At this moment I am hanging in my hammock, inside a shelter partway up Mt. Greylock, the highest peak in Massachusetts. We are in the midst of what is forecast to be a four-day long rainstorm. I suspect that all the other hikers have found motels and hostels to wait out the worst of it, so we have the shelter to ourselves. We spent last night in a motel in Dalton, MA, but as a popular trail aphorism goes, “no pain, no rain, no Maine.” And as if to buoy our sodden spirits, as we hiked down into Cheshire, MA this afternoon we met a gentleman hiker by the name “Battle Axe,” (his radio handle from the Vietnam War) who treated us to lunch at the local pub before we parted ways – he to a B&B and we to begin the ascent of Greylock. The generosity of strangers on the trail still surprises us and is a habit we hope to take with us when our journey is complete.

We were able to enjoy a few gorgeous days after leaving Salisbury, which produced a number of great photos:

The view from our second “Bear Mountain,” this one the highest peak in Connecticut.

We descended through an area called “Sages,” a beautiful place of hemlocks and cascading brooks.

It was there that we crossed into Massachusetts, although our guidebook claims this sign is “misplaced.”

We walked along a half mile of ledges and cliffs atop Race Mountain.

Anne is posing in front of Mt. Everett. If you zoom in on the horizon over her shoulder you may be able to see saddle-shaped Mt. Greylock. A few minutes after this photo was taken we heard an incredible chorus of coyotes, which was fascinating but also chilling. Willett was hilariously perplexed by their carnival of crying barks.

We followed a gloriously mossy old stone wall in a verdant section of Massachusetts forest. It is always interesting to see these sorts of historical relics. We try to imagine when this land was someone’s farm and needed a wall.

Anne noticed this adorable frog inside the hollow rung of a ladder that was part of a footbridge. Can someone identify it for us?

Some more history; we passed the site of the final battle of Shays’ Rebellion near Sheffield, MA.

A cool and shady stone face.

On the Summer Soltice we celebrated the longest day of the year by hiking twenty five miles, breaking briefly to take a cooling dip in Upper Goose Pond. Willett was particularly delighted.


After five months of Snickers Bars and couscous, eating all the meat and vegetables I can get my hands on...
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4 Responses to Greylocked

  1. Siddharth says:

    The frog’s name is Martin. That is all.

    • loraleek says:

      I have been following this blog and enjoyed many laughs, mostly courtesy of Anne, I believe. However this one just made me have to say thank you. Although I must say he looks more like a Grayson to me. 🙂

      Also – I do appreciate the info herein, as I’m planning a thru-hike next spring and look forward to benefiting from Anne and Travis’ experience.

  2. Tracy Peter says:

    It looks like a Gray Tree Frog (Hyla versicolor). They make a nice calling sound on a warm summer night.


  3. john keefe says:

    It was my pleasure. I wish you all the best. I’ll be following your hike to ME


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