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Book Online or call HomeAway Booking Assistance 888-640-7927
Book Online or call HomeAway Booking Assistance 888-640-7927

Classic Vermont Hilltop Farmhouse - All Seasons Rental

Bedrooms 5
Space 3,000 sq. ft.
Property type farmhouse
Minimum Stay 2 - 3 nights


About the property

Large 5 bedroom, 2 Bath house on 30+ acres near ski & recreation areas.

Sitting on a plateau above the North Branch of the Williams River the house is secluded, yet less than 8 miles to the Okemo Mountain resort and town of Ludlow, or, 7 miles in the other direction to the village of Chester. Both towns with galleries, restaurants and gift shops to explore. As soon as you turn off the main paved road onto the dirt road traveling along the river, you’ll start to experience the beauty of the Smokeshire Valley. Then, when driving up our hill and arriving in the front yard looking out onto fields surrounded by forest you’ll feel like you’ve come to into another world.

This house is on the property of a working farm. It has the charm of an old farmhouse, yet, includes modern amenities, WiFi, DishNetwork and Smart TV.

Depending on the time of year, you may see sheep or horses grazing in the fields, ducks sitting in the pond, a fox crossing a snowy pasture or see an eagle flying overhead.

There are old logging roads and trails throughout the local woods, great for exploring, hiking or snow-shoeing & cross country skiing. Some of the old roads meet up with the VAST (Vermont Association of Snow Travelers) maintained trails. These are great for snowmobiling in the winter, or trail-bike riding in the summer & fall. It’s a short walk down the hill to the river for rock-hopping or try your hand at panning for gold!

The farmhouse has 5 bedrooms (4 upstairs, 1 downstairs), sleeping 10 to 12 people comfortably. There are two full baths (1 downstairs, 1 upstairs – there are also two extra sinks in a vanity upstairs outside the bathroom). We have a large eat-in kitchen with updated appliances, Kitchen Aid Mixer, Kuerig & drip Coffee Maker.

A dining room, opens into a large living room with a field stone fireplace. On the other side of the house is a library for those who’d like to retreat to a quiet place to read.

Off the living room is a door leading outside to a stone patio surrounded by a large grassy yard. On the patio are a table and chairs and a gas grill (in the summer). There is also a screened in porch or “mud room” where you first come in – sit outside in the warm weather or have a dry place to take off boots in the winter

Agro-tourism - The farmhouse is on your hosts' working farm (their home is located about ¼ mile further up the hill, out of sight). Depending on the time of year, if you want to experience picking fresh blueberries and raspberries, help out with “haying”, help to move or feed sheep or learn how to harness a work horse, they love to share their experience. Horse drawn hay rides (or sleigh rides) are available with notice.

Traveling with horses? There is a large paddock with a run-in shed available. Call ahead for more details.

Wedding venue! Take your vows with the vista of the Green Mountains as a backdrop. There is room in the back yard for setting up chairs and tables as well as room in one of the barns, and a large open area for a tent.

More Details

Donna McNeill-Hudkins
Member since: 2014
Speaks: english
Response time:
Within 12 hours
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
February 22, 2018

About Donna McNeill-Hudkins

Peter grew up in this house, and he met Donna in Boston when she was a corporate trade show manager and he was coordinating large construction projects. They moved up to Vermont full time in 2000 and built their off grid (solar & wind powered) home further up the hill. They raise blueberries & raspberries, sheep and work on the local area farms forests using a combination of new and old technologies (a team of Suffolk Draft Horses). Following the traditions of a sustainable hill side farm.

Donna McNeill-Hudkins purchased this farmhouse in 1963

Why Donna McNeill-Hudkins chose Chester

The original Farmhouse was on the tax listings in 1802. Over the years, it’s been added to and updated, but continues to have traditional Vermont Farmhouse charm and appeal. It is very private and secluded, yet within 1 hours drive of 6 major ski areas for winter activities. You may also just enjoy the immediate area - acres of woodland for hiking, picnicing, snow-shoing, cross country skiing. Or, just sit in the yard and enjoy the quiet. You may see a horse wander through, or one of the farm dogs may stop to visit. You let us know the experience you want, we will try to deliver.

