Sandisfield State Forest Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation York Lake
Route 183 and East Hill Road, New Marlborough, MA

  • Dogs allowed
  • Family Friendly
  • Free
  • Parking
  • Picnicking
  • Restroom
  • Scenic View
  • Trailhead
Safety Tips
York Lake in New Marlborough, MA | Berkshires Outside
York Lake in New Marlborough, MA | Berkshires Outside
York Lake in New Marlborough, MA | Berkshires Outside
York Lake in New Marlborough, MA | Berkshires Outside
York Lake in New Marlborough, MA | Berkshires Outside
  • Public Land
  • Private Land
  • Bus Route
  • Trail
  • Major Trail

About York Lake

York Lake is a small, trout-stocked lake in the Sandisfield State Forest with a family-friendly beach. The beach is a serene place for families to enjoy a day by the water, as there is virtually no development around the lake, leaving visitors immersed in the natural beauty of the Berkshires. The swimming area is roped, although there is typically no lifeguard. Additionally, shaded picnic tables and grills are spread throughout the beach, making it easy to spend multiple hours at York Lake. From Memorial Day to Labor Day, bathrooms are available.

Those looking to explore more of the water can use the lake's boat ramp to launch manual or electric motor boats. Kayaking, canoeing, and standup paddleboarding are great ways to explore the lake, whose one-mile perimeter showcases the beauty of the northern hardwood forest surrounding the water. The lake is also a popular early-season trout fishing area since it is well-stocked and provides access to stunning natural beauty. Additionally, anglers successfully reel in largemouth bass, yellow perch, bluegill, and golden shiner.

Visitors looking to stretch their legs can walk a mellow, but sometimes muddy, 2.2-mile hiking trail around the lake. Half of the loop runs along York Lake, and the other half ventures further into the remote woodlands of the Sandisfield State Forest. To the east of the lake, wooded wetlands dominate the landscape, while the northern and western sections consist of mixed evergreen forests with lots of ferns and fungi that thrive in its wet, shady environment. The mellow topography of these trails makes them suitable for much more than hiking, as snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and even horseback riding are common activities. The loop trail is blazed blue and briefly follows an unpaved state forest road at its northern end.

Wildlife viewing and birding opportunities are abundant at York Lake, whether in or out of the water. Common wildlife includes otters, minks, beavers, belted kingfishers, and northern water snakes. Forest flora includes partridge berries, blueberry bushes, star flowers, ghost plants, and many ferns and mosses. Those with a good eye can spot evidence of the property's past state as a farming landscape, which became abandoned as many Western Massachusetts farmers left for New York following the Civil War.

York Lake can be accessed on East Hill Road right off Route 183. A parking lot is available by the beach, and official hours are from sunrise to a half-hour after sunset.

Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation

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Route 183 and East Hill Road, New Marlborough, MA

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Clubs, Retail & Rentals

Looking to meet up with others for team sports or group activities? Check out our list of clubs and leagues in the Berkshires. We also link to an array of outdoor recreation resources: retail shops for gear, rental facilities for equipment, and guides to get you where you want to go! Our list of summer camps will help you plan an overnight or day camp adventure for your young ones.