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Purgatory Chasm State Reservation, Sutton

(4.7/5 based on 170+ reviews on the web)
Purgatory Chasm State Reservation is a Massachusetts state park located off Route 146 on Purgatory Road in the town of Sutton. The park, managed by the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation, is notable for its.25mi, 70ft chasm of granite bedrock featuring abrupt precipices and boulder caves in which ice lingers into the early summer.HistorySeveral theories have been proposed to account for the chasm's creation. According to one, the chasm was created when glacial meltwater from a burst ice dam ripped out blocks of bedrock at the end of the last Ice Age (14,000 years ago). Purgatory Chasm was declared a state park in 1919.RecreationThe reservation is open to picnicking and hiking; rock climbing is allowed by special permit only. There are 2mi of hiking trails around the chasm. Although the park is open year round, the chasm itself is closed to hikers and climbers during the winter months because of ice hazards.The reservation includes picnic areas with grills, a visitors center, and playground.In artA book of poems by Susan Edmonds Richmond titled Purgatory Chasm, a song by Holly Hanson of Neptune's Car titled "Lover's Leap," and the Steve Ulfelder novel Purgatory Chasm were inspired by hikes in the chasm.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • Been to Purgatory dozens of times as a kid and adult. A neat place to visit for a moderately challenging hike and striking views of what nature did to this area millions of years ago; huge rocks, clif...  more »
  • This glacier formed chasm provides breathtaking views from all sides. Whether you look down at the tops of trees to the tumble of rocks below, follow the blue blazed trail over giant boulders to the p...  more »
  • We love to go here and walk the trails and climb the rocks. Great for young kid (walking) who love exploring nooks and crannies of ancient rocks! Bring a picnic and eat at the tables and then continue...  more »