As you likely know, United States currency is printed on a kind of fabric, not paper made from wood. It is made of recovered rags, known as rag paper: a combination of cloth and linen cloth. The resulting material is stronger, tougher, and feels better than wood-based paper.
You may have also noticed the red and blue fibers in the background of your U.S. bills. The very nature of rag paper makes it easier to add these and other kinds of security elements. Crane & Co are the only ones to have made this special paper for the United States for 140 years and counting.
Read the rest of this page »
Summer – what a wonderful time to be out of doors! One of the best ways we can think of, of really getting out into the great outdoors while you’re in the Berkshires would be on a guided Housatonic River canoe trip.
Most of the time, we find ourselves looking wistfully out at the calm, flowing waters of the Housatonic river as it wends its way past us through the lush and beautiful Berkshires’ landscape. To really enjoy it, there’s nothing quite like getting out onto its smooth surface with nothing but quiet assurance of manpower to guide your gentle journey along its course.
Read the rest of this page »
Red Chair has arrived in the Berkshires!
What, you may be asking, is the ‘Red Chair?’ Well, here is a description from the Red Chair Travels website that will clarify:
“The Red Chair is a symbol, a movement, a phenomenon, a happening. Not just a simple wooden chair, this bright red vintage object is moving from place to beautiful place, exploring the best of New England all this year.
Move aside Flat Stanley, lie down garden gnome, hang yourself out to dry traveling pants… the Red Chair has arrived and captured the hearts and minds of America. This humble desk accoutrement, crimson paint peeling and wooden legs wobbling, will journey around New England building connections, meeting innkeepers and generally exploring some of the most beautiful corners of our country.”
Sounds fun, right? The Red Chair’s visit to our Berkshires bed and breakfast was a great way for us to share with travelers all that the Berkshires has to offer as well as our thriving little community of Lee. Here are the places we brought the Red Chair:
Read the rest of this page »
Bridges are inherently picturesque, and covered bridges even more so. The engineering and craftsmanship required to suspend materials over rivers, streams, and gorges is often remarkable to behold. This seems to be doubly true when it comes to covered bridges.
Humans have constructed bridges – and covered them – for thousands of years. As bridge engineering and materials have changed, the need to take the time and expense to cover bridges has been reduced. Most of the old covered bridges that were used in the United States have long since been replaced with modern, uncovered varieties. The result is that there are now fewer than 800 covered bridges in the country, where once they numbered in the tens of thousands.
It’s worth taking a little side trip to see a covered bridge, if you happen to be anywhere near one. As it happens, our Berkshires Bed and Breakfast is near a covered bridge – the Upper Sheffield Bridge over the Housatonic River. It’s about fifteen miles south of our Lee Massachusetts Bed and Breakfast.
Vehicular traffic is not permitted on the bridge, but visitors are allowed to walk across it. It’s fun to stand in the middle of the bridge on rainy days, safely dry as you listen to the river under your feet and the rain above your head. It’s also quite an experience to walk across the bridge on wintery days, when the shelter is both needed and appreciated.
Covered bridges are part art, part architecture, and part historical artifact. If any of these areas interest you, check out the Upper Sheffield Bridge when next you stay at our Bed and Breakfast in the Massachusetts Berkshires.
Please see Sheffield Covered Bridge for directions.
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:
- 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.
An hour south of our Lenox MA bed and breakfast in Connecticut, the Appalachian Trail follows the Housatonic River for several miles. We hiked it in May, and were astounded by the multitude of colorful wildflowers along the trail and the lovely views of the river and valley.
Start west of Cornwall Bridge, and join the Appalachian Trail at Breadloaf Mountain (where you will delight in the views of the Housatonic River and Valley). Head south along the trail, descending into the valley where you’ll walk along the west bank of the wide Housatonic River. There are many good spots to stop and enjoy a picnic while enjoying expansive views. Leaving the AT near the town of Kent makes a great day hike.
We love helping guests of our Berkshires bed and breakfast hike part of the Appalachian Trail. To facilitate your experience, we’ll escort you to your end point, where you can drop your vehicle and catch a ride with us to your starting point.
By evening time, you’ll be ready to relax with a glass of wine and a plate of cheese at our bed and breakfast Lenox.