Enjoy a Day of Fun at the Berkshire East Mountain Resort

The winter season leaves a blanket of snow on the mountain slopes and peaks of the Berkshires. This time of year is ideal for cuddling up at a bed and breakfast retreat like Brook Farm Inn next to the fireplace with a good book. It’s also ideal for winter sports activities, such as skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing. The Berkshire East Mountain Resort is the perfect place to visit for all your outdoor winter sports! With 42 ski trails, you will have plenty of ground to cover as you make your way through the surrounding winter wonderland. Here are just a few things you will enjoy during a visit to the Berkshire East Mountain Resort.

Find out more about all of the exciting winter activities to enjoy Brook Farm Inn when you download our free Vacation Guide. It’s full of the best recommendations for things to see and do outdoors, like going skiing at the Berkshire East Mountain Resort!

Skiing & Snowboarding in the Berkshires

A favorite winter activity in the Berkshires is skiing. With pristine, snowy mountain slopes and gorgeous landscapes for miles and miles, it is the perfect place for a day in the powder. Whether you’re looking to show off your skills or learn a new sport, the Berkshire East Mountain Resort is a great destination. From winding beginner trails to daring descents, there is a wide range of ski trails for visitors to enjoy. Snowboarding is another great option provided at Berkshire East Mountain Resort. Bring your own equipment or rent it at the lodge! During January through March, there is also a special night skiing opportunity. You can hit the trails until 9 p.m. on Thursdays and until 10 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

Snow Tubing Park

If skiing and snowboarding aren’t quite your ideal winter activities, do not fear. The Berkshire East Mountain Resort also features a fantastic snow tubing park. This is a great option for those who are a little wary of the slopes. Here, you will get to make a much less drastic descent while still having fun with friends. You can even team up and ride together! You can secure a two-hour block for a morning or afternoon at the snow tubing park.

Non-Winter Fun

Winter isn’t the only time of year that you can have fun at this favorite outdoor resort! Berkshire East Mountain biking, the Berkshire East zip line, and more exciting activities are available in the spring, summer, and fall. Enjoy the Thunder Mountain Bike Park, Aerial Adventure Park, Berkshire Whitewater Rafting, and more!

After a Day at the Berkshire East Mountain Resort, Relax at Brook Farm Inn

Brook Farm Inn is the perfect bed and breakfast retreat after a long day on the slopes. Settle into one of our luxurious yet homey accommodations for a quiet evening relaxing. Or, enjoy our rejuvenating spa services to ease your tired muscles after skiing or snowboarding. After a peaceful night’s rest, wake up in the morning to a delicious gourmet breakfast. We hope to see you soon in the beautiful Berkshires!

How to Plan the Best Ski Trip to Jiminy Peak Mountain Resort

Winter is here, which means it is time for some outdoor sports and activities in the snow! The Jiminy Peak Mountain Resort is a wonderful place to visit for skiing, snowboarding, and more. Discover winter in the Berkshires with a trip to this mountain resort for a day of adventure on the slopes. Bring your own equipment or rent some at the lodge, and look forward to racing through the white powder. Just a half hour away from Brook Farm Inn, the Jiminy Peak Adventure Park is a fun way to spend part of your vacation. Whether you’re a beginner or expert, there is a place for you on the slopes!

Find out more about all of the great outdoor activities near Brook Farm Inn when you download our free Vacation Guide. It’s full of the best recommendations for great seasonal adventures, like skiing at the Jiminy Peak Mountain Resort.

Hit the Slopes at the Jiminy Peak Mountain Resort!

If you’re looking for an exciting outdoor expedition during your stay in the Berkshires, then head to the Jiminy Peak Mountain Resort. Here, you can choose from a variety of options for your winter sporting escapade. If you plan on skiing each day of your trip, then you can purchase a 2-day, 3-day, 4-day, or 5-day pass at the resort. You might be making a vacation out of it, because the skiing here sure is top-notch! You can also purchase a 4-hour or 8-hour pass if you only plan on skiing for one day of your vacation. Holiday rates apply Dec. 25 through Jan. 2, Jan. 14-16, and Feb. 18-26, so you can plan ahead if you want to avoid the heightened price. Once you’ve purchased your lift tickets, then hop on for the ride up to the top of the mountain. Rent your gear at the resort, and then it’s time to hit the slopes!

