vermont Public Service in 1909 by damming East Creek for power generating purposes and flood protection. The land was bowl-shaped and fed by numerous streams, making it an ideal site for impoundment. It was named after Thomas Chittenden, Vermont’s first governor. The hydroelectric power station was finished soon after that could provide electricity to 2,500 residences.
Around 2001, the Central Vermont Public Service sold 2,000 acres of land surrounding the lake to the Green Mountain National Forest in an effort to preserve the land and develop further passive recreational opportunities.