Happy Fall everyone! One month into senior year here, I’m trudging through such terrible tasks as film analysis of The Godfather (it’s a little Indie flick, you’ve probably never even heard of it) and in-depth dissections of the comic theory in Monty Python’s Life of Brian (of which there is a considerable amount). I am STRAIGHT OUT, I’m telling you. To prevent burnout, I’m always looking for different ways to de-stress, usually in an outdoorsy/exercise type venue. Last Friday, then, it was off on a school-organized expedition to the nearby Purgatory Chasm State Reservation in Sutton, MA! As an adventurer – why are you laughing? – the Chasm is something that I’ve always wanted to check out during my time at Holy Cross, and as you’re more than likely to discover in subsequent blogs, a big part of senior year for me is gonna be ticking items like this off the bucket list. So with my friend Shea Maunsell ’15 in tow, it was wagons ho!
I confess, I didn’t really know what to expect going into Purgatory – incidentally, doesn’t the name just fill you up with that warm, fuzzy feeling? I had a preconceived notion of a mildly rocky nature trail, the kind you’re likely to find me running on this time of year under the New England foliage. Turns out that it’s not exactly a running trail per se, but there are a few rocks scattered here and there over the terrain, so I was right about that at least.
Turns out, Purgatory Chasm is a pretty far stretch away from a casual leisure stroll. Hikers need to scramble up cliff faces and navigate through boulder fields to make it through the trail, and I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t a solid upper body workout at times. And it is unbelievable. Like I said, I’d never made the trip before, and I seriously regret it now. The excursion had an hour time limit, but I could’ve kept walking around there all day if I had the chance, exploring all the different path offshoots and – to turn a phrase from Mother Superior – climbing every mountain.
During the course of the afternoon, we teamed up with James Cannon ’17 and Hannah Solomons ’18 to fend off attacks from such ferocious woodland beasts as a miniscule rattlesnake and leaping riverbed frogs (all lethally toxic, you can be sure). At the end of the day, I can happily say we took probably the most challenging route back to the bus available. We wouldn’t have wanted it any other way!
To anyone looking for that early-Fall stress break, then, Purgatory Chasm, for your consideration: a labyrinth of sheer rock walls and cliff formations that can keep you sweating for an entire afternoon… When can I go back??!?<< Older Entries