Riding the Ashuwillticook Rail Trail in the Berkshires

Riding along the Ashuwillticook Rail Trail between Lanesborough and Adams, MA.
Riding along the Ashuwillticook Rail Trail between Lanesborough and Adams, MA.

Today was a nearly perfect Sunday. I discovered another bike trail, this one between Lanesborough and Adams, and enjoyed time with a good friend riding through wooded trails, beside lakes and streams, enjoying the breeze, the ducks, and interesting conversation. Everyone riding on the trail seemed happy, as if this were the perfect tonic after our week-long deluge of rain.

Like our more familiar bike trail between Amherst and Northampton, this trail’s creators deigned to give it a nearly unpronounceable Native American name. It’s the Ashuwillticook Rail Trail, and I was surprised when I found that it’s the only rail trail built so far out in the great West of the state. LIke our local trail, it is popular with riders of all ages, and it winds its way beside four great big lakes, with anglers set up along the banks, and lots of ducks bobbing with their babies and splashing in the sun.

I came prepared for the 11-mile long trail. I looked online to find a few possible restaurants where we could go after the ride. But like many plans made on the web and not with personal investigation, we settled for the Miss Adams Diner instead of the places in North Adams I had picked out. North Adams was not on the path of the lovely Ashuwillticook. The trail passed by a few places where streams converged and a man in a sombrero was painting the beautiful view on an easel he had set up.

The Miss Adams Diner only offered breakfast when we showed up at 12:40 pm, but that was ok, we enjoyed sitting in the cozy booth and then contemplated the 11 miles back to the parking lot in Lanesborough. On the lakes people in boats cast lines but all they were catching were six-inch long crappies. Maybe there are big perch and bass in there, but nobody seemed to be hooking any of them.

I capped off the day with a rousing game of poker with my dear friends…and actually won. Now that’s a perfect Sunday, all things considered