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VIEWS OF AND FROM THE TACONIC CREST TRAIL, MARCH 22 AND 29, 2008

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LOOKING SOUTHEAST FROM NEW YORK OVER VERMONT TERRITORY ALONG THE RIDGELINE TOWARD THE PETERSBURGH PASS, WITH OLD SKI TRAILS VISIBLE ABOVE THE PASS. ROUTE 2 CAN BE SEEN RUNNING ALONG THE MOUNTAIN. TO THE LEFT IN THE BACKGROUND ARE MOUNTAINS IN MASSACHUSETTS. (MARCH 29, 2008. ALL PHOTOS BY MARK E. RONDEAU)
 
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Picking up the Taconic Crest Trail just north of Route 2 at the Petersburg Pass, one enters Hopkins Forest, which is owned by Williams College.
 
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About 3/4  of a mile in, before you reach the Birch Brook Trail down to the valley, and the Hopkins Forest environmental center, the forest thins out to younger, thinner trees. Unmarked, on a rise a few yards to the east is Jim Smith Hill, a clearing from which you can see Greylock.

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Taken with the zoom at the north end of the Mount Greylock State Reservation are Mount Williams in the back and Mount Prospect in front of it. Unseen, Notch Road runs through the high valley between these two peaks. The white dot on the top of Mount Prospect, very near the top of the slope, is the clearing where the Appalachian Trail turns east toward Mount Williams, and where the Mount Prospect Trail runs south across the top of Prospect.

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Looking back toward the pass from the first clearing. The trail heading south from the pass takes the steep route back up to the crest that runs from the white spot by the road up over the top of the bush in the foreground and then turns south toward Berlin Mountain.

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The late afternoon sun casts shadows on the snow.

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Taconic Crest Trail Two

Photos

The Greylock Reservation Project

IV. On the Reservation

Mark Rondeau - Writer, Editor, Photographer


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The route north along the trail on March 22. The diamond marker blazes the trail all along its length. The circular marker belongs to the New York Department of Conservation. Most of the Taconic Crest Trail in Nothern Berkshire is in New York, though some parts are in Massachusetts and a small section is in Vermont.
 
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Here is Greylock, taken without the zoom.

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Pushing on north, about an hour and a half from Jim Smith Hill, one comes to a series of three clearings with dramatic views to the west and south. This is before the third clearing. Notice the beautiful fresh snow in the afternoon sun.

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Looking west from the third clearing, down at where Route 2 comes down off the Taconic range and enters the town.

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