Hiking Mount Greylock, the Highest Point in Massachusetts

Mount Greylock ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland

Mount Greylock ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland

Mount Greylock is the highest point in Massachusetts. The Appalachian Trail winds and wends up, down, across and over Mount Greylock for more than 11 gorgeous miles.

As with virtually all art and nature, you cannot imagine how beautiful it is until you see it for yourself.

Suzannah and I summited Greylock in my car. (Sorry, purists.) The climb was magnificent.

The Appalachian Trail to Mount Greylock ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland

The Appalachian Trail to Mount Greylock ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland

We hiked from the car to Bascom Lodge for lunch, views and to meet new friends. We scored big time.

Bascom Lodge, atop Mount Greylock, is at mile marker 1582.4, a mere 602.9 miles and 5.3 gazillion hills from Mount Katahdin (the end of the Trail) in Maine.

You can almost see it from the dining room at Bascom Lodge on a clear day.

The burgers were huge and delicious and the flow of fun folks was perfect.

That's where we met Jonathan Francia and Kristin Harnedy of Enfield, Connecticut.

Kristin Harnedy & Jonathan Francia at Bascom Lodge ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland

Kristin Harnedy & Jonathan Francia at Bascom Lodge ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland

Bascom Lodge on Mount Greylock ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland

Bascom Lodge on Mount Greylock ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland

Sure, they seemed normal at first. Everybody does. Jonathan is a computer geek who would love to create his own games.

Kristin, just like everybody else, hiked Mount Washington (the highest peak in the Northeastern United States) and loved it so much that she decided to make her second hike in Tanzania at Mount Kilimanjaro.

Yup. That Mount Kilimanjaro that took me 15 minutes to learn to spell. The one that's "the highest mountain in Africa and the highest free-standing mountain in the world."

Logan & Katie on Mount Greylock ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland

Logan & Katie on Mount Greylock ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland

Learn more About Mt. Washington Here

Hikers were trekking the many trails on Mount Greylock, including Logan and Katie from North Hepticr, MWT (if I read their handwriting correctly). At least, unlike me, they hike better than they write.

The Veterans War Memorial Tower graces the summit of Mount Greylock, dedicated by the state in 1933 to honor the memory of the men and women who gave their lives in service to America.

The hearty can climb the inner stairs of the 92-foot tower (there are 89 of them) for a 360-degree view of almost 80-miles on a clear day.

Hang gliders at Mount Greylock ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland

Hang gliders at Mount Greylock ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland

The hearty and probably insane fly all around the monument on hang-gliders.

Most of us will agree that it's probably best to stay as close as possible to the Appalachian Trail and the ground on which it rests.

On the other hand, jumping off a mountain and sailing on updrafts before landing (softly, I presume) on the floor of the valley below sounds far more appealing to me than scaling Mount Kilimanjaro, even if I could afford the airfare.

Hang-gliders at Mount Greylock ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland

Hang-gliders at Mount Greylock ~~ Photograph by Robert Sutherland

The road to the summit is well maintained. The road to the road to the summit is well hidden.

Even if you find the right road to the park entrance, you will be certain that you're not on the right road. You will only know you're on the right road if you arrive at the top of Mount Greylock. Apart from that advice, you're on your own.

We'll do another story on Bascom Lodge one of these days.

Our thanks to the Civilian Conservation Corps for their magnificent example of excellence in the construction of Bascom Lodge and portions of the park on Mount Greylock.

Background on Mount Greylock

The name, according to a brochure produced by the Mount Greylock State Reservation in 2004, "came into common use in the 1830s" but no one seems to know why. Perhaps we should have a "How Mount Greylock Got Its Name" contest? Anything is better than "nobody knows," in my humble opinion.

Greylock was the first state park in Massachusetts, designated in 1898, and it is a National Natural Landmark. It's on the National Register of Historic Places, along a road that is a Massachusetts Scenic Byway.

Add a visit to the Appalachian Trail on Mount Greylock to your bucket list.


Tags: Attractions, Appalachian Trail, Hiking, News, and Robert Sutherland Travel Writer

About the Author Robert Sutherland:
Robert Sutherland is a travel writer enjoying life. Robert has two adult daughters and six grandchildren.
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