Bordering New York State and Vermont at the trail’s farthest
point west is Williamstown, home to Williams College which has an
attractive campus of green lawns and architecturally stunning
buildings. A major attraction in this town is the Sterling and Francine Clark Art
(or simply “The Clark”). This museum has
outstanding collections of French Impressionists, Old Masters and
American paintings. The Williams
College Museum of Art
has a collection of works spanning the
history of art but emphasizes modern and contemporary art, American
art and the art of world cultures.
Summer in Williamstown boasts the Tony Award-winning Williamstown Theatre Festival
presents classic and new works on the stages of the ’62
Center on the Williams College Campus.
If you are in town on a Sunday morning, the best place to brunch is
at The Williams Inn
Everyone in your party will find something delectable in their
Heading east, you will next encounter North Adams, and the
world-famous Massachusetts Museum
of Contemporary Art
or MASS MoCA. Housed in a restored 19th
Century factory, the museum displays some of the provocative and
evocative art of our time, with an emphasis on installations. Plus
it has a schedule of performing art events all year.
If you are more into nature, The
crosses the Mohawk Trail in North Adams and
along with it, automobile access to Mt. Greylock
Both expeditions give you close contact with the natural beauty of
the Berkshire Hills.
Continuing along Route 2 east you will climb the mountains,
specifically The Hoosac Range, that separate the Hudson River
Valley from the Connecticut River Valley. This isn’t a super
highway so expect to encounter sharp curves like The Hairpin Turn,
and steep inclines. Each breathtaking summit (and there are many)
has a view worth stopping for but you’ll see plenty of
scenery as the road, descending the mountain, is cupped in the
forested hills and paralleled by a rocky river.
The topography flattens out and before you reach downtown
Charlemont on the right is a memorial to the ancient Natives who
traveled this road. Hail to the Sunrise is a beautiful sculpture
honoring those who held sacred the daily miracle of sunrise and the
bounteous beauty of green life filling up the valley walls. In
downtown Charlemont is the restored Bissell Covered
reached by a very short trip north up Route 8A which is
near the Federated Church, the home of the Mohawk Trail Concerts Summer
Festival of Chamber Music
For a powerful adventure take a rafting trip down the Deerfield
River with one of the touring companies in Charlemont: Crab Apple Whitewater
. Or head for
the treetops and take a zip line canopy tour also at Zoar Outdoor.
By means of zip lines, sky bridges and rappels suspended in the
trees you fly through the forest on a thrill ride.