Rent Your Skis, Boots, and Poles

Though you are allowed to bring your own equipment, there is also rental gear available at the Jiminy Peak Mountain Resort. The rental shop is located in the Thatcher Building in the upper courtyard of Village Center, and carries top brands for skis, boots, poles, and cold weather clothing. Once you are all geared up, then you are officially ready to make your debut in the fresh powder!

More About the Mountain

Jiminy Peak Mountain has some impressive skiing stats. It is 2,380 feet in elevation and 1,150 feet in vertical rise. The ski area offers almost 168 acres and 45 trails for your enjoyment. There are even 9 lifts to take you to just the right points for your ski adventure. Be sure to check the snow report before hitting the slopes. You will want to know what snowfall awaits before you travel to the ski resort.

Stay With Us During Your Ski Adventures!

Make Brook Farm Inn your Berkshires retreat during your skiing escapades. If you plan on spending your entire vacation slicing through the snow at Jiminy Peak Mountain Resort, then book your stay at Brook Farm Inn. Our charming bed and breakfast will be the perfect place to come back to at the end of a long winter’s day on the mountain. Relax by the fire, snuggle up in your comfortable bed, and fall asleep blissfully. Then, wake up in the morning to a delicious breakfast to give you energy for your next day on the slopes!

Country Fair & Quilt Days at Hancock Shaker Village

Just down the road from Brook Farm Inn, on September 24th & 25th you can enjoy a quintessential New England pastime: the Country Fair and Quilt Days at Hancock Shaker Village: “A Heritage Farm Untouched by Time.” A farmers’ market, craft show and sale, antique tractors and engines, and chicken races (yep, chicken races!) are just a few of the offerings.

The “Harvest of Quilts,” a juried show, will include over 55 antique and modern pieces. Vote for your favorite and watch quilting demos. For youngsters there will be hay piles, face painting, balloon art, beanbag toss, sack races, and more.

We have coupons for discounted admission to the Fair, for the first ten guests who request them!

Then return to Brook Farm Inn, where tea is served on Friday and Saturday afternoons, and your hosts look forward to welcoming you back to your Berkshires home away from home.

3 of the Best Places to Go Apple Picking in Western MA

Apple picking in Western MA is a favorite autumn activity. During October, apples are ripe for the picking here near Brook Farm Inn. We are surrounded by some beautiful orchards in every corner of our state, but Western MA really stands out as an apple picking destination. There’s no better way to get into the autumn spirit! This is a great date activity for a romantic vacation with your significant other. It is also a great place to go with friends and to indulge in your just-picked fruits right after either as a refreshing, juicy treat or as a warm cider. It will be so much more rewarding to enjoy those apples after you have picked them yourself! Here are a few of our favorite places to go apple picking in Western MA.

For all of our favorite places to go apple picking in Western MA, be sure to download our free Berkshires Vacation Guide!

3 Places to Go Apple Picking in Western MA

Hilltop Orchards in Richmond

There are so many great locations to go apple picking in Western MA. However, if you’re looking for a place very close to Brook Farm, then Hilltop Orchards is a great choice. Just over 15 minutes away, Hilltop Orchards offer 26 different types of apples, with most available for the pick-your-own option. There are also bags of apples on sale at the Farm Winery Store. To keep with the fall festivities, Hilltop Orchards also offers hayrides on weekends through the orchards. You can pick anywhere from a half-peck to a half-bushel for a price range between $6 and $18. After you’re done in the orchards, you can then come try a drink at the on-site Furnace Brook Winery. Many of the apples grown in the orchards are used to produce fresh pressed cider and the award-winning Johnny Mash hard cider. Try one of these varieties, or indulge in a fresh fruit pie, scone, or apple cider donut from the Farm Winery Store.

