Archive for the ‘outdoor activities’ Category

Good Western Massachusetts Hikes

March 19th, 2012 by Applegate Inn

Quite a few guests of our Berkshires Bed and Breakfast come here in order to be closer to nature. Many live in Boston, New York City, and Hartford. They crave the outdoors, the fresh air, the quiet, and they find it in the Berkshires.

A favorite activity is hiking, which can accommodate most all fitness levels. Intrepid hikers can summit the tallest peak in the region, Mount Greylock. Folks looking for more of an amble through the woods may prefer the Tranquility Trail in the Pittsfield State Forest, a gentle, half-mile trail through deciduous forest and hemlock stands.

Hikes in Western Massachusetts are plentiful. A few favorites are listed below:

Monument Mountain, just south of Stockbridge. Herman Melville spent many hours exploring Monument Mountain, sometimes with his friend Nathaniel Hawthorne. Conversations during those hikes helped inspire Melville’s great opus, Moby Dick. Just think what a hike here could bring out in you. There are three miles of trails around Monument Mountain. If you make it to the top of Squaw Peak, you’ll be rewarded with wonderful views.

Schermerhorn Gorge Trail in October Mountain State Forest. This 3.7-mile loop features some dramatic contrasts that make it truly lovely. It is considered difficult thanks to a few tricky and steep spots, though it only gains about 600 feet in elevation.

The Benedict Pond Loop, in the Beartown Forest. This 1.5-mile loop is pleasant any time of year. For the most part, it hugs the coast of the shallow Benedict Pond and gains little elevation. The trail can be a bit moist in areas, but the landscape is lovely.

The Appalachain Trail. The AT passes close to our Berkshires Inn, and some of our guests simply must get their feet on it. We understand, and we help many guests realize that dream. Since the Appalachian Trail is best done one-way, we help drop a car at one trail head and shuttle guests to another one.

At the end of the day, no matter how long the hike or how strenuous, we invite our guests to relax with wine and cheese in our parlor. It is a reward well earned.

 

 

It’s Time to Ski in the Berkshires

January 4th, 2012 by Applegate Inn

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Jiminy Peak is close to our Mass Bed and Breakfast.

Now that the holidays have passed and the cold days of winter are stretching before us, it’s time to think about ski getaways in the Berkshires. Our Berkshire B and B is close to several terrific downhill ski areas.

  • Ski Butternut, in Great Barrington, is about 12 miles from the inn.
  • Catamount Ski Area, in Hillsdale NY, is about 20 miles from here.
  • Jiminy Peak, up in Hancock, Massachusetts, is about 30 miles from our inn.

Although we haven’t received a healthy dose of snow since the Great Halloween Blizzard of 2011, all three ski areas are open, and all are making snow.

Ski Butternut is open weekdays 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and weekends 8:15 to 4 p.m. This area also offers snow tubing on holidays and weekends.

Catamount Ski Area is open daily from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m (it opens at 8:30 on weekends); night skiing is offered Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 to 9 p.m., and Friday and Saturday from 3 to 10 p.m.

Jiminy Peak is open open daily from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. (opening at 8:30 a.m. on weekends and holidays). Live music frequently entices skiers to linger after leaving the slopes of Jiminy Peak. A full calendar of events is listed at Jiminy Peak.

Skiers who stay at our Mass Bed and Breakfast Monday through Friday will receive two free lift passes for Butternut Ski Area, or discount passes to Jiminy Peak. If you’d rather ski Catamount, take advantage of our three night, $50 Special Package and put the savings towards your ski tickets. Details about these and other specials are available on our Bed and Breakfast Berkshires Specials page.

Why not stay for several days and try all three ski areas? Folks who are traveling from New York City, Hartford, or Boston may find that stretching out a weekend makes the most sense; instead of driving out here every weekend, come out here every other weekend for three days. Less driving, more skiing. Wonderful.

 

 

Thanksgiving Weekend in the Berkshires

November 23rd, 2011 by Applegate Inn

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Bartholomew’s Cobble.

The best antidote to a day of feasting is fresh air and exercise. Both can be found in spades in Western Massachusetts. After spending Thursday in the kitchen and around the table, head to our Berkshires Bed and Breakfast with hiking boots in hand.

Snow accumulation from the amazing October blizzard has melted, meaning that hiking trails across Western Massachusetts are open. The forecast promises a sunny Thanksgiving weekend. In short, hiking conditions will be perfect.

