Discover The MOHAWK TRAIL
The MOHAWK TRAIL aka “The Trail” and ” The Indian Path” is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year.
Started in 1914, it stretches from Albany to Boston with the main stem from Pittsfield, MA to Williamstown, through N.Adams, then East for a two hour tour to U.S. 495, all on SR 2. It’s a 65 mile jaunt and we covered it in our new 2015 VW Jetta 1.8, a car the loves to ride and with power to spare. A 4-wheel drive that gets more than 30 mpg on the highway and nearing 25 mpg on Rt.2. Included Blue tooth connections and Sirius Satellite Radio. Comfortable ride.We recommend it
Here are the highlights of our recent tour and a suggested itinerary:
Start in Pittsfield, MA, to get your bearings at the Berkshire
Visitors Bureau before heading out to Williamstown, MA, where you’ll find the CLARK Art Institute which offers a larger assembly of Renaissance and Classical Art, Americana, and historical memorabilia. From there it’s a short 10 minute drive to N.Adams, where you’ll hit MassMoca, a mammoth enclave of Contemporary Art featuring leading artists from both side of the Atlantic. Anselm Kiefer’s Post Modern exhibition is a political statement on the events. Endorsed by the Hall Art Foundation, it’s a three-part staging through February, not-to-be missed.The town has proliferated into a sizable art colony salvaging many of the old industrial buildings of the late 19th century.
Take in Mt.Greylock, the New England Natural Bridge and the Hairpin Turn n Rt. 2 while you’re there.It’s a scenic ride through a forest of color bursting through Thanksgiving. In Adams visit the birthplace of suffragette and civil right advocate, Susan B. Anthony, the Quaker Meeting House and St.Stanislaus Kostka Catholic Church, a magnificently restored edifice built by Polish immigrants at the turn of the Century. Heading East you’ll want to locate the Hoosac Tunnel off Rt. 2, now an historic site. From here visit the Elk Memorial in Florida, built in 1923 as a memorial to the Order of Elks, a national organization saluting their members who were killed in the First WW.. In Charlemont take in the “hail to Sunrise” Monument, a tribute to the American Indian. And for sports there’s Zoar, a full service supplier of sports apparel, sports equipment, tours and.programmer of Whitewater Rafting, Zip-Line, and cross-country events and excursions using professional guides. For more on Zoars go to their website: www.myzipline.com.The Mohawk Trading Post on Rt. 2 is also an interesting place to shop American Indian Arts & Crafts. Our next stop was Shelburne Falls where the famous Bridge of Flowers is located. Built as a trolley bridge in 1908 to ferry people to Buckland, the adjoining town, it’s now a garden of delights with more than 500 annuals and perennials. It’s an incredible walking site. From here you can see Salmon Falls and the Geological Potholes dating back to prehistoric times. Absolutely worth the visit. The Baker Pharmacy up the street is ladled with old world charm. Ice cream sodas start at $1.25. Wow! Our next stop was Greenfield Village, an early-to-late 18th century Dutch and English settlement. It’s an historic site made up of a couple of dozen early America homes now fully preserved and maintained. It’s a walk-around type of place. Bring your cameras and footwear here and stop in at the Visitors Center for a guided tour.The historic Old Deerfield Inn n the main street is a good place to have a short lunch or dinner; lodging too. Try www.historic-deerfield.org for more info. Going north there’s the Kringle Candle Co. & Restaurant in Bernardston, a find for holiday shopping and good ‘ol Yankee cooking. And there’s the French Bridge in Millers Falls, the Swift River Historical Society in New Salem, the 1761 Old Mill Restaurant & Pub in Westminster, Sholan Farms in Leominster, Johnny Appleseed’s birthplace,
and the Fruitlands Museum in Harvard. Before leaving “The Trail” we hit some of the best Farmers Markets in New England. They’re everywhere. In Williamstown, N. Adams Ashland, Bernardston and Greenfield on Saturday, in Shelburne on Friday, in Orange,and Conway on Thursday, and in Turners Falls on Wednesday.
Approximate Distances :
From Williamstown to Boston: 150 miles
From NYC to Williamstown: 160 miles
From: Philadelphia, PA to Williamstown: 260 miles
From Montreal, CA to Williamstown:: 360 miles::
For more on the Mohawk Trail go to: www.mohawktrail.com or the Mass.Dept.of Tourism at: www.massvacation.com
Michael & Susi Raphael heartily recommend this tour.