Rising roughly 1,000 feet in elevation, Mt. Holyoke Range State Park straddles the seven-mile ridge that runs from Hadley to Belchertown. The ridge is a patchwork of state, town and private lands. Parcels acquired by the state since the 1970's bring the park to over 3,000 acres. The Notch Visitor Center, located on Route 116 in Amherst, is open daily. Displays and interpretive programs are available in season. The park's Friends group offers hikes and programs throughout the year. The Mt. Holyoke Range formed some 200 million years ago when lava flowed from the valley floor, cooled and was upended. More recently, glaciers left their signature, scouring the ridge's jagged edges smooth in some places, exposing bedrock, or depositing till, sand, clay or muck in others. Since early days, settlers used all but the sheerest inclines for woodlots and pastures. Now mostly wooded, the ridge's steep slopes and east-west orientation create a number of forest types, including birch-beech-hemlock on the north side and oak-hickory on the south. Thickets, streams, ponds, and wetlands add to the diversity. Over 30 miles of marked trails provide a variety of outdoor experiences including hiking, walking, viewing vistas, cross-country skiing, snowmobiling, horseback riding and hunting.

hiking
4 days ago

hiking
6 days ago

Beautiful as advertised. Great view of pond at end.
Stay on yellow trail. Look for Todd Andrew Bristol memorial along the way. Sad.

hiking
9 days ago

on Mount Norwottuck

hiking
9 days ago

hiking
9 days ago

hiking
14 days ago

Loved this trail, there aren't any signs, just trail markers, so without using this as my guide I may have been a little bit off track. Beautiful reservoir and great for dogs to come too also.

hiking
15 days ago

hiking
23 days ago

hiking
23 days ago

hiking
25 days ago

hiking
29 days ago

Beautiful view of the Pioneer Valley. Nice and quiet on our Monday AM trip.

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
1 month ago

The hike itself is nice but I think overrated given what else there is in the area. Good views at the top, we walked down to the horse 'caves' which were a cool rock formation. The 3 star rating is due to the horrible trail markings and map. There exist a significant number of trails that arent listed on the map, and the intersections arent clearly marked. For such a popular hike, they could put some effort in on a decent map and trail marking system. Only saving grace were the numbered location markers at some trail intersections, which are actually on the map.