Roberts’ Hillside Orchard in Granville

One of the best places for apple picking in MA is Roberts’ Hillside Orchard in Granville. Here, you will have the chance to select over 25 varieties of apples, peaches, raspberries, and blackberries each fall. Apples include MacIntosh, Empire, Red Delicious, Honey Crisp, Gala, Macoun, and more! The best part about this orchard, however, is the family history. The land was granted by King George II of England back in 1740, and the Roberts family built the still-working farm that stands there today. Pick your own apples to become just a piece of that history!

Outlook Farm in Westhampton

Another great location for apple picking in Western MA is Outlook Farm in Westhampton. Though it is a bit more of a drive from Brook Farm Inn (about an hour), Outlook Farm is renowned for its great fall apple picking! Outlook not only boasts some beautiful orchards and land but also a year-round farm market with fresh meats. You can also sample some hard cider and craft beer during your visit, sometimes accompanied by live music! This homestead was built in 1781 and has served as a tavern, stagecoach stop, dance hall, and then farm. Now, surrounded by orchards and gardens and featuring a butcher shop, country store, and restaurant, Outlook Farm is quite popular. Enjoy picking your own unique, full-flavored apples on over 30 acres of orchards. Then, indulge in a few old-time recipes in the country store, including apple pie made from scratch!

Stay at Brook Farm Inn

Apple picking in Western MA is just one of many outdoor activities you can enjoy throughout the entire year! Here at Brook Farm Inn, we provide a retreat in the beautiful Berkshires, which offer so much to explore. For more to see and do in the area, download our free vacation guide. Hope to see you soon!

Why You Need to Visit the Beautiful Kennedy Park in Lenox, MA

When visiting the Brook Farm Inn, consider a picnic lunch along with an outdoor adventure at Kennedy Park in Lenox, MA. This beautiful park is a favorite place to visit in the area, serving as a multi-use community space. When you visit Kennedy Park in Lenox, MA, you will discover hikers, skiers, mountain bikers, and horseback riders. The park features great trails for all of these activities, extending in all directions. From the Kennedy Park trails to the Kennedy Park Lenox MA Monument, there are plenty of attractions to enjoy during your trip! Here are just a few features that show why you need to visit Kennedy Park in Lenox, MA.

For all our favorite things to do in Lenox, MA, including Kennedy Park, be sure to download our free Lenox, MA, Travel Guide!

Premier Location of Kennedy Park in Lenox, MA

Kennedy Park in Lenox, MA, is just five minutes from the city center, giving you the ultimate convenience as well as a series of amazing paths to journey along. There are some great views included also! The proximity to town is also ideal if you forget to pack a lunch or forget any supplies. You can also take a lunch break in town if you desire after a full morning of hiking.

Kennedy Park Trails

Mountain biking is one of the most popular activities in Kennedy Park. This area is one of the best for mountain biking and running in Berkshire County. One reason is because the well-maintained trails have not been destroyed by four-wheelers (which are not allowed on the trails). The mostly smooth trails are also ideal for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in colder weather. Start off with an easy, shady trail in the park. Then, extend your journey on a mountain bike or on horseback. Just a few trails to enjoy at and around Kennedy Park in Lenox, MA, include the 7-mile Kennedy Park Short Loop, 13-mile Kennedy Park Medium Loop, 13-mile The Finger, and 3-mile Burbank Trail from Olivia’s Overlook. Be sure to view a Kennedy Park map for all available trails! There are quite a few (though they are well marked), so be sure to stay on course.

The Arcadian Shop

Before you embark on one of these trails, stop by the Arcadian Shop. Here, you will be able to park and will also garner some information about the trails and what you will encounter. You can also purchase some necessary gear here, in case you forgot anything. Athletic clothing, footwear, skis, and snowshoes are just a few items you will find at the store. After your hike, ride, or all-around adventure, indulge in some coffee and pastries back here at the shop.

Stay at Brook Farm Inn

Kennedy Park in Lenox, MA, offers a variety of trails for a multitude of activities. Whether you desire a quiet, peaceful stroll or a rowdy expedition through the forest, there is a trail for you! After a morning, afternoon, or full day of adventure at Kennedy Park, come back to Brook Farm Inn for a soothing Berkshires getaway. Enjoy our spa services, gourmet breakfast, and charming accommodations. You can also appreciate our extensive library and poetry readings! Plan your vacation in advance by downloading our free vacation guide.

