Looking to get out into the great outdoors during your Berkshires getaway? The Stockbridge Bowl, a popular destination for boating, swimming, fishing, and more is less than 15 minutes drive from Inn at Stockbridge.
A wide variety of outdoor recreation is readily available here in the Berkshires. Hiking, biking, skiing, lakes, mountains, and more. Of course, once the mercury starts creeping up the thermometer, people make a beeline for the water. While the Berkshires are home to quite a few bodies of water, one of the largest and most popular is the Stockbridge Bowl.
The Stockbridge Bowl, aka Lake Mahkeenac, is a 398-acre man-made reservoir with approximately six miles (9.6km) of shoreline and a maximum depth of 48 feet (14.6m). The reservoir was built in the late 1800’s and remains contained by a 340-foot long (100m) earthen dam. Kwuniikwat Island, a small, three-acre island, is located at the southwest end of the lake.
Though Stockbridge Bowl is man-made, at over 100 years old, the lush and lovely area looks completely natural. A wonderful area to explore, boat, hike, or just relax and take in the expansive views.
Over 400 homes and a few historic Berkshire “cottages” surround the lake. Many are on the water, including the Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health and Seranak, the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s summer lake house.
Visiting Stockbridge Bowl
Stockbridge Bowl is located north of Stockbridge, MA at 55 Interlaken Road, Lenox, MA.
Getting to the Bowl from our Berkshires bed and breakfast is a breeze. Head north on US-7 to pass through Lenox, MA to reach the lake. This route will take you past Edith Wharton’s The Mount, Ventfort Hall, Tanglewood, and other attractions. You can also choose to head south on US-7 from the inn. This route will take you through Stockbridge, MA, Naumkeag, Berkshire Botanical Garden, and The Norman Rockwell Museum, to name but a few. Either route will get you to the Bowl in 15 minutes or less.
Activities at the Bowl include swimming, boating, fishing, and, in winter, skating and ice-fishing.
Those looking to get out on the water will discover a the area is home to a number of outfitters with kayaks, canoes, SUP boards, and more for rent. The lake’s double concrete boat ramp is located near the northwest shore parking lot.
Looking to get some fishing in? Great idea! The lake is home to largemouth bass, rock bass, yellow perch, rainbow trout, brown trout, and lake salmon. Again, local outfittes can provide you with all the fishing gear you need. Do be sure to acquire a Massachusetts fishing license and familiarize yourself with the rules and regulations before you throw your line in the water.
Swimming and sunbathing is best enjoyed on the southeast shore’s sandy beach complete with lifeguards, changing rooms, and restrooms. You’ll also find picnic tables and playground equipment nearby.
Bullard Woods, Gould Meadows, and Kwuniikwat Island
Wildlife and hiking enthusiasts will enjoy exploring the trails of Bullard Woods. Bullard Woods is a 52 acre stretch of woodlands located along the northeast shore of the Bowl. The woods, originally part of the Highwood manor house estate, are owned by Tanglewood and open to the public.
Bullard Woods offers a series of short hiking trails, including one that leads to some picnic tables near on the shore of the Bowl. Another trail leads to and through nearby Gould Meadows, a 95 acre conservation property with a public trail and water frontage on Stockbridge Bowl.
Kwuniikwat Island is the three-acre island located at the south end of Stockbridge Bowl. The island has a public dock, picnic tables, and lots of wildlife. Birders, in particular, come to see the blue herons, green herons, osprey, loons, cormorants, ducks, geese, and bald eagles.
Learn more about the Stockbridge Bowl online at thesba.org Let us know if we can be of any assistance with gear, directions, or suggestions for your day’s itinerary.
Inn at Stockbridge is here to help you make the most of your Berkshires adventures!