Download the Noble View trail
Pitcher Brook - Laurel Lane
1½ hours at a
On the Noble View entrance road, a short distance from the farmhouse, at
the west end of the large gravel parking lot, is a sign indicating the beginning
of the Pitcher Brook Trail.
Pitcher Brook Trail passes through pleasant woods with laurel and blueberries
in season, crosses Ann’s Trail, then the Border Trail and descends to the
gorge of Pitcher Brook with its swift water, deep pools and two waterfalls
called “Big Pitcher” and “Little Pitcher”. In spots the going is a little
rough, but not difficult except when icy in winter.
Leaving the brook, the trail climbs mildly to a junction
with Laurel Lane Trail which can be followed back to the farmhouse, passing
on the right Charcoal Kiln Trail, County Road Trail, Border Trail and Dam
Brook Trail, in that order.
Laurel Lane is wide and runs through mature forest. The footing in places
is sometimes muddy, Be alert for the “Dry Trail”, which is west of and parallel
to Laurel Lane between the Loop Trail and the entry road.
For those who are interested in the history
of days long gone, this hike offers an opportunity to view two old cellar
holes. On the left (northwest) of Laurel Lane, before reaching Charcoal Kiln
Trail, you will pass a site known as the Pendleton-Snow Place. An atlas of
Hampden County shows buildings standing at this site in 1912. There are two
wells to search for, one near the house site and one on the opposite side
of Laurel Lane where presumably the old barn stood.
Continuing north on Laurel Lane back toward the farmhouse, shortly after
passing County Road Trail on the right, and before reaching the Border Trail,
there is a large and very old foundation and well on the left (west) of Laurel
Lane. The names of the occupants of the house which stood here have not been
definitely determined, but the place is supposed to have been the homestead
of a family named Ashley.
Water Hole Circuit
½ hour at a moderate
From the farmhouse go down Laurel Lane Trail to the beginning of the Dam
Brook Trail on the left (east). The Dam Brook Trail leads to a pond from which
ice was formerly harvested. The dam is unsafe to cross--cross the brook below
the dam on the Dam Brook Trail, and then immediately turn left (north) on
the trail which leads upward moderately to connect with Link Trail. Turn left
(north) here and follow the Link Trail past the Woodland Trail and the Loop
Trail (on your right) until you reach Saunders Corner fireplace, and the
field that is south of the double cottage and east of the farmhouse.
1 hour at a moderate
The Spring Trail begins at a sign at the southeast corner of the field
in front (east) of the double cottage. As you walk downhill on the south
edge of the field to reach the Spring Trail, you’ll see trees growing around
and in an old cellar hole known as the Gowdy Place, which was purchased by
Albert Noble (for whom Noble View is named) in 1835.
From the southeast corner of the field, at a junction with the Circuit
Loop, the Spring Trail goes downhill to end at the Border Trail, passing
on the way a huge birch tree about six feet in circumference. To the left
(east), near the start of the trail, you can visit the covered spring
that used to supply water, using a pump, to the sinks at the cottages.
Turn right (south) on the Border Trail and follow its ups and downs along
the side of the hill to the junction with the Woodland Trail. Turn right
(west) on the Woodland Trail and climb moderately through interesting forest.
You will eventually come out on the Link Trail. Turn right (north) on the
Link Trail and pass the Ski Trail and Saunders Corner fireplace on your way
back to the buildings at Noble View.
Malcolm B. Ross Forest
Memorial Forest Circuit
An easy 50 minute walk
From the Gantt Memorial Fireplace (note the engraved inscription on the
granite block) north of the double cottage, follow the white-blazed trail
along the left (west) edge of the cleared area north down the hill a short
distance to the Border Trail. Turn left (west) here and stay on the Border
Trail until it reaches the Entrance Road near South Quarter Road.
