Hiking in Shelburne Falls, from Bear Haven B&B

 

Hike #1: Wilcox Hollow on Deerfield River. Part of Mohawk-Mahican trail. Gentle, scenic river route. Somewhat muddy in wet weather. About 40 minutes round trip. Drive one mile to starting point.

 

1.                  Leaving Bear Haven B&B, drive right (south) on Mechanic Street.

2.                  At the end of Mechanic Street (two blocks), turn left on Bridge Street.

3.                  At the end of Bridge Street (three blocks), turn right on South Maple Street.

4.                  At the end of South Maple Street (1/4 mile), at the Sweetheart Restaurant, turn right onto the Route 2 highway.

5.                  Continue another mile, past the Mobil station and the State Police barracks on the right. Look for a self-storage facility on the left.

6.                  On the right side, opposite the entrance to the self-storage facility, park in the pullout. There is space for about five cars. The entrance to the Mohawk-Mahican trail is marked by a sign. There is a path down a short steep bank. The rest of the trail is mostly flat.

7.                  The trail is marked with signs on the trees. You will pass through a lovely forest path, then a scenic outlook high above the Deerfield River. The descent to the river has a few stairways. After crossing through a flat field (which can be muddy in wet weather) you will come to Wilcox Hollow on the river bank.

8.                  You can swim at Wilcox Hollow. The river is normally shallow and slow-running, but can rise quickly after rainfall or an upstream dam release.

 

Hike #2: Stone tower atop Mt. Massaemet. Scenic outlook. Steady climb, strenuous but not difficult or dangerous. Two hours round trip.

 

  1. Leaving Bear Haven B&B, go out front door and walk left (north) on Mechanic Street.
  2. Turn right at first corner (Church Street)
  3. Walk three blocks up to Maple Street. You will see Arms Academy (large red brick building) on your right.
  4. Turn left on Maple Street and look for tennis court (about 100 yards).
  5. From tennis court, walk straight uphill through tall grass (no path). Continue straight across Route 2 highway.
  6. Look for a paved road with a barrier gate. Walk around the gate and continue uphill about mile. You will see a large water tank on your right.
  7. Continue straight uphill through the grass (no path) and look for a path into the woods.
  8. This path, which leads to the top of the mountain, is easy to follow. Stay on the main path all the way (about 45 minutes from the water tank).
  9. You can climb the stone tower at the top of the mountain, for an excellent view of Shelburne Falls and the surrounding hills. Return by the same route.