Bicycle Camping in the Berkshires of Connecticut, Massachusetts and New York
This 7 day bike camping tour in the forests of western New England starts in Connecticut and continues through Massachusetts, Vermont and New York state. Average ride length per day is 50 miles, with most days offering additional mileage options for advanced cyclists seeking extra climbs. (We added an extra day at the beginning of our ride, starting from Kettleton State Park to the bicycle loop starting point, Housatonic Meadows State Park).
Day 1: Kettleton State Park CT to Housatonic Meadows State Park CT. (Extra ride to Housatonic Meadows). This 40 mile ride begins at Kettleton State Park on Lake Zoar, which is part of the Housatonic River. The route takes a combination of scenic highways and local roads through the Litchfield Hills, with a total climb of 2200 ft . Destination for the night is Housatonic Meadows State Park West Cornwall, Connecticut, along the Housatonic River. Cue sheet and map
Day 2: Housatonic Meadows to Pittsfield State forest in Massachusetts. (This is the start and end of a week-long cycling loop)We continue cycling north along the gentle Housatonic plain, reaching Great Barrington in southwestern Massachusetts. . From here we climb along the edge of the Taconic Mountains through Alford, West Stockbridge, and Richmond. You'll arrive at Pittsfield State Forest outside of Pittsfield MA, the largest city in Berkshire County. Today's ride is 59 miles. Cue sheet and map
Optional Climb up Mount Greylock Day three presents an excellent opportunity for a climb up 3495 ft high Mount Greylock, the highest peak in Massachusetts. The 11 mile road from Lanesborough MA averages about 6% grade, starting with a steep climb near the visitors center. Bascom Lodge at the summit offers refreshments as well as gorgeous views into Vermont. A steep descent down Notch Rd. takes you to North Adams. Follow Rt. 8 or Lime St. to Adams, and then 12 miles on the beautiful Ashuwillticook Rail Trail. Local Roads take you back to Pittsfield State Forest for an approximately 45 mile ride. Cue sheet and map
3: Pittsfield MA to Arlington, Vermont:
north from Pittsfield along scenic Rt. 7 to Williamstown,
then continue along the Green Mountains of Vermont
to Bennington VT. Here you'll see the
Bennington Monument to the Revolutionary War and
ride through one of the town's three covered bridges.
Continue north to Arlington, and camp for the night
on the Battenkill . Today's ride is 56 miles.
Cue sheet and map
Day 4: Arlington Vt. to Cherry Plain State Park, NY : Today we'll head west from Arlington VT along the Battenkill River and in to upstate New York. You'll see great views of the Taconic Mountain Ridge, with rolling hills as we turn south to Cherry Plain State Park. Today's ride is 54 miles. Cue Sheet and Map
6: Cherry Plain to Taconic State Park.
ride south today through New York State, camping
Taconic State Park. You'll want to ride
an extra mile for a hike to nearby
Bash Bish Falls. Today's ride is 43 miles, staying
on wide shouldered Rt. 22 the entire way.
Although this is a good cycling highway, we also
give an option for local roads, totaling 48 miles.
Cue sheet and map
Day 7: Taconic State Park to Housatonic Meadows. We return to Housatonic Meadows, heading south first along the Harlem Valley Rail Trail for four miles from Copake Falls, near Taconic State Park. We rejoin Rt. 22 to Millerton, where the trail starts up again all the way to Wassaic, NY. We take the trail as far as Armenia, then turn east into Connecticut , taking Rt. 343 to Sharon, then Rt. 4 back to Cornwall Bridge. Ride north two miles on Rt. 7 to through the Litchfield Hills back to our optional first day starting point, Housatonic Meadows State Park, for a total of 37 miles with some good elevation as you cross the Taconic Range for the last time. Cue sheet and map
Route map for Taconic Bike Camping Tour (showing some options)
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