Driving Tours Mt. Greylock - North Berkshire

Mt. Greylock - North Berkshire

This scenic tour of northern Berkshire County is on the western edge of the Mohawk Trail and starts in the city of North Adams at City Hall, Route 8 and Marshall Street.

First visit the vast mill complex on Marshall Street, MASS MoCA. MASS MoCA is a major center for the arts and multicultural disciplines featuring performances, educational resources and contemporary art exhibits. Just south of City Hall on Route 8 and Furnace Street is the Western Gateway Heritage State Park. This park is located in the old freight yard district. It is part of a statewide system of urban parks. Nineteenth century structures have been renovated to house exhibits, shops, and restaurants. The Visitors Center highlights the rich railroad and industrial heritage of North Adams and the building of the Hoosac Tunnel. Exit from Western Gateway Heritage State Park onto Route 2 and taking a left, travel west to Notch Road.

A sign shows the entrance to Mt. Greylock State Reservation. The reservation is open May through October. It is the highest peak in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts at 3,491 feet. The road was closed for repairs in 2007-09 but is now open. Along the many switchbacks are lookout points that allow the traveler excellent views of Berkshire vistas. At the summit, there is the 90 foot high granite Veterans Memorial Tower, a commemoration to all Massachusetts’ war dead. On a clear day from the tower’s observation platform, you can see Mt. Monadnock, New Hampshire, the Green Mountains in Vermont, the Adirondacks and Catskills in New York, and Mt. Everett in the southern Berkshires. Bascom Lodge, at the summit, has food and lodging. Guided hikes, walks, and nature tours are available.

Take a southerly route, descending into the town of Lanesborough on Route 7. Turn east on Summer Street in Lanesborough and continue to the village of Berkshire on Route 8. Then take Route 8 north along Cheshire Lake with its scenic overlook. Arriving in Adams, a Victorian textile mill town, visit the historic Quaker Meeting House, taking a left from Route 8 onto Maple Street to the cemetery. The Meeting House is open for tours on Sunday afternoons 1 to 4 p.m. July 5 to Oct. 11. Returning to Route 8 see the plaque on Park Street on the Greylock Credit Union Building which honors Susan B. Anthony, who was born in Adams in 1820. A side trip to 67 East Road is the recently opened Susan B. Anthony Birthplace Museum.

Continue north to North Adams, follow signs on Route 8 to Natural Bridge State Park. This white marble formation is over 500 million years old. A 30 foot marble bridge spans a 60 foot deep chasm. Unusual flora and fauna are found in this park which is open June to November. Next to the Natural Bridge State Park is The Contemporary Artists Center and Gallery, offering a unique environment for the creation of contemporary art and its exhibition. The Gallery has summer exhibitions only. Retrace your steps into the city of North Adams. The Fall Foliage Festival is held the last weekend in September through the first weekend in October. North Adams celebrates the 4th of July with a Fireworks Extravaganza at 9:30pm at Noel Field Rt. 8, North Adams. Downtown North Adams has a unique Main Street, boasting five churches clustered on the eastern end.