Mt. Greylock Wilbur's Clearing Trail is a 5.6 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Adams, Massachusetts that features a waterfall and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.
Great views! Wilbur's Clearing to Mount Greylock. We went from parking area up to AT via Old Summit Road. A little confusing with the skiing signs, but head east up to AT. Hike along AT to a point where Thunderbolt ties in, and make a push up to the summit of Greylock. Take the thunderbolt trail north until you reach the Appalachian trail (marked while), where you will turn left until you reach the Mt. Greylock summit. The Thunderbolt Trail was originally a CCC built ski trail, and in 1936 hosted the United States Eastern Alpine Ski Championships. Its current course has been somewhat altered from the original, but is no less challenging. The Thunderbolt Foot Trail climbs gently west winding through the forest south of Hoxie Brook, and eventually the foot trail will intersect the old ski trail on your right. At about the half mile mark, the trail becomes considerably steeper and heads northwesterly towards the summit ridge. This stretch is quite broad and is recognizable as a steep, tree-lined ski run. At about the 1.5 mile mark the trail reaches the summit ridge, where you have a beautiful view upon the town of Adams from Hadley Lookout. Check the park webpage. Maps there: http://www.mass.gov/dcr/parks/western/mgry.htm
Great Hike But Be Forewarned. The Thunderbolt Trail Splits Off To The Right At One Point But The Sign Looks Like It Goes To Left Up The Steep Incline. That Is A Direct Shot Up To the AT And Cuts Off About 3/4 Of A Mile But Not For The Inexperienced Hiker. It Was Very Steep And Strenuous, We Came Down The Other Way On The Thunderbolt And It Was Much Easier As You Had 3/4 Of A Mile Extra To Spead The Elevation. All In All A Great Hike Thiough With A Beautiful Summit.
Mountain was larger than I had expected from photos. Eastern approaches are very steep dirt paths. ~2300' of gain in 1-1.5hrs. Signage could be better coordinated, and was sometimes confusing. Trail was multi-use partway and part repurposed ski trail. After all of the hard work people will whiz by in their cars near the top! It is not at the quality level of the other northeast highpoints, but a fun hike, and great views nonetheless. B- overall
Incredible views at the top-worth the hike !
Great hike. Took thunderbolt trail in late February. Icy near the summit. Took AT south from summit which was really icy until I got to Gould trail. Recommend hiking pole and good boots. Also plenty of water.
For a beginner, it was pretty difficult. But, the view from the top is worth every difficult point.
Loved this hike. We took the Thunderbolt trail starting at Gould Rd. This trail was quite strenuous. The toughest I've done so far, for sure! But with great challenge comes GREAT reward. This trail was not as long as the Cheshire Harbor trail, and you really gain a lot of elevation very quickly. Bring more water than you think you want. You'll want to park on Gould Rd-- follow it to its end, and there will be a parking lot on your right. There is the trailhead for the Bellows Pipe which then becomes the Thunderbolt (so I understand). Just follow that! The first leg is a moderate incline, and well-maintained. Not too bad. You'll come to a fork, where you're given two options: follow the Bellows Pipe or make a left towards the summit on the Thunderbolt. We chose the Thunderbolt, and that's where it got REALLY hard. Lots of roots and rocks, some scramble, but the incline was extreme. Also, wear bug spray because a large portion was overgrown with tall grasses (though the trail remained visible). A mile and a half later, we were on the AT and didn't even notice... but the last 0.4 were not so hard. We made it to the top in just over two hours, with frequent breaks, and we're pretty experienced hikers. The summit is incredible. Most expansive views of the area I've seen, and total 360. Spend all day up there! We did! Nice cafe, restrooms, water, picnic benches, and the Thunderbolt ski shelter is pretty cool, too. Just be sure you leave ample time to descend-- much harder on the way down for your knees. Bring a walking stick. Hiking boots STRONGLY recommended. Will return for foliage in fall!!!!
Awesome mountain! Great trails, absolutely fantastic views, great facilities, great food at the summit.... Great great great! Highly recommend it!
This was my first experience on Appalachian Trail. Not as hard as I thought it could be - I'm a novice. The scenery is amazing. I want to make it an annual experience.
Enjoyed this hike was some tough parts very steep hills. Had my dogs with me they enjoyed it and there is a river most of the way up you can get access to for the dogs. There is a very beautiful waterfall near the big wooden brigde to the right you can look from the top of it if you follow the stream or you can walk down threw the woods ans get to the bottom! Very pretty though worth the hike!!!
Difficult. I don't hike every weekend but I am very athletic and I struggled going up. Coming down was hard in the snow.
We started at Wilbur Clearing parking area, up Old Summit Rd, stay east up to AT then head south to a convergance with Thunderbolt trail. Coninue up with a push to the summit. 3.1 miles, 2.5 hrs. Rocky and rooty terrain. 1181' elevation climb. We had 2 cars left lunch in the one at the top, nice reward!
Favorite since a kid!
Went this way to the summit last year. At the time had only been hiking for about a month so I found the initial climb to Mt. Williams to be quite challenging. My GPS app tracked the clearing to Williams at 0.60m and it was a tough .6m! After Williams summit, which had some nice views, the AT to the big bend wasn't bad at all. Moderate. I just redid that part of the AT 2 weeks ago. The climb is gradual, rocky but manageable. After the scenic vista at the big bend you enter a grassy field area where the trail terrain isn't bad at all but the incline can give you a good workout. Cross the road and a final rocky, little challenging ascent brings you to the thunderbolt ski shelter at the summit.
Hiked AT up Greylock. I really enjoyed this general area. For someone from north central MA the western part of the state is a perfect weekend getaway. As mentioned in other reviews you will find plenty of tourists at the top and a small dining area. I did not find the concession stand "ridiculous" ( see previous review ). Hello! Even hikers need a hamburger now and then.
Caution! This trail is NOT moderate -- it is very difficult. this route is done for the first 45 minutes from Gould rd but then the thunderbolt trail is an hour and a half of stair like climbing. The steep part alone is about 45 minutes going down; total descent about 1.25 hours. Allow yourself at least a half hour rest at summit. Total time with rest, there and back, 4.5 hour, for moderately fit adults. Need walking stick for descent. Water note: bring at least a quart per person on a 75 degree day --refill available only at summit.
truly enjoyed this area!!