For lovers of the great outdoors, the Berkshires are a prime destination. Located about two and a half hours southwest of Boston, this highland region boasts some of the best that Mother Nature has to offer – majestic mountains, rolling hills, gorgeous rivers and sprawling forests that cover the landscape. It’s a popular vacation spot, especially in autumn with its kaleidoscope of color-changing leaves.
Ready to pack your comfortable ladies bike and head to Massachusetts? Cyclists have plenty to see and do on their treks to the Berkshires, including several biking trails through historic and scenic locals. This short guide details some of these options plus some helpful tips for your next trip.
Why To Visit the Berkshires
The Berkshires lie in Berkshire County, Massachusetts. Bordered by Connecticut, New York and Vermont, this region has been home to luminaries such as Norman Rockwell, Herman Melville, Yo-Yo Ma and Meryl Streep. The Berkshires captivate both locals and visitors with its rich blend of culture, cuisine, history and natural beauty.
Outdoor pursuits like cycling are just one of the many reasons to schedule a trip, but biking on its trails can offer an unforgettable experience. One popular option is the Ashuwillticook Rail Trail, an old railroad converted into a paved trail that runs almost 13 miles through Cheshire, Lanesborough and Adams. Open from dawn until dusk, Ashuwillticook also offers picnic areas plus fishing, bird watching and even cross-country skiing when there’s enough snow on the ground.
The Berkshires have plenty of mountains, but you don’t need a mountain bike to enjoy the area’s road trails. You’ll find other scenic routes in Sheffield, Great Barrington, Stockbridge, Lee and Lenox. These trails take you through the best parts of each town with local attractions and more. Most of the trails feature hills, so keep that in mind when packing for your trip.
Tips for Riding through the Berkshires
If you don’t already have a bike that can easily handle hills, you’ll probably want to get one. So what is the best electric bike for hills? That answer depends on a few factors: motor, battery power, the number of speeds and your weight. You’ll see many versions with rear-hub motors, which excel at smalling hills and recreational. Sixthreezero’s EVRYJourney 500W is one excellent example, designed for both paved surfaces and light trails and perfect for moderate to aggressive paced riding. And with its 500-watt motor, you can pedal on your own, use pedal assist or rely on full electric power.
Helpful Hints for Big and Tall Riders
No matter what your height or weight, there’s an ebike model for you. There’s a wide range of ebikes for heavy riders on the market, making cycling through the Berkshires or anywhere else fun and accessible. Again, motor capacity and battery power and key in your selection. You’ll want to look at motors with a minimum of 500 watts to get enough torque to take you over flat ground and some hilly terrain. You should also pay attention to rider fit specs. Sixthreezero offers many models accommodating riders up to 300 pounds, including the EVRYJourney series.