Tis the Season for … Mud.
Bet you didn’t know that in the Berkshires there are actually five distinct seasons – Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall and … Mud Season.
Yep. Mud Season in the Berkshires. We think of it as a necessary evil – the price we pay for all of those gorgeous summers. It usually comes in early Spring with the melting snows and can last for weeks. It’s often accompanied by grey skies, rain and well – mud. Bottom line – it can be yucky – for hikers and anyone whose is really into outdoor activities. So here are a few things to do that don’t require trudging through lots of wet earth. And cheer up. Mud Season can disappear before you know it.
Take a Hike. Okay. I told you hiking is a risky proposition during Mud Season. But now I ‘m telling you to hike Mount Greylock. Mount Greylock is the highest point in Massachusetts with magnificent, panoramic views of five states. Avoid the mud to your knees dilemma by tackling the 4.4 mile paved by-way to the summit. The road is closed to vehicular traffic until May, so you don’t have to worry about dodging cars careening around the curves.
Eat. Long lines are synonymous with the summer dining season in the Berkshires. But now is the perfect time to grab a seat at your favorite place. Less crowds. Shorter wait times. Excellent, relaxed service. Check out some of our faves like Prairie Whale in Great Barrington, Nudel and Alta in Lenox and Mezze in Williamstown just to name a few.
A spirited tour. Ah. There’s nothing quite like a good, cold beer …. or a glass of local wine … even in Mud Season. In fact, the Berkshires have some of New England’s finest local distilleries, wineries and breweries. Try a few tastings at Berkshire Mountain Distillers, Balderdash Wine Cellars and Bright Ideas Brewery among others.
High and dry. Mud Season doesn’t mean you can’t get outdoors and have some fun. But instead of sinking into mud as thick as quicksand, rise above it. Avoid that sinking feeling by rising above the mud. Take to the sky at adventure courses such as RambleWild. They offer zip lines and ropes courses for all ages. Begins early April.
Two Wheel Travel. While mountain biking is left to the fearless and skilled sport enthusiasts in the mud season, you can savor the sights and sounds of Spring just by riding through Berkshire towns and back roads. Or head straight for the Ashtuwillticook Rail Trail. Rentals are available throughout the county at Berkshire Bike and Board, Berkshire Outfitters or Village Bike Rentals.
Visit a Museum. Escape the mud and take in some incredible art at one of the many museums that dot our cultural landscape. Norman Rockwell. MASS MoCA. The Clark. From French Impressionism to the ultimate in modern art, there’s something for every taste imaginable. Check for special offers too. The Clark offers free admission during the spring season.
Spend money. There are scores of antique dealers and galleries, arts and crafts shops, and clothing stores in the Berkshires. Buy that special one-of-a-kind item or just window shop. Maybe even make a special trip to the Premium Outlets in Lee.
Throw an indoor picnic. Not really into spreading a blanket over clumps of wet mud and grass? Browse local specialty food shops like Spirited, Nejaime’s and Guido’s. They’re the perfect place for unique food and drink opportunities. Then just find a warm and dry place, indoors, spread your blanket out and empty the basket. Use your ingenuity to find the perfect spot.
Enjoy the great indoors. Just stay in and enjoy an old-fashioned staycation. Never leave the hotel. Relax. Kick back in a cozy robe. Order room service. Read. Sleep. Swim in a heated pool. Come up for air with a few drinks in the bar. Enjoy some live music. And most of all, spend some quality time away from the hustle and bustle.
Embrace the mud. Really. Canyon Ranch offers a detoxifying seaweed mud wrap. This treatment combines a dry, gentle exfoliation and the nourishment of French green clay and seaweed to cleanse your skin and improve skin tone and elasticity. Top it off with a soothing scalp and foot massage.
Yes. You can survive Mud Season in the Berkshires. And have fun doing it.