March is an exciting month for college students, because now comes the thing we’ve all been waiting for since we got back on campus in January, SPRAAANG BREAK (OK Sorry couldn’t help but make that reference forgive me, lets move on).
Unlike most of my friends, I won’t be south bound on a plane to Florida next week or some place that’s probably 40 degrees warmer than it is here in Massachusetts. If you’re with me in that group of people who are going to be stuck at home during break and fresh out of idea’s for stuff to do, check out The Thrifty College Travelers post “Spring Break Madness: When Your Destination is Home”, one of her suggestions is hiking.
So here I am suggesting to you five hikes you could do over your Spring break in Massachusetts, because if you can’t get a tan on the beach next week, your next best bet is getting a tan on the trail.
1. Royalston Falls
It’s short, kind of hard, and leads to a beautiful view, it’s a basic no-brainer to go here at some point during break. In total the trail in only 1.5 miles, it’s moderate hiking, but strenuous in certain places, because of the wet land, so watch your step. What makes the short trail so special is remote location of the waterfalls. If you’re feeling really ambitious you can make this into an overnight trip, there is a large group shelter which overlooks Falls Brook that is open to overnight hikers.
2. Mount Greylock
Greylock is located in the Berkshire Mountains, and is the highest mountain in the state of Massachusetts. I raced here once for cross country, not up the mountain, because that would just be terrible, but like towards the bottom and the less elevated parts. Mount Greylock offers all kinds of hiking options, from going deep into the woods to summits that will let you look on for miles. Actually, since the mountain encompasses five states, you can probably look out into all of them, which is pretty cool. Part of the Appalachian Trail runs through the Mount Greylock State Reservation, so you can get a head start on AT training if you ever want to take on that challenge.
3. The Parker River Wildlife Refuge
OK so if you can’t afford a plane ticket to somewhere tropical and still want to say you went to the beach over break this is the place to go. Located in Newburyport, the Park River Wildlife Refuge has more than 4,7000 acres of beach, dunes, cranberry bogs, forest, and freshwater marsh. Basically your options are endless for stuff to do here, this also takes up part of Plum Island, so if you tell your friends you went there it almost sounds like you went somewhere tropical and warm, because no one needs to know the truth.
4. Lincoln Conservation Land (Mount Misery)
Don’t let the name scare you, but tell your friends the name, because you’ll probably sound like a badass when you tell them you hiked a mountain called “Mount Misery” over break. There’s actually nothing miserable about this place, the trails are quiet and easy. For an easy trail it has a lot of things going on, natural forests, a farm, a small “summit”, a marsh, and views of the Sudbury River and Fairhaven Bay.
5. Race Brook Falls
Here’s another trail with a waterfall, because you can never see too many of those right? Located in Sheffield, MA, where you start on the trail it doesn’t have that typical trail head look, it’s more of a tiny rest area, but don’t let that stop you. Race Brook is a beautiful waterfall, that has three tiers to it, but most people only see one, because they can’t hike up the steeper trails or they don’t realize the falls go up further. During the winter it can look like a winter wonderland, even though it’s March and it’s snowing as I’m writing this, you still have a chance to see it in its winter wonderland glory.
If none of these appeal to you check out some of my other trail posts and find one!
Now get out there and hike, so you have some stories to tell your friends when you get back from break.