Thursday, August 18, 2011

A Day In Western Massachusetts

96 at Glendale Falls, Middlefield, MA
I spend so much time on here bellyaching about my kids. Stupid teenagers. How they have to complain about everything. Thank goodness they're there to correct me all the time because, well, I'm stupid.

Not all the time, I guess.

98 and Zoet at the Falls
I gotta tell you, my kids were great today. Today we did a little day trip to the western part of the state, to see some waterfalls and hike a bit. Did you know there are fossilized dinosaur footprints in Massachusetts? Neither did I!

Don't get me wrong -- they didn't want to go, and made sure I knew it. The lure of an early allowance (even with the caveat that early allowance meant no complaining today) bought me a day of peace and quiet (Unlike their mother, I guess these kids can be bought. For cheap.) So we drive the two-plus hours to the first stop, to the utterly foreign sound of ...

What is that sound, anyway? No. It can't be. But it is. Is it? I think it's siblings. Siblings getting along.  With each other. Dare I detect even some enthusiasm?

We had a lovely picnic lunch at Glendale Falls, and took a bit longer rock climbing than I expected, so we decided to forgo Chesterfield Gorge so that we wouldn't miss the footprints.  But there it was, right off the road we were on, so we stopped at the gorge, which might actually be the prettiest spot in Massachusetts, and then headed to our final destination: the footprints in Holyoke.

Chesterfield Gorge, Chesterfield, MA
And to think we almost skipped this place! This was my favorite stop of the day.

The Falls

Dinosaur footrprints. You can see the three toes in the upper left.

A closer look

All those fossil footprints are provided courtesy of all these layers
Did I mention the best part? All of these sites are maintained by The Trustees of Reservations, and all were free. Free to park, free to enter; donations appreciated.


  1. Great story Linda and beautiful photos.
    I haven't spent much time in Western Mass but I have never heard of these places. That gorge is, well, gorgeous!

  2. after seeing these pictures I want to come to Massachusetts

  3. Thanks, Carolyn! I'm the same way -- I had never heard of them until I went online looking for the footprints. Well worth the tank of gas. And I already have leads on a couple of other places out there for next time. I want to do one more daytrip before school.