Why You’ll Love October Mountain in the Fall

What more fitting place for an autumnal hike than October Mountain? This beautiful feature in the central Berkshires offers a gorgeous state forest full of fall foliage during the autumn season. Glowing red, burning orange, and golden yellow hues light up the entire mountain range in a glorious display that will leave you short of breath. Here are just a few things you should know about October Mountain, including some great activities you can enjoy during the fall.

October Mountain History

The name for October Mountain is, in fact, attributed to American author and poet Herman Melville. In his Pittsfield home, Melville could view the stunning hills in the distance, and the scenery during the fall particularly impressed him. He first mentioned October Mountain briefly in a short story from 1853, titled “Cock-a-doodle-doo.” Later, he wrote another short story called “October Mountain,” in which the official name originated. The land itself once belonged to the estate of William C. Whitney, who was President Grover Cleveland’s Secretary of the Navy. It was purchased in 1915 by a group of individuals and donated to the state for preservation purposes. It was also the harboring grounds for Gideon Smith during the Revolutionary War. Smith was discovered to be harboring a British prisoner-of-war. He hid in a gorge until the end of the war that was later called Tory Cave

Is October Mountain Haunted?

There are some folklore and ghost tales surrounding October Mountain. Whether this stems from its Halloween-centric name or the apparently haunted 19th-century cemetery among the trees, it is not certain. At this cemetery, visitors have been said to hear strange humming sounds and see a ghoulish girl in a white dress among the tombstones. The girl is thought to be Anna Pease, who died in 1829 at the age of 10 and is the only female child buried in the graveyard.

However, more than ghosts are said to haunt October Mountain. In 1983, two Pittsfield men were enjoying a picnic near an old boy scout camp site on Felton Lake when they saw a bizarre creature in the woods. It was described as brown, six to seven feet tall, and featuring glowing eyes. A similar sighting was later reported in 1989 when a hiker saw something large move among the trees about 100 yards away. He claimed to have seen the same type of creature covered in fur with a human face and very long arms and grubbing for roots and insects.

U.F.O.s have even made the list of bizarre sightings on October Mountain. In 1970, a boy scout saw two strange lights hovering in the sky. He claimed that they seemed to be checking a particular spot in the forest over and over again. After five minutes, they supposedly launched vertically into the sky at an extremely high speed. These mysteries are a part of the lure to October Mountain and part of its history.

October Mountain Hiking

The 16,500-acre expanse makes October Mountain the largest state forest in the state of Massachusetts.There are opportunities for camping, hiking, and more among the glorious forested expanse. An October Mountain State Forest trail map reveals a variety of paved and unpaved paths. There are also snowshoe and skiing trails available, as well as trails for multi-use, including snowmobiles. Some are even plowed in the winter time to make them more accessible. The Appalachian Trail also runs through the October Mountain State Forest and is available for foot travel only.

Stay in Lenox at Brook Farm Inn

Among your October Mountain hiking adventures and ghost-hunt explorations, you will need a place to stay. Indulge in luxurious accommodations at the Brook Farm Inn. From massages to soothe your aching muscles to a protein-filled breakfast each morning to jumpstart your day, relax. We have a variety of rooms to suit your particular traveling needs. For more information on what to do in the Berkshires during your visit, download our free vacation guide!

What You Need to Know About Hiking and Exploring Lenox Mountain

When exploring the beautiful Berkshires during your stay at Brook Farm Inn, don’t leave out Lenox Mountain. Located in the Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary, Lenox Mountain rises along the horizon at 2,126 feet. The majestic mountain offers some truly stunning panoramic views as well as a variety of hiking trails for your forest escapades. Enjoy the changing leaves in the autumn or the chirping birds in the springtime as you make your way to the peak. There are plenty of natural features and unique plantlife and wildlife to keep things interesting on your adventure. There are also a variety of hikes based on your level. You can opt for an easy loop or a more strenuous vertical session to the summit. Here are just a few things you will experience during your expeditions on Lenox Mountain.

