Nothing is quite as beautiful as the Berkshires under autumn’s colorful spell. One of the nicest ways to get out and experience this beauty is with a visit to Bash Bish Falls State Park, home of Massachusetts’ highest waterfall!
The Berkshires of western Massachusetts are always lovely, no matter the season but nothing compares to the region once fall has painted it in autumn’s hues. Rich golds, deep reds, oranges, browns, and tans cover the landscape for an out of this world, natural spectacle. Combine this kaleidoscope of fall colors with an already stunning attraction like Bash Bish Falls and you have the recipe for a fantastic day’s adventure.
You’ve probably heard of Bash Bish Falls before. The name is memorable and the falls are easily the most famous in the Berkshires, if not the state. They’re certainly the highest, tumbling nearly 40 feet down a series of cascades, before being split in two for a final drop of 80 feet to the sparkling pool below.
Though the falls are picturesque no matter what time of year you visit, there are definitely better times to go. Summer sees the highest volume of traffic in the park, making it a bit noisy and crowded for many. Winter can be lovely but the trail gets very muddy and the icy falls can be treacherous.
Early spring is one of the very best times to visit, when the flow at the falls is at its peak. The trail can still be very muddy, however. Autumn is another good option. While the falls can still get crowded during weekends, fall is generally a quieter time. The flow may also be somewhat reduced come autumn but the lovely display of fall colors makes up for that.
Visiting Bash Bish Falls State Park
Bash Bish Falls are located in Mt. Everett State Reservation at Falls Road, in Mt Washington, MA. The falls are so close to the New York/Massachusetts state line that both states have their own trail to the attraction. The NY trail is so much longer and steeper, however, that many prefer the trail on the MA side.
Reaching the park from our Berkshires bed and breakfast, Applegate Inn, involves a lovely drive east on I-90. The drive takes around 40 minutes but the scenery, especially in fall, is so stunning you’ll swear it’s much shorter than that.
The hike to the falls from the Massachusetts parking lot is pretty steep but only a little over a quarter of a mile in length. You may get a bit of a workout but only just and the sight of the falls is more than worth it!
Bash Bish Falls pour down through a set of gorges to hit a massive boulder, splitting the flow. These two separate cascades then tumble 80 more feet down to the pool waiting below. When the flow is strong, the falls fill the air around them with a cooling mist that feels lovely on a hot day.
While there is a trail leading up the craggy, slippery rocks to the top of the falls, attempting it is not recommended. Why ruin the day with a serious injury in a remote location? Swimming in the pool beneath the falls is also strictly prohibited.
Visit www.mass.gov to learn more about Bash Bish Falls State Park.
A Fall Foliage Day-Trip
It would be very easy to make a fall-foliage day-trip of your visit to Bash Bish Falls.
Bash Bish Falls are located in the Mount Washington State Forest, a 4,000-acre preserve with over 30 miles of trails, including the South Taconic Trail. Mount Everett State Reservation and Taconic State Park are also in the immediate area, offering no end of natural delights.
Waterfall enthusiasts will be happy to know that the Berkshires are home to many beautiful waterfalls beyond Bash Bish. Visit www.newenglandwaterfalls.com for a list of Berkshires waterfalls.
Let us know what things you’d like to do or see during your Berkshires getaway. Applegate Inn loves sharing the Berkshires with our guests!