Favorite Hikes Near Our Berkshires Bed and Breakfast:

  • Beartown State Forest. Hike the easy Benedict Pond Loop Trail; follow a stretch of the Appalachian Trail for a  hike of moderate difficulty; explore one of the forest trails for a more difficult hike.
  • Brace Mountain. The views from the top of Brace Mountain are glorious on a clear day. Bring a picnic, for you’ll want time to rest after this invigorating hike.
  • Bartholomew’s Cobble. Explore five miles of trails and stand atop Hurlbut’s Hill. Visit the natural history museum to learn about the area’s fascinating geography,  and historic Ashley House to learn about its history.
  • Sages Ravine. The waterfalls should be roaring at this time of year. For a moderate hike, drive to the top of Mount Washington Reservation and then follow the trail down tot he ravine. A more strenuous trail leads from the Undermountain Trail.

To make a reservation at our Bed and Breakfast in the Berkshires, please call 1.800.691.9012 or visit our reservation page.

Ride a Horse Through the Berkshires This Fall

September 25th, 2011 by Applegate Inn

The trees have started to turn here, but fall foliage is not yet peaking in the Massachusetts Berkshires. Now is the right time to plan a trip here during peak season. Our Berkshires Bed and Breakfast tends to fill in October, when the surrounding forests are decked out in dazzling reds, oranges, and yellows. Plan now to be here then.

Earthy Palette

There is nothing like autumn in New England.

Driving down country lanes is a wonderful way to see a lot of trees. Spreading a picnic blanket under a large maple is a delightful way to drink in an autumn afternoon. But those who can delve deep into a New England forest during the peak of foliage season are truly fortunate.

Berkshire Horseback Adventures leads trail rides through nearby Kennedy Park and up Lenox Mountain. To experience New England foliage from the back of a horse is magical. The scent of the horses mixes with the woody odor of fallen leaves. The crisp air magnifies the sound of the horses breath, his feet clipping along the trail.

Leave New York, Boston, and Hartford behind and drive west like a cowboy heading into the sunset. Spend a few days at our Bed and Breakfast in the Berkshires this autumn. While here, treat yourself to a trail ride. It is sure to be one of the most memorable events of the year.

More information about trail rides may be found at Berkshire Horseback Adventures.

Ashuwillticook Rail Trail

August 9th, 2011 by Applegate Inn

The Ashuwillticook Rail Trail meanders through the Hoosic River Valley between Mount Greylock and the Hoosac Mountains. Ashuwillticook means “the pleasant river between the hills”, and the ride does indeed pass through some very lovely country. It has been enjoyed by many guests of our Berkshires Bed and Breakfast.

Relax by our Berkshires Inn pool

Relax by the pool after a day of biking the Ashuwillticook Rail Trail.

The trail runs just over 11 miles between the Berkshire Mall in Lanesborough and the Visitor’s Center in Adams. Cyclists pass Chester Reservoir (a good spot for bird watching and picnics), forests, and historic mill buildings on the other side of the Hoosic River. In Adams, the trail runs parallel to Main Street, where there are many good eateries and shops.

For a longer ride, cycle from our luxury Berkshires Bed and Breakfast in Lee, approximately 16 miles south of Lanesborough. You’ll find a dip in our pool and our wine and cheese hour extremely satisfying in the evening.

Paddling in Western Massachusetts

July 19th, 2011 by Applegate Inn

One of the best ways to spend a warm summer day is on (and in) water. Guests of our Lenox MA Bed and Breakfast are always welcome to spend as much time as they like in our pool, and for some, a pool is all the water they need. Others crave something else.

Fortunately there are many ways to experience the water in the Massachusetts Berkshires. Read on to learn about a few options:

Kayaker on the Housatonic River

One of the more thrilling sections of the Housatonic River.

  • Paddle the Housatonic River. Bring your own kayak or rent one at the Arcadian Shop in Lenox. The shop will deliver kayaks to the public boat launch at Decker’s Landing on the Housatonic River, and pick them up at Woods Pond.
  • Canoe the Housatonic River. Guided trips lasting approximately 2 hours are lead by Berkshires Canoe Tours, departing from Decker’s Landing in Lenox.
  • Float on Onota Lake in nearby Pittsfield. Onota Boat Livery rents kayaks, canoes, fishing boats and small motorized boats. Fish, float, or navigate the shores.
  • Explore Cheshire Lake. Berkshire Outfitters in Adams rents kayaks and canoes and will transport folks to Cheshire Lakes and a few other areas.