For even more hiking, and a complete list of Things to Do in the Berkshires, Download our Free Vacation Guide!

About Lenox Mountain

The wildflowers are in bloom. The serene clouds float overhead, soaring in between green leaves and tree branches as you look skyward. You look down to the dirt path below, dusted with small rocks, fallen leaves, and new undergrowth peeking out of the soil. You’re ready to hike Lenox Mountain!

Hiking Lenox Mountain

The Pleasant Valley Wildlife Sanctuary offers seven miles of walking trails as well as three favorite loops to explore. The Yokun/Beaver Lodge Trails Loop begins at an easy 1.5-mile walk that will take you just about an hour to complete. You will get some great views of the northern beaver ponds and some views of the Lenox Mountain ridge. This trail is ideal for birding. However, if you’re looking to get your feet on the mountain itself, you will have to take a bit more of a strenuous hike. A 3-mile round trip trail ascends Lenox Mountain in an 850-foot vertical climb. This two-hour trail is the Ledges/Overbrook Loop. It could be a challenge, but the panoramic views from the peak ofthe mountain are worth the tired muscles. Enjoy a vista of Mount Greylock to the north, the Taconic Range to the west, and the Catskill Mountains to the southwest. There are some steep slopes on this trail that deserve caution. For example, the Ledges Trail should only be hiked up and not down because of the slippery slope.

Other Activities on Lenox Mountain

Lenox Mountain isn’t just a great space for hiking. It is also ideal for snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and mountain biking. The main trafficked loop around Lenox Mountain is accessible from April until October, while other areas are open during the winter months. Bartlett’s Apple Orchard is another great place to visit on Lenox Mountain. With 52 acres of orchards that produce about 20,000 bushels, you can pick a snack for the trails or enjoy some delicious fresh apple cider and baked goods.

Stay at Brook Farm Inn

After your Lenox Mountain adventures, come back to Brook Farm Inn for a relaxing getaway. You can enjoy our massage services after a long day of hiking or other strenuous outdoor activities. After a rejuvenating experience, settle down in your comfortable accommodations for the evening. Then, wake up in the morning to a delicious complimentary breakfast to start your day off right. For more places to explore in Lenox, MA, download our free vacation guide. We hope to see you soon!

How to Enjoy Bousquet Ski Area in Pittsfield, MA, in the Summer

Who says you can’t go to a ski resort in the summertime? Here at Brook Farm Inn in Lenox, MA, we are just nine minutes away from the Bousquet Ski Area in Pittsfield, MA. This 200-acre ski area on the summit of Yokun Ridge is a highlight of the Berkshires, from wintry fresh powder to summertime water slides and more. Though you have to retire your skis in the summertime, you don’t have to retire the fun. At the Bousquet Ski Area in Pittsfield, MA, you will find plenty of warm weather activities to enjoy after the snow melts. The ski area is transformed into a recreational park, including six water slides, an activity pool, zip-line, golf course, mini-golf, bungy-trampoline, and climbing wall! Here are some of the best ways to enjoy the Bousquet Ski Area in Pittsfield, MA, in the summer.

Summer Activities at the Bousquet Ski Area in Pittsfield, MA

Adventure Ropes Course

Bousquet Ski Area in Pittsfield, MA, offers an adventure park and zip line. Climb, swing, and balance among the treetops! Visitors can choose from three different course difficulties, with over 40 elements. Beginners can start out with the low-to-the-ground courses, while experts might be hanging 30 feet in the air. Some of the featured elements in the adventure park include rope bridges, cargo nets, and ladders. Every course is guided, and a minimum height of four feet is a requirement for safety reasons. The zip line is another popular feature. Let your adrenaline rush during the 700-foot ride, soaring at 40 feet above the ground. Be sure to wear closed-toed shoes during your adventures at the adventure park of the Bousquet Ski Area in Pittsfield, MA.

Waterslides

The Bousquet water park is a great summer feature! Cool off with some pool water and have a blast doing it. The water park features three thrilling water slides, along with an activity pool with three smaller slides. Whether you’re searching for a leisurely day cooling off from the heart or want a splash of excitement, the water park is a great place to be. There is also a special deal on Mondays where you can have access to the waterslides, activity pool, and a round of mini golf for just $10!