Walk up the Noble View Entrance Road to the gate, pass through and turn
left on the Mac Ross Trail (sign). Stay on the Mac Ross Trail until you return
to the cottages. You will pass on the right (south) the Outpost Campground,
developed primarily for youngsters by a devoted Chapter member, Frank A. Mann,
now deceased. Just beyond the campground on the left (noth) of the Mac Ross
Trail a spring will be seen, and shortly before reaching the cottages you
will pass on the left (north) the unique Malcolm B. Ross Memorial with bronze
Malcolm B. Ross was an active member of Berkshire Chapter for nearly 25
years. He served as Chapter Chairman and twice as Noble View Chairman, and
also served as Chairman of the AMC Chapters Committee. The land that constitutes
the Malcolm B. Ross Memorial Forest was purchased and added to Noble View
in 1958. It measures roughly 600 ft. by 2700 ft. and contains over 30 acres.
Dam Brook Trail
About 2½ hours
at a moderate pace
This somewhat rugged trail follows Dam Brook downhill through mature forest
and past mossy glens until it reaches Little River, the outlet of Cobble Mountain
From the farmhouse, go down Laurel Lane Trail, passing Ann's Trail on the
right, until you come to a sign on the left (east) for the turn-off on the
Dam Brook Trail. In a short distance the Dam Brook Trail reaches what remains
of the pond that furnished ice when Noble View was worked as a farm. The dam
creating the pond now leaks badly and is unsafe to cross, but the spot is
interesting because of its association with the past.
Below the dam the trail makes the first of several crossings of Dam Brook
and connects with a short trail on the left (north) which leads to the Link
Trail and back to Noble View. The Dam Brook Trail continues south along the
brook, crossing Border Trail and later County Road Trail (where there was
a small pond created for fire protection purposes that may be concealed by
brush and undergrowth) to the Charcoal Kiln Trail.
Look for the old brick kiln which was used for making charcoal many years
ago. It is on the Charcoal Kiln Trail immediately at the right (west) of Dam
Dam Brook Trail crosses Charcoal Kiln Trail and wends its
downward way to boulder-strewn Little River. Having enjoyed the view of the
river and perhaps eaten lunch here, retrace your steps to Charcoal Kiln Trail.
Turn right (east) on Charcoal Kiln Trail and walk until you reach its junction
with County Road Trail. Turn right, continuing on County Road Trail until
its intersection with the River Glen Trail, where you'll turn left (northwest).
Turn left (west) on the River Trail and climb the steep hill. Pass the Circuit
Trail and turn right (north) on the Link Trail on your way back to the buildings
at Noble View.
Charcoal Kiln Trail to
Lookout and The Ledges
About 2½-4 hours
at a moderate pace
From the farmhouse, go down (south) on Laurel Lane Trail, pass Ann's Trail
on right (W) and Dam Brook Trail on left (east), cross Border Trail, pass
County Road Trail on left (east) and then turn left (east) on Charcoal Kiln
Some distance along the Charcoal Kiln Trail there is a sign on the right
marking a side trail to the Lookout. This is a rocky outcropping with a view
high above Little River Gorge. The large standpipe in the western view is
the surge tank for the hydro-electric plant operated by water released from
Cobble Mountain Reservoir.
After admiring the view, retrace your steps to Charcoal Kiln Trail and
turn right (east) and continue to the junction with Dry Ridge Trail on the
right (south). The Ledges are another rocky outcropping above Little River
Gorge, with good views including a view of "980", the steep hill on the other
side of the river. Your walk to this point probably took about 40 minutes,
and it will take about the same time to return to Noble View by the same
From the Ledges you may continue downhill on Charcoal Kiln Trail to the
old brick kiln used to make charcoal many years ago and return to Noble View
by the steep Dam Brook Trail; or you may stay on Charcoal Kiln Trail until
it reaches County Road Trail and then return to Noble View by the River
Trail. Any of these alternate routes will, of course, require additional
With the aid of the Noble
View trail map and the appropriate USGS topographic map, you can figure
out a number of interesting and challenging hikes from Noble View, in addition
to those described here.
For example, you might make the complete circuit of the Border Trail in
either direction. It's rough and strenuous in some sections, especially ascending
west from of Sodom Brook, along the north border of the Noble View property.
You will note that this section of the trail is not shown on the Noble View
Recommended hikes in the area include the Keystone Arches Bridges Trail, Sanderson Brook Falls,
In planning any hikes at Noble View, remember that the farther you get
from the Double Cottage, the more climbing you are likely to have to do to