It is officially summer, so harness my inner New Yorker and do what the locals do – get out of the city to explore the country side. New York City is located just a few hours from a country-side filled with mountains, rivers, lakes, streams and abundant wildlife. On this particular outing, I booked a place to stay in the Berkshires (Western Massachusetts) and set out for a weekend of hiking and exploring quaint towns. On one particular Saturday, I took a detour to Taconic State Park (straddling the New York and Massachusetts boarder). This state park is home to Bash Bish Falls – the most dramatic and highest single drop waterfall in Massachusetts and Copake Iron Works Museum – a former iron works facility that that thrived from 1845 until 1903.
The charcoal blast furnace, blowing engine house, machine shop, office and powder storage building still remain for visitors to explore. Visiting Taconic State Park is like taking a trip back in time. As I hiked the short trail to the magnificent Bash Bills Falls (which given the time of year of my visit showcased the falls fully flowing) I was transported back to a time where this part of the country served a large manufacturing role. I imagined what it must have been like to live a time when the country-side was a robust community of workers and factory owners – instead of a vacation destination. I sat on a rock overlooking the falls and reflected how fortunate I was to be able to have this experience. After leaving the falls, I continued on a hiking trail that took me along Bish Bash Brook (which I actually think eventually rambles its way into the Hudson River). Upon exiting the park, I vowed to come back soon to explore more (as there are numerous hiking trails).