Race Brook Falls
Sheffield, MA

RATING: 4.5/5.0

Race Brook Falls
(click for larger image)

STATE: Massachusetts
COUNTY: Berkshire County
TOWN: Sheffield
PARK: Mt. Everett State Reservation
TYPE: Horsetails and cascades
HEIGHT: Approximately 300-foot total drop
WATER SOURCE: Race Brook
TRAIL LENGTH: 0.7 mile to lowermost falls; 1.1 miles to uppermost falls
TRAIL DIFFICULTY: To the lowest falls, moderate; to the upper falls, moderate side of difficult
HIKING TIME: 20 minutes to lower falls; 60 minutes to visit all five falls
ALTITUDE GAIN: Up 450 feet, down 30 feet to lower falls; up 900 feet, down 50 feet to upper falls
WHEN TO VISIT: May to November
SWIMMING: Not Possible and/or Prohibited
DELORME ATLAS: Page 43, J-30 (marked)
HANDICAP ACCESS: No
INCLUDED IN BOOK: Yes (Included in 2nd Edition of book as a full chapter)
DOGS ALLOWED: Yes
COST TO VISIT: Free
ALTERNATE NAMES: None Noted



THE FALLS:

Race Brook Falls offers five distinct and very scenic sets of waterfalls. If that is not enough to entice you into visiting, you can continue past the falls up to the nearby summits of Mt. Everett or Mt. Race as an added bonus.
         The lowermost falls drops nearly 100 feet and is surrounded by dozens of hemlock trees, creating a nice frame. The second falls, a pretty horsetail, is more exposed to the sun, and presents improved photographic opportunities. This is our favorite of the five waterfalls here. This one fans graceful down a steep ledge before splashing in a shallow pool below. Braving the slippery process of wading across the brook, it is possible to wade right up and lean against the rugged, nearly vertical wall that the water tumbles down.
         Most waterfall types, including horsetails, plunges, cascades, slides, and fans, can be found by continuing up the steep trail past the second falls. The third and forth falls consist of plunges, horsetails and cascades. You will probably want to avoid the third falls in the early spring; constant mud is likely to be a common nuisance between the second and forth falls for hikers during this season. The fifth and final falls has very low water flow as it is found high on the mountainside. Viewing the upper fifth falls requires a short bushwhack, which almost ensures you privacy here.


TRAIL INFORMATION:

Please see trail information in our published guidebook, New England Waterfalls: A Guide to More Than 400 Cascades And Waterfalls, or you can email us (gparsons66@hotmail.com) and we will happily provide them to you. When requesting information via email, please remember to specify which particular waterfall(s) you are interested in.


DIRECTIONS:

Please see directions in our published guidebook, New England Waterfalls: A Guide to More Than 400 Cascades And Waterfalls, or you can email us (gparsons66@hotmail.com) and we will happily provide them to you. When requesting directions via email, please remember to specify which particular waterfall(s) you are looking for directions to.


SPECIAL NOTES / UPDATES SINCE THE 2ND EDITION:

The Race Brook Trail continues above the falls to a junction with the white-blazed Appalachian Trail, about 2.1 miles from the parking area. By linking the Race Brook Trail with the Appalachian Trail, you can complement the waterfalls of Race Brook with the peaks of Mt. Race or Mt. Everett, both of which offer equally compelling views of the surrounding countryside. If you are looking for a little privacy, Mt. Race is the mountain to head to, as there is an auto road to the top of Mt. Everett.




INTERESTED IN VISITING MORE NEW ENGLAND WATERFALLS?

Take a peek at our published 376-page guidebook, New England Waterfalls: A Guide to More Than 400 Cascades and Waterfalls! Click on either of the cover photos below to read reviews and/or purchase the guidebook directly on amazon.com.


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