Chesterfield Gorge
Find Your Place
Chesterfield Gorge Chesterfield, MA
166 acres

About Chesterfield Gorge

Experience this imposing gorge carved by a National Wild and Scenic River, then choose from great fishing, hiking, and biking options just downstream.

What makes Chesterfield Gorge a special place?
We think it’s the way this remarkable natural formation allows visitors to experience both the region’s geologic past and its recreational potential. The ancient rock emerged from the seabed a half-billion years ago, then was carved for thousands of years by glacial action and roaring meltwater. Today, this stretch of the Westfield River attracts walkers and cyclists, photographers and anglers.

This dramatic rock canyon features 70-foot-high walls carved by centuries of rushing water from the East Branch of the Westfield River. On your hike of the half-mile trail along the cliff tops, you'll take in breathtaking views of the gorge, the river, and the surrounding forest, which nurtures hemlock, ash, and oak, and is home to bears, bobcats, and turkeys.

Chesterfield Gorge is the entrance to an extensive natural recreation area along the Westfield, a federally designated Wild and Scenic River for its strong ecological and recreational values.

Trails
A half-mile trail runs along the top of the Gorge. Easy walking. The trail from the parking lot connects to the East Branch Trail (also known as River Road), popular with day hikers and mountain bikers, which follows the river another seven miles, beyond Bliss State Forest. This longer trip leads to the broad basin above Knightsville Dam, a massive Army Corps of Engineers flood control project.

When to Visit
April 1 to December 1, daily, 8AM to sunset. Allow a minimum of ½ hour.

Facilities
Seasonal public restrooms. Picnic tables.

Regulations & Advisories

  • In the interest of safety, swimming is prohibited.

  • In the interest of safety, rock climbing is prohibited.

  • Mountain biking is permitted only on River Road.

  • Dogs must be kept on leash at all times.

  • Catch-and-release fishing with artificial lures only.

  • Seasonal hunting is permitted subject to all local and state laws. Learn more about hunting on Trustees properties.

Directions

River Road
Chesterfield, MA 01012 
Telephone: 413.532.1631
Email: pvregion@ttor.org

Latitude: 42.393
Longitude: -72.880

Get directions on Google Maps.

From Pittsfield: Follow Rt. 9 East/Rt. 8
South 5 mi. Turn left onto Rt. 143 East. After
12.3 mi., turn left onto Rt. 143 East/Rt. 112
North. After approx. 4 mi., turn right onto
Ireland St. south for 0.8 mi. Turn left onto
River Rd. to parking (20 cars) on left.

From Northampton: Follow Rt. 9 West
approx. 4.4 mi. Turn left onto Chesterfield
Rd./Rt. 143 West. At intersection of Rt. 143
and Ireland St. in Chesterfield, take Ireland
St. south for 0.8 mi. Follow above directions.

Admission

When to Visit
April 1 to December 1, daily, 8AM to sunset. Allow a minimum of ½ hour.

Admission
Trustees Members and children: FREE. Nonmembers: Adult $2, Child (under 12) FREE. Fees collected by ranger; when ranger is not on duty, honor system applies.

Property History

Stone abutments of a c.1762 bridge that spanned the river are all that remain of an important link in the former post road between Boston and Albany, NY. Stagecoaches used the bridge, and a toll gate was established at its eastern end. During the Revolutionary War, redcoats marched over this bridge toward Boston following their defeat at Saratoga, NY. In 1835, floodwaters swept away the bridge along with nearby gristmills and sawmills.

Property Acquisition History
Original acreage acquired in 1929. Additional land purchased in 1949 with funds given by Sidney L. Beals and Mrs. Stanley King. Additional land given by the Pioneer Valley Association in 1950; Quinnehtuk Co. in 1955; and Stanley and Mildred Greimann in 1994.

Maps and Resources

Printed trail maps are distributed free from the ranger station (seasonally) and bulletin board in parking area. Please understand that supplies periodically run out. We recommend that you download a trail map before you visit.



Private Functions

Chesterfield Gorge is a memorable location for your wedding. We can accommodate ceremonies only (no receptions) for groups of up to 75 people. Please call 413.532.1631 x13 or e-mail pvregion@ttor.org for more information.

Planning Your Visit

Travel Links
Hidden Hills of Western MA
Hilltowns of Western MA

Before You Go
We encourage you to visit as many Trustees properties as you can.

Wherever your travels take you, please observe all posted regulations, follow special instructions from property staff, and keep in mind the Stewardship Code:

  • Protect wildlife and plants.
  • Guard against all risk of fire.
  • Help keep air and water clean.
  • Carry out what you carry in.
  • Use marked footpaths and bridle paths.
  • Leave livestock, crops, and machinery alone.
  • Respect the privacy of neighboring land.
  • Enjoy and share the landscape with others.

Click on links below for further visitor information:

Before Setting Out

Enjoying Trustees Reservations

Safety

About Hunting on Trustees of Reservations Land

Tell Us What You Think

We’d love to hear about your visit! Here are three easy ways to let us know what you think:

  1. Take our visitor survey. If you have a question for us, you can ask us in the survey and we’ll get back to you.

  2. Post a comment about your visit on our Facebook page.

  3. Share your experiences with other visitors on our website. Simply fill out the form below, and we’ll post your comment right here on this page.


Submitted by Jack and Ziggy on: June 23, 2010
Wow... great place. My puppy, Ziggy and I did some fly fishing below the gorge yesterday afternoon and it was just magnificent!



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Announcements & Alerts

Notice: Trails may be especially icy or muddy during the winter to spring transition. Use caution.

No advisories at this time.

Upcoming Things To Do
No events for this reservation at this time.
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