Guestbook comments from the owner

We stayed at Donna and Peter’s Farm House several weeks ago for a family reunion. The house was welcoming from our initial arrival with its incredible setting – sheep on the hill, horses in the stable, etc. comfortable furnishings and amazing farmhouse charm in every room. From the large fireplace in the living room to several large dining areas to the vast library, there is a piece of the house for everyone to enjoy on their own but plenty of room for all to be together. The bedrooms were plentiful and comfortable and each one unique. What is better than watching a beautiful Vermont sunrise and herds of sheep grazing in the morning rays from the comfort of your bed! We thoroughly enjoyed our stay and hope to return again soon!
Sep 2015
  • 1 of 1


Chester Farmhouse Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • farmhouse
  • Guests provide their own meals
Floor Area:
  • 3000 sq. ft.
House Rules:
  • Max. occupancy: 12
  • Minimum Age Limit for Renters ...
  • pets considered ...
  • Events Allowed
  • children welcome ...
  • non smoking only ...
Location Type:
  • Mountain View
  • Resort ...
  • Rural
  • Adventure
  • Away From It All
  • Family
  • Historic
  • Sports & Activities
  • Clothes Dryer
  • Fireplace
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating ...
  • Internet ...
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room ...
  • Parking ...
  • Telephone
  • Towels Provided
  • Washing Machine
  • Coffee Maker ...
  • Dishes & Utensils ...
  • Dishwasher
  • Kitchen ...
  • Microwave
  • Oven ...
  • Pantry Items ...
  • Refrigerator ...
  • Stove ...
  • Toaster ...
  • Dining ...
  • Dining Room
  • seating for 8 people
  • 5 Bedrooms, Sleeps 12
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 double , Small room - 8' x 9'
    Bedroom 2 - 1 queen , 23' x 14' Upstairs
    Bedroom 4 - 2 twin/ single , Upstairs
    Bedroom 3 - 1 queen , Upstairs, has barn board on the walls. Has a ceiling fan
    Bedroom 5 - 1 double , 2 twin/ single , Upstairs. The Dormatory 17' x 18'
  • Note that the upstairs bedrooms have different levels (step up/step down). Be careful! All floors are wood laminate with throw rugs.
  • Books ...
  • DVD Player ...
  • Satellite / Cable ...
  • Television ...
  • Deck / Patio ...
  • Lawn / Garden
  • Outdoor Grill ...
  • Ski & Snowboard ...
  • wheelchair inaccessible
  • autumn foliage
  • forests
  • pond
  • recreation center
  • restaurants
Leisure Activities:
  • antiquing
  • bird watching
  • eco tourism
  • horseback riding
  • outlet shopping
  • photography
  • sight seeing
  • sledding
  • walking
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • groceries
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • equestrian events
  • freshwater fishing
  • golf
  • hiking
  • hunting
  • ice skating
  • mountain biking
  • skiing
  • swimming
Note: House is not air conditioned. There are times we will have horses in the barn/paddock. Feel free to come and visit the horses, or, up the hill to the sheep barn. Lambs born in early March.


Wonderful! 4.8/5 -
(19 traveler reviews)

78% Complete
21% Complete
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Classic Vermont Hilltop Farmhouse - All Seasons Rental
average rating of 4.7894735 based on 20 reviews

Smokeshire Hilltop Farms is a winter wonderland! Donna and Pete spoiled us all!

  • 5 of 5

The house, its eating, sleeping, relaxing, and playing accommodations were well suited for our family of 12 from 7 years to 71— everyone had a blast! Donna’s prompt and thoughtful responses from the moment we signed on were an accurate reflection of the care and attention to detail our stay would receive. We all strongly recommend the farm: there is loads of space inside and out. Skiing and stores are nearby yet, once on the farm, one feels completely shut off from the rest of the world. Idyllic! None of us will ever forget this Christmas week at Smokeshire. Thank you, Donna and Pete, for the incredible memories.

  • Submitted: Jan 4, 2018
  • Stayed: December 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thank you! You are welcome back any time! Maybe when the temperature is not so cold! Thanks for the pictures you sent of the sleigh-ride! Donna & Peter
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Boston, MA/Sevilla Capital

A great place for a midwinter gathering at picturesque working farm

  • 5 of 5

Donna and Peter are great hosts. The farm is so amazing and the house is very spacious and great for a group of women friends on their annual getaway, plenty of room to spread out in this old farmhouse, chat by the fireplace or snowshoe around the property and meet the beautiful workhorses! We made some great dinners in, and also went out to explore, eat and shop in the typical Vermont towns nearby. Thanks Donna for everything! We’ll be back!