Miniature Golf & Disc Golf

Disc golf is a favorite at the Bousquet Ski Area in Pittsfield, MA. The 18-hole disc golf course offers some fun and challenging opportunities. Stir up some competition among your vacation buddies with a round, all while enjoying the natural outdoor beauty. The course will take you to the western ski trails and halfway up the mountain. You will receive some of the best views in the Berkshires! Mini golf is always a great way to have fun. Enjoy the 18-hole course located next to the slides.

Stay at Brook Farm Inn

After having a fun time at the Bousquet Ski Area in Pittsfield, MA, come back to the relaxing Brook Farm Inn. Enjoy this luxurious retreat, get an on-site massage to soothe your aching muscles, and snack on some afternoon treats. Then, after a restful night’s sleep, wake up in the morning to a gourmet breakfast! We can’t wait to see you here in the Berkshires. For more to do and see in the area, download our free vacation guide.

The Best Things About Furnace Brook Winery

The Furnace Brook Winery at Hilltop Orchards combines the roots and the product all in one place. The 200-year-old historic property in the Berkshires of Western Massachusetts features huge open spaces for apple picking, hiking, cross country skiing, and snowshoeing among other local activities. Gorgeous hilltop views expand across the orchards, and cider donuts are made daily from the farm’s cold pressed cider, along with other baked goods such as fruit pie, scones, and preserves. Come enjoy, of course, some delicious wine, along with other treats at the Furnace Brook Winery and Hilltop Orchards! Here are just a few of the best features of the Furnace Brook Winery.

Furnace Brook Winery Wines

At the Furnace Brook Winery, you will find a variety of beverages to partake in. One of these is an authentic hard apple cider using estate grown New England apples, such as McIntosh, Northern Spy, and Golden Russett. Dubbed the Johnny Mash, this cider became the initial success of the Furnace Brook Winery back in the late 1980s, before the trade was expanded to include a wide range of wines using varietal grapes. Some of these include Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Riesling, White Zinfandel, Sparkling Moscato, and Chardonnay. The French style cider, apple ice wine, and Johnny Mash are still made from Hilltop Orchards fresh pressed cider. Taste any of the Furnace Brook Winery wines for free, and add an additional 5 tastings for just $5!

Hilltop Orchards Apple Picking

An important ingredient of Furnace Brook Winery’s cider is Hilltop Orchards apples. During your visit to the winery, you can indulge in some apple picking along with a wine tasting. Open daily from 9am-5pm, Hilltop Orchards grows 26 different types of apples and incorporates eco-farming methods and IPM strategies to produce yummy, no-reside apples. Along with apple picking opportunities, there are free hayrides from 11am-5pm on Saturdays and Sundays from Labor Day until Columbus Day weekend.

Full Moon Hikes

The Furnace Brook Winery and Hilltop Orchards also offer full moon hikes and bonfires. The next one is set for June 18, 2016 at 8:30pm. These popular hikes are led by a guide and last about 1-1.5 hours, incorporating Native American traditions relating to moonlight. There will also be a bonfire, wine tasting, and entertainment following the full moon hike. Be sure to wear layers and the right footwear for this escapade, and only adults 21 and older are allowed. You can register on the website if you’re interested!

Furnace Brook Winery Weddings

Looking for a wedding venue? Check out the Furnace Brook Winery and Hilltop Orchards for a one-of-a-kind beautiful setting in the Berkshires. Along with weddings, the winery and orchards also host wine tasting parties with hors d’oeuvres, BBQs, S’mores roasts, elegant sit-down dinners under the stars, and picnics in the apple orchard!

After the Furnace Brook Winery

After your time at the Furnace Brook Winery, see what else the Berkshires have to offer! Then, once you’re done exploring for the day, return to Brook Farm Inn for an intimate evening at a luxurious bed and breakfast. Then, wake up refreshed and ready to embark on new adventures in the morning. For more to do in the area, download our free vacation guide!