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Massachusetts State Parks

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USA Parks
Berkshires Region
October Mountain State Forest
October Mountain State Forest © Rolf Hansen
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256 Woodland Road
Lee, Massachusetts   01238

Phone: 413-243-1778
Reservations: 413-243-1778
At 16,127 acres, October Mountain is the largest state forest in Massachusetts, offering visitors a place to camp, hike and enjoy the outdoors while they visit nearby Tanglewood and other points of interest. 46 campsites dot a sunny hillside. Several sites are wheelchair accessible. The forest's trails delight hikers and equestrians. Trails are available for every level of experience, and include the famous Appalachian Trail. One of the most scenic trails lead to Schermerhorn Gorge, a striking natural feature which has intrigued generations of geologists. Countless varieties of wild plants and animals can be found in the varied terrain of this vast forest.
History of the Area
October Mountain State Forest is located in the Berkshire Hills of western Massachusetts, spanning across the towns of Washington, Lee, Lenox, and Becket. It is the largest state forest in Massachusetts, covering an area of approximately 16,500 acres.

The history of October Mountain State Forest dates back several centuries. Native American tribes, including the Mahican and Mohawk, inhabited the region for thousands of years before the arrival of European settlers.

In the 18th century, the forest played a crucial role in the logging industry. Settlers used the abundant timber resources for building houses, barns, and fueling the early development of nearby communities. The dense forests also provided hunting grounds for both indigenous people and European settlers.

During the early 20th century, the state of Massachusetts recognized the ecological importance and recreational potential of the area. In 1915, October Mountain became the first state forest in Massachusetts, named after the dense foliage that provided vibrant colors during the fall season.

The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), a public work relief program established during the Great Depression, carried out substantial development in October Mountain State Forest. From 1933 to 1942, the CCC employed young men to construct roads, fire towers, campsites, and trails. Many of these CCC structures still exist and are utilized by visitors today.

October Mountain State Forest has been actively managed for multiple uses since its establishment. Various recreational activities, including camping, hiking, fishing, hunting, and kayaking, are allowed within the forest boundaries. The forest also serves as an essential habitat for diverse wildlife, including black bear, deer, turkey, beavers, and numerous bird species.

October Mountain State Forest has evolved from its initial use as a source of timber to a cherished recreational area renowned for its natural beauty and ecological significance.
 Hiking Trailyes
 Swimming Beachyes
 Bike Trailsyes
 Bridle Trailsyes
BoatingLaunch Rampsyes
1. October Mountain State Forest Campground: This is the primary campground within the forest itself, offering 46 campsites for tents and RVs with picnic tables and fireplaces at each site.

2. Hidden Valley Campgrounds: Located near to October Mountain State Forest, this campsite offers amenities like a swimming pool, playgrounds for kids as well as hiking trails into the state forest.

3. Fernwood Forrest Family Camping Area: Also located nearby in Hinsdale MA., it provides tent sites along with cabin rentals that are equipped with electricity & water hookups.

4. Bonnie Brae Cabins And Campsites: A family:friendly camping area situated on Pontoosuc Lake which also has easy access to various recreational activities available in or around October mountain state park such as fishing, boating etc.

5. Prospect Lake Park: It's another great option if you're looking forward to enjoy lake side camping experience while being close enough from all major attractions of Berkshire county including our very own "October mountain".

6. Backcountry Camping: For those who prefer more primitive style of outdoor stay can opt out for back country camping inside october mountains but remember these kind of spots don't come up any modern facilities so be prepared accordingly before heading towards them.
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1. Appalachian Trail: This is a long-distance hiking trail that passes through the October Mountain State Forest, offering stunning views of Berkshire County.

2. Felton Pond Loop: A 3-mile loop around Felton Pond with moderate difficulty level and beautiful water views.

3. Schermerhorn Gorge Trail: An approximately 5 miles round trip hike featuring a waterfall and unique rock formations in an old-growth forest setting.

4. Washington Mountain Marsh Interpretive Trail: Easy to navigate, this short interpretive trail offers educational signs about local wildlife and plant species found within the marsh ecosystem.

5. Boulder Rock Hiking Pathway: It's roughly two miles long but steep at times; it leads hikers up to some impressive boulder fields for panoramic vistas over surrounding landscapes.

6. October Mountain Loop: At nearly six miles in length, this moderately difficult trek takes you deep into hardwood forests where deer sightings are common during dawn or dusk hours.

7. Buckley Dunton Lake Trails: These trails offer serene lakefront walks as well as opportunities for fishing along its shores.

8. Ashuwillticook Rail Trail: This flat paved path provides easy walking conditions perfect for families or those looking for less strenuous activity.

9. Gobbler's Knob Lookout Point: Accessible via several different paths throughout the park; from here one can enjoy sweeping scenic overlooks across much of western Massachusetts.

10. Deer Hill/Vista Trails: These interconnected pathways provide options ranging from shorter strolls under towering pines trees towards more challenging uphill climbs leading toward breathtaking viewpoints overlooking valleys below.

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Area Campgrounds
Camp Overflow
PO Box 645
Otis, MA
Mountain View Campground Inc
1856 South Main Street
Otis, MA
Bonnie Brae Cabins & Campsites
108 Broadway Street
Pittsfield, MA
Walker Island Camping
27 Route 20
Chester, MA
Laurel Ridge Camping Area
40 Old Blandford Road
East Otis, MA
Fernwood Forest Campground, Inc.
350 Longview Avenue
Hinsdale, MA
Hidden Valley Campground
15 Scott Road
Lanesboro, MA
Summit Hill Campground
34 Old Middlefield Road
Washington, MA
Berkshire Park Camping Area
350 Harvey Road
Worthington, MA
Area Fishing Related Businesses
Smitty's Bait & Tackle
200 North St
Dalton, MA
(413) 684-2244

October Mountain State Forest is located in western Massachusetts.From the east or west: Follow the Mass Pike (Rte. I-90) to exit 2 in Lee. Turn right onto Rte. 20 west to Center St. in Lee, follow the state forest signs to the park.

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Massachusetts State Parks