The caretakers for the Gould Farm have recently posted signs marking the property line.
ADAMS, Mass. — Those looking to trek up Mount Greylock from Gould Road may have noticed that there is no parking near the head of the Bellows Pipe Trail.
Nor are they allowed to travel all the way up Gould Road.
There is a reason for that.
The short cut to the Bellows Pipe trail head is actually on private property. Only recently have the owners posted no-trespassing signs.
Visitors have long parked along the roadway.
"Essentially, the public has been parading across the property," Town Administrator Jonathan Butler said last week.
The road was built years ago and cuts through Gould Farm. Most recently, the late Joseph Dean Jr., a longtime selectman and firefighter, was the caretaker and had allowed visitors to use it. When he died, one of his sons, David Dean, took over and posted signs informing the public where the land become private. Dean did not reply to several requests for comment.
The move has raised questions around town about ownership and the state and town's funds that went into the road. The town, through a state grant, invested nearly $2 million
in electric and water infrastructure on Gould and Thiel roads for the future development of the Greylock Glen. But Butler says the town stopped just about at the property line.
The plans for the Greylock Glen are not affected by the privacy issues, said Butler. The town's plans for access are all before that property and a road isn't needed where the signs are.
That doesn't mean the town isn't involved with the new signage. Butler said the town's attorney is currently researching the history to find out exactly what is a public right of way and is working with both the property owners and the state Department of Conservation and Recreation to figure out new signage to direct visitors where to go.
"We have a good dialogue with the owner," Butler said.
He added that the restriction on access is "privacy related." Once the town has a handle on the history and the legal aspects of the line, Butler said he will be able to develop a better plan to direct visitors to the trails.