On the Byways of Western Massachusetts
With Carol Colitti Levine & Dr. Gary Levine, Photographer
Valley Living Magazine
2006 – 2010
Ditching navigation maps and apps, Carol Colitti Levine’s aversion to driving on highways steered her to explore and write about hidden gems along the scenic byways of the Pioneer Valley & Western New England for a local magazine, Valley Living. Carol convinced the talented Dr. Husband to collaborate as her photographer.
She named this quarterly travel column The Side Trek.
Click to see a few of them:
2010 – 2016
The Side Trek blog was born in 2010. Carol’s quirky take on politics, current events, books, and bizness. Her Back Roads Thoughts.
Its Travel Treks page continued to focus on hidden gems along the back roads of Western Massachusetts as photos below show.
Signs of the Times
The “Valley” has gorgeous vistas and architecture. It also has many colleges, farms and factories. Conservatives and liberals living together. Sometimes in the same house!
Epitomized by these yard signs during the presidential primaries of 2016. As we stopped to take a photo, the woman homeowner opened her door and yelled, “Do you think we will still be married after the election?” Hmmm. Wonder if they are.
Route 5 Hatfield
Autumn Sojourn with Jean Jean
Ashfield & Conway
Clark Art Institute
Special trek to see Van Gogh and Nature, a limited exhibition. Vincent’s study of the impressionists in France. Arles. Auvers.
Super Bowl bonus. Since the Patriots beat the Seahawks, the Seattle Art Museum loaned The Clark Albert Bierstadt’s wall-sized masterpiece Puget Sound on the Pacific Coast.
Susan B. Anthony Birthplace
Strawberry Picking Polka Dots
Turn of the Calendar
Spring in the Valley
Fall Photo Contest
mAdBen v. Dr. Dad
Autumnal Still Life
Mystery of Blue Hill
Mid-summer night’s dinner at Blue Hill restaurant in Greenwich Village. Famous for fresh produce from its farm. Locavore award. James Beard winner. Alas. Our dinner’s vegetables disappeared. They never appeared on our plates. So, we decided to search Blue Hill Farm, the eatery’s namesake to investigate. Up the road on a pristine day, we found the culprit, overlooking the Housatonic River. We didn’t spy a stalk of corn or a wandering squash. Just a Jewish cow family. The Holsteins. Way down the hill. A view. To a kill?
Connecticut River Valley
Route 5 Whately
Original Williams House
The Good Time Stove Company
Spring Weekday Trek
William Cullen Bryant Homestead
Where he retreated to pen pastoral poetry and think Thanatopsis thoughts.
So Long Side Trek!
Carol and photographer Dr. Husband said goodbye to Western Massachusetts in July of 2016, moving on to SideTrek . NYC.
They loved their years of Side Treks along the Pioneer Valley’s country byways. And their many trips to Shelburne Falls.