  • Submitted: Jan 15, 2018
  • Stayed: January 2018
  • Source: HomeAway
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Andover, MA

Magical Vermont Farmhouse!

  • 5 of 5

Wow! This place is absolutely charming and a real gem! The house is big yet cozy and comfortably slept 12 adults and accommodated us all sitting together for large family style meals. The property is incredible, you will feel totally secluded up in the mountains surrounded by beautiful forests, fields, a pond and stream. Our group enjoyed waking up to look out on the lovely mountain view while sipping our coffee, read ing and practicing yoga in the backyard. During the day we explored the surrounding forest, hiked up the creek and took a dip. What really made our stay enchanting were all the amazing animals on the property. Two gorgeous and extremely friendly horses roamed the property and let us pet them while they grazed. We loved watching all the sheep and particularly loved feeding the baby pigs. There are blue berries and raspberries on the property which we were able to pick as well. In the evenings our group enjoyed sitting around the large outdoor fire pit with plenty of chairs for fireside chats under the stars. Donna and her husband are extremely friendly, generous, and lovely hosts! We couldn't have enjoyed our stay more and are looking forward to returning back to this amazing Vermont getaway in the future!

  • Submitted: Aug 31, 2017
  • Stayed: July 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: Thanks Derek, it was great to have your group! We enjoyed sharing our farm with you all, and you're welcome back any time! Donna
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1 0

Relaxing long weekend

  • 4 of 5

Charming old farmhouse in a beautiful setting and good location for accessing other sites in Vermont - nice view of the mountains, great patio and fire pit out back. It accommodated our group of 7 very comfortably. Loved the daily visit of the horses and enjoyed feeding them carrots and apples. The sheep were just across from the house and welcomed us with their "baaaas". Extra bonus - the blueberries and raspberries were ripe and ready to be picked. Ludlow is just a few minutes away and we enjoyed buying dinner at the Farmer's Market. Donna and her husband were most gracious and helpful. Would love to have known more about the history of the house and farm.

  • Submitted: Aug 6, 2017
  • Stayed: August 2017
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Brooklyn NY


  • 5 of 5

We had a group of 8 people and a small dog stay at Donna's property for a skiing getaway and it was fantastic. Plenty of space, nice modern appliances, clean and comfortable. Plus, they have 2 dogs, Bud and Bailey, who came to visit in the morning. Highly recommended, would love to stay again!

  • Submitted: Mar 13, 2017
  • Stayed: March 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
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Amazing place

  • 5 of 5

Our stay at Smokeshire was everything we wanted. Lots of space in the house, the fire place is great to sit by and play games. Pete and Donna are so friendly. The sleigh ride in the snow was great. Skiing close by! For sure will be back!

  • Submitted: Jan 8, 2017
  • Stayed: December 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
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Nearest Airport
120 Miles
Bradley International (Hartford)
Nearest Barpub
3 Miles
Neil's Place
Nearest Golf
8 Miles
Okemo Valley Golf Club
Nearest Train
20 Miles
Bellows Falls, VT (Amtrak)
Nearest Motorway
15 Miles
Route 91
Nearest Restaurant
3 Miles
Neal's Place
Nearest Ski
8 Miles
Nearest Beach
14 Miles
Camp Plymouth State Park
Car: necessary

This house is great - whether you want to sit back, relax and just enjoy the beauty of the area, walk the local forests & fields, or head out for a day of skiing/golf/antiquing. Hiking? the house is about 40 minutes from the Long Trail portion of the Appalachian Trail. We've got books on many hiking trails in the area.

Room for snow-mobiles, access to trails.

Traveling with Horses? We have a paddock & barn.




Additional information about rental rates

Refundable damage deposit $200
Cleaning Fee $140
Pet Fee $50
Tax Rate 9.0%

Rates are subject to change without notice.
The house is part of a working farm, as such, we may have animals in adjacent buildings. Children should be supervised at all times!
Note, there is no air conditioning in the house.
In the winter, an all wheel drive vehicle would be best to get to the house. The house is on a town road, plowed and sanded, but a steep hill.

Owner's Cancellation Policy

100% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date.

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