Many guests of our Berkshires Bed and Breakfast travel with their own kayaks and canoes. In addition to the Housatonic River, they explore Stockbridge Bowl and the many lakes, ponds, and reservoirs of October Mountain State Forest. Our guests always have plenty of energy to fuel their activities thanks to the delicious, abundant breakfasts served each morning at the inn.

Schermerhorn Gorge Trail

May 26th, 2011 by Applegate Inn

We’ve put away our skis for the season and oiled our hiking boots. In the coming months, we plan to stretch our legs on the hike to Bish Bash Falls. Maybe we’ll walk a stretch of the Appalachian Trail, which runs through October Mountain State Forest and passes close to our Inn Berkshires. Perhaps we’ll also walk to Schermerhorn Gorge.

Hike the scenic Schermerhorn Gorge Trail this summer.

Many of our guests have enjoyed the scenic trail to Schermerhorn Gorge, in nearby October Mountain State Forest. It’s a 3.5-mile loop with a few fairly strenuous sections. We always suggest bringing a lunch, for there is an excellent spot to picnic along the way.

Cool off in the pool at our Berkshires Bed and Breakfast after your hike, and relax on one of our lounge chairs. Come evening, you’ll be ready for a drink in the parlor  and dinner out in Lee, Lenox, or Stockbridge.

Berkshire Botanical Garden

April 27th, 2011 by Applegate Inn

Tulips

Walk among tulips at the Berkshire Botanical Gardens.

The Berkshire Botanical Garden opens for the season on May 1, 2011. Each year we know that spring has truly arrived once the Botanical Garden opens. We look forward to it – not just as a herald of warm weather, but because of the many fine events offered at the gardens.

The season opens with Out on a Limb: Tree Houses: Architects Take a Bough. The exhibition features six creative tree houses by the following architects and designers: Michael Trapp, Joseph Cho, Stefanie Lew, Robyn Sandberg, Gray Davis, Will Meyer, Mark Smith and Tim Smith, and James Odegaard. These tree houses redefine the treehouse that your father may have built in your backyard. They make the spirit soar with possibilities.

Berkshire Botanical Garden is comprised of 15 acres of meticulously maintained gardens and trails. The gardens are some of the oldest in the country, and focus on plants native to the region. Many guests of our Berkshires Bed and Breakfast enjoy visiting the gardens during their stay with us.

The Berkshire Botanical Gardens are approximately six miles from our Berkshires Lodging. We recommend stopping by Stockbridge Massachusetts on the way there or back for a bite to eat.

Additional information about the gardens is available at Berkshire Botanical Gardens.

Ski Butternut

March 1st, 2011 by Applegate Inn

There’s snow in them there hills!

Ski Butternut is a ski area located in Great Barrington, less than thirty minutes from our Lee MA Bed and Breakfast. Though spring is just around the corner, there should be snow for some time to come. In other words, plan a ski vacation in the Berkshires.

We have several Berkshires lodging specials to entice skiers to our inn:

Drop everything and take advantage of our Spur of the Moment Special. If you and your skis can be here within 24 hours, you’ll receive a 15% discount on your entire stay.

Book two nights in advance (Sunday through Thursday) and enjoy savings with our Two Night $75 Special. Pay for one night and receive the second night for just $75.

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Quintessential New England Winter

February 16th, 2011 by Applegate Inn

New England has been hit with one snowstorm after another this winter. Inch by inch we’ve watched our driveways become narrower and our mailboxes become shorter. All this snow may have its disadvantages, but the view from the windows of our Lenox MA Bed and Breakfast is lovely.

Skiers in New England are, of course, absolutely overjoyed by the conditions. Guests of our Bed and Breakfast Berkshires arrive armed with snowshoes, skies, and snowboards. We feed them a breakfast fit for a day in the snow, and send them out the door. They return in the late afternoon or early evening, ready to warm themselves by the crackling fire and sip a glass of wine.

The trails at Canterbury Farms Ski Area.

We often refer cross-country skiers and snowshoers to the nearby Canterbury Farm Ski Area. The trails currently have a 36 inch base and are groomed daily. The fastest skiing these days may be in the morning, since we’re actually seeing temperatures rise a bit during the day.

Canterbury Farm Ski Area has more than 20 kilometers of trails that circle through woods and fields, past quintessential stone walls and around beaver ponds. It is New England winter at its finest – the stuff of dreams for folks who live in New York City, Boston, or Hartford.

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