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Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Mountain Meadow Preserve

Drove over to Williamstown, Ma after work today to do some hiking at the Mountain Meadow Preserve.  A Trustees of Reservations property, there are several miles of hiking trails through open meadows and woods that extend to and just across the Vermont state line in Pownal.  There is a second entrance from the Vermont side to explore the 176 acre preserve is one should choose to.  Today's challenge would be staying warm in the bitter cold weather.
The parking lot is large enough to accommodate several cars and the trail begins just past a large kiosk with trail maps provided.  Upon starting the trail you will immediately begin ascending a small hill in a large clearing.
A climb up through mostly open fields leads to a very large meadow with very nice views of the Greylock Range to south and Taconic Range to the east.
Here is an excellent view of the Taconic Range from the meadow.  
Eastern views of the Taconics again.
The Greylock Range.
Looking across the meadow to the south reveals a magnificent vista of the Greylock Range.
After a wooded section of the trail there is a junction where right continues a loop trail and left climbs steeply through a hardwood forest to the summit of the 1120 foot Mason Hill.
 The view from the summit is partially obstructed by trees, but with the leaves off, there are some nice views out to the Greylock Range.
 A tree at the summit shows a sign of porcupine markings.
 The summit area on an overcast day.
Unfortunately moments after taking that last photo at the summit, the battery in my camera died.  I hiked back down and then went over to the Hopkins Memorial Forest off Northwest Hill Rd in Williamstown to do a short hike on the Ford Glen Brook Trail but couldn't take any pictures to share.  Williamstown is a wonderful town with many, many hiking options and I'm looking forward to exploring them all.

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