OverviewIn Massachusetts you can't find many technical climbs, and you won't find any in Blandford either. The mountain does offer some great scenery. It varies from simple class one hikes to class two hikes. There are two "cliffs" on the mountain if your interested. Anyone can climb at least two routes on the mountain.
Blandford is the oldest continously running, club-owned ski area in North America! A new fact for me.
Blandford is a wonderful ski mountain for beginning and intermediate skiers alike. In the winter there is skiing, tubing, and cardboard box racing. They feature some nice terrain parks but have an excellent big air jump. It only has three chair lifts to the "summit" and a tow rope for beginners.
The area also features two decently hard trails. The newest, "Bear", is a pretty steep trail that will scare off the beginner skiers. Also, right next to it is "Put's Peril" which has the dangerous "Stump Jump" as me and my friends call it. The Stump Jump is positioned a little below the top of the trail and has a steep slope to get down to it. If you hit it with enough speed you will clear the entire trail, although you are most likely to break your skis or yourself.
In the summer it is a great place to take the family on a day hike. It is a moderately easy hike with some good places to explore. There are a few skier-made side trails through the woods on the north side of the mountain that offer steep slopes and great scenery.
If your looking for a little bit of scrambling, head up to Put's Peril. You can take either Bear or Puts to get to the 'cliff'. Once you're up there, you should see the rocks above Puts. You won't need any ropes, however, because the rocks are only about twenty or twenty five feet high.
Another great trail to take is Broadway, a beginner slope, that brings you up to the first chair. Once your up there, you can look around at the other trails to find what suits you. There is a path connecting all the lifts so if you can't find what your looking for, keep going along the path until you do.
If your looking for adventure, after skiing there my whole life I made a few trials in the woods and throughout the area. Adventure along all the routes to find some if you'd like.
When to ClimbThe Winter
The winter is definitely not the best time to climb. Almost all the slopes are packed with skiers and if the ski patrol catches you were you're not supposed to be, your off the mountain.
The rocks above Puts is not an option for climbing during the winter because ski patrol will catch you if you take to long. However, I have seen a few daring skiers and boarders ski it before. If you time it carefully and get down fast, it' possible.
These are defiantly the best seasons to climb. The weather there is not cold at all during these seasons so climbing will be easy, but avoid early spring. People might be getting in their last ski runs before the end of the ski season, and ski patrol will be on the lookout.
In the summer months nobody is on or around the mountain so you can do whatever you'd like. If you explore around enough, you'll find some interesting places to climb and hike.
I have never hiked Blandford in the Fall but I would have to say watch out for the prep teams getting all the supplies in when late fall comes. The fall will probably have the best scenery and good climbing conditions to, although you might need a thick sweatshirt and some warm clothes elsewhere just in case.
SkiingIf you're near the area, go skiing! Blandford has great ski trails as well as off-limit features such as the stump jump, the cliffs, the woods, and more. If you're a beginner, they have a tow rope and a smal magic carpet.
You're out of luck. Blandford offers two steep trails, and that's it. If your in for adventure, you can always do the rocks above one of he steep trails, Put's Peril or the one on the 2nd Lift Line. On powder days they're definitely worth getting in trouble for.
If your in for terrain parks, I guess you're in luck, but its not that great. It offer a few rails as well as a big air jump and a distance jump.
This is the perfect plave for you to improve you're skiing. Challenge yourself by taking some of the harder trails like Ledge and Put's Peril. If you're in for a real challenge, do Bear. Bear has a fairly steep start (65 degrees), and offers a challenge for you to learn.
If you're not interested and you just wanna ski, do others like Broadway or trails like that.
You have some of the best beginner features. You have the magic carpet for little kids and the tow rope which brings you up about 200 - 300 feet. It's great to learn how to ski here and the trails are in your best interest.
If you want to challenge yourself take the first lift and do Broadway, which is a great beginners trail. Keep yourself out of the terrain park!
Here's a trail map >>>>>
What You NeedThe Spring/Summer
You will only need a few snacks and maybe a hiking stick if you'd like. The mountain isn't hard enough to need any technical equipment. It's not even hard enough for hiking boots if you stay on the trails. If your planning to break to the rules and camp out, all you need is your typical tent. There are no winds because trees surround you all around. Make sure you don't camp out in the open and watch out for wild life. While it can be beautiful, there is always the chance of bobcats, coyotes, and bears.
All you need is warm clothes and boots. Gloves will be a necessity in the winter. You won't need any ice tools or crampons unless you plan to climb the cliff over Puts, although you probably won't need either unless it gets really icy. (Again, watch out for ski patrol.)
Getting ThereFrom The South (Hartford)
Head south on Main St. toward Wells St.(About 100 yards). Turn right at Wells St. ad continue for about 200 yards. At Pulaski Circle, take the 4th exit onto Whitehead Hwy. and continue for 0.6 miles. Take the exit onto I-91 N toward Springfield/Bradley Int'l Airport and continue for 31.6 miles. Take exit 14 for I-90/Mass. Pike toward Boston/Albany NY and continue for 0.9 miles. Follow signs for Albany/I-90 W and merge onto I-90 W/Massachusetts Turnpike/Mass Pike and continue for about 5.1 miles. Take exit 3 toward RT-10/Westfield/US-202/Northampton and continue 0.4 miles. Merge onto Pride Way and continue for 0.1 miles. Turn right at RT-10/US-202 and continue for 1.5 miles. Turn right at Franklin St/US-20 and continue for about 8 miles. Turn left at Blandford Stage Rd and continue for 1.4 miles. Continue on Russell Stage Rd. for 0.7 miles. Take a slight right at Nye Brook Rd and continue until you reach Blandford Ski Area.
41 Second Division Rd, MA 01008 (Blandford Ski Area)
Directions - Google Maps
Red TapeThere are few rules you have to follow.
1. In the winter there is no hiking unless you are permitted by the staff.
2. If you are hiking in the winter, skiers have the right of way.
3. If you hike during the winter, avoid packed trails and stay to the sides.
4. Do not damage the property in any way while hiking.
5. No fooling with the chair lifts while there in the hiking months.
6. There is no camping permitted anytime.
CampingThere is no camping allowed since the area is owned privately. If you are caught camping you will be kicked off the mountain.
P.S.Directions - Google Maps
Main Image (If it showed up) - http://skiing.alpinezone.com/
Also, Blandford Ski Area