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Massachusetts State Parks

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USA Parks
Berkshires Region
Pittsfield State Forest
Pittsfield State Forest © Rolf Hansen
Chickadee ©
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1041 Cascade St.
Pittsfield, Massachusetts   01201

Phone: 413-442-8992
Reservations: 413-442-8992
Stream, waterfalls and flowering shrubs abound in Pittsfield State Forest. 65 acres of wild azaleas are a profusion of pink blossoms in June. The forest has two camping picnic areas and a swimming beach. Fishermen frequent scenic Berry Pond, one of the highest natural water bodies in Massachusetts at 2,150 feet. The vista from the top of Berry Mountain is a striking panorama, a good place to watch the sun set.

30 miles of trails encourage visitors to escape into the quiet of the woods. The paved three-quarter mile Tranquility trail has become popular with wheelchair-users and other visitors who favor its smooth surface. A wheelchair-accessible picnic area and restroom are located nearby. Balance Rock is located in the northeast corner of Pittsfield State Forest. This 165-ton limestone boulder is balanced upon bedrock.

Berry Pond campground offers 13 rustic campsites atop Berry Mountain. Parker Brook campground, at the mountain's base, offers 18 sites with flush toilets. Neither location provides showers. An earthen dam at Lulu Brook holds clear, cold spring water perfect for a brisk swim. Visitors can picnic there or at Parker Brook. Campground office hours are 8am?10pm, and the regular camping season is from mid-May to mid-October.
History of the Area
Pittsfield State Forest is a public recreation area located in the city of Pittsfield, Massachusetts. It covers an area of approximately 11,800 acres in the western part of the state. The forest has a rich history that dates back centuries.

Before European settlement, the land that is now Pittsfield State Forest was home to Native American tribes, including the Mohicans. They utilized the forest for hunting, fishing, and gathering resources.

In the late 17th century, European settlers began to establish permanent settlements in the area. Pittsfield was first settled in 1752 and soon grew into a thriving community. The forested land surrounding the town was primarily used for timber extraction, farming, and later as a location for summer estates for wealthy residents.

In the early 20th century, the Massachusetts legislature recognized the importance of preserving forested land for its recreational, ecological, and aesthetic values. Pittsfield State Forest was established in 1924, becoming one of the first state forests in Massachusetts.

During the Great Depression in the 1930s, the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) played a significant role in developing and improving the state forest. CCC workers constructed roads, trails, campgrounds, and picnic areas. They also built the Berry Pond Dam, which created Berry Pond, a popular recreational spot within the forest.

Pittsfield State Forest continues to be a popular destination for outdoor activities. The forest offers various recreational opportunities, including camping, hiking, mountain biking, fishing, and picnicking. The Taconic Crest Trail, a long-distance hiking trail, traverses the forest, providing visitors with stunning scenic views of the surrounding area.

The forest has also been used for educational programs and environmental research. Organizations and schools often utilize the park's resources for nature studies and ecological research.

Pittsfield State Forest has a diverse history, ranging from its Native American origins to its establishment as a public recreation area. It remains an important natural and recreational resource in the region, attracting visitors from near and far.
 Hiking Trailyes
 Swimming Beachyes
 Bike Trailsyes
 Bridle Trailsyes
BoatingLaunch Rampsyes
1. Berry Pond Campground: This is the only campground within Pittsfield State Forest that offers 11 campsites with picnic tables and fireplaces, restrooms but no showers.

2. Pine Acres Family Camping Resort: Located a short drive from the forest, this resort provides RV sites as well as cabin rentals for those who prefer more comfort during their camping trip.

3. Fernwood Forest Campground Inc.: Also located near Pittsfield State Forest, it features tenting areas along with full hook-up RV spots in wooded settings to enjoy nature at its best.

4. Bonnie Brae Cabins & Campsites: Another nearby option offering both cabins and campsite options surrounded by beautiful scenery of The Berkshires region.

5. Berkshire Lake House: A little further away from the state park but still close enough for day trips into the forest while enjoying lakeside accommodation.

6. October Mountain State Park: About half an hour's drive south:east will take you to October mountain where there are additional camping facilities available including yurt accommodations!

7. Mt Greylock campground: If you're willing to travel slightly farther (about 45 minutes), Mt Greylock has stunning views and plenty of hiking trails alongside their rustic campsites.

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1. Taconic Crest Trail: This 35-mile long trail runs through the forest, offering stunning views of Berkshire County and beyond.

2. Lulu Brook Loop: A moderate difficulty level hike that is approximately 5 miles in length with a beautiful waterfall as its main attraction.

3. Berry Pond Circuit: An easy to navigate loop around Berry Pond which offers scenic water views throughout the entire journey; it's about two miles long making it perfect for beginners or families with children.

4. Turner Trail: Approximately three-miles-long, this moderately difficult trail features diverse terrain including rocky paths and steep inclines leading up to panoramic vistas at high elevations.

5. Squaw Peak Ramble via Indian Monument Road & Mohawk Trail Loop: It's an eight mile round trip featuring wildflowers during springtime along with historical sites like ancient Native American trails.

6. Tower Mountain Pathway: A challenging six:mile trek ascending Tower Mountain where hikers can enjoy breathtaking mountainous landscapes from atop fire tower lookout points.

7. Wild Acres Park Trails: These are several short interconnected pathways ideal for bird watching enthusiasts due their proximity to various wetland habitats within Pittsfield State Forest.

8. Burbank Park on Onota Lake: Offers multiple shorter hiking options alongside picturesque lake scenes suitable even for novice hikers.

9. Pittsfield Preserve North/South Loops: Two separate loops each measuring roughly four miles providing opportunities encounter wildlife such deer or foxes while traversing mixed hardwood forests.

10. Skyline Country Club Cross:Country Ski Area Paths: During winter months these become popular snowshoeing routes but they also serve well year-round hikes given their gentle slopes amidst serene woodland settings.

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Area Campgrounds
Bonnie Brae Cabins & Campsites
108 Broadway Street
Pittsfield, MA
Fernwood Forest Campground, Inc.
350 Longview Avenue
Hinsdale, MA
Hidden Valley Campground
15 Scott Road
Lanesboro, MA
Summit Hill Campground
34 Old Middlefield Road
Washington, MA
Area Fishing Related Businesses
Smitty's Bait & Tackle
200 North St
Dalton, MA
(413) 684-2244
Onota Boat Livery
463 Pecks Rd
Pittsfield, MA
(413) 443-1366
Area Cabins and Lodges
Vacation Village in the Berkshires
276 Brodie Rd
Hancock, MA
(413) 738-2000
Patriot Resorts
20 Williamstown Rd
Lanesboro, MA
(413) 236-5885
Berkshire Vista Resort Inc
312 Kittle Rd
Hancock, MA
(413) 738-5154

Pittsfield State Forest is located in the Berkshires in western Massachusetts.

From east or west: Take Massachusetts Turnpike (Rte I-90) to Exit 2 (Lee), to Route 20 west. Follow signs into park. Turn right on to Hungerford Street, then left on to West Street. Make a right on to Church Hill Street and follow the signs to the park. The Cascade Street entrance is hidden on the left side of the road, if you reach the Dan Casey Causeway then you have gone too far.

From north or south: Take Route 7 to Route 20 West. Follow signs into parks.

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Massachusetts State Parks