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Taste of Summer “Blues” at Greenfield State Park

Posted on by Andrew Reynolds

It’s the beginning of another summer at Greenfield State Park, marked by its signature sights, smells, sounds, tastes, and feel. My skin sizzled under the simmering sun while a smokey scent of burgers and hot dogs on the grill wafted around me. Bountiful blueberry bushes stood tall against the shoreline, waiting to be picked. The glistening sand sparkled and the calm lake waters reflected the shimmering rays of sunlight as kids giggled and romped about, splishing and splashing with fervor.

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What started as my first attempt to enjoy a swimming excursion at a New Hampshire state park turned into a sun-soaked afternoon with a surprise blueberry-eating extravaganza. And I wasn’t the only person with swimming on my mind.┬áIn fact, the sand was overflowing with people ready to enjoy the early days of summer.

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The parking lot closest to the public beach was close to full, but there was plenty of room for more visitors.

Not being able to find a spot on the public beach for my towel and cooler, I began to search for a secluded section of shoreline. That’s when I spotted the blueberry bushes… or what I nicknamed: the Great Wall of Blues.

Blueberries as far as the eye can see.

Blueberries as far as the eye can see.

The bushes formed a wall about 6 to 7 feet tall and surrounded the lake along most of the shoreline. If that doesn’t sound like enough berries for you, there are even more bushes along the walking trails, offering more than enough foraging opportunities.

These unripened blueberries were growing over a fallen tree about 2 feet from the water's edge.

These unripened blueberries were growing over a fallen tree about 2 feet from the water’s edge.

A single ripe blueberry sits among a bunch of greenberries.

A single ripe blueberry sits among a bunch of greenberries.

More blueberries.

More blueberries.

Although the best time to harvest and pick blueberries in New Hampshire is from mid-July to late-August, I found plenty of ripened berries ready to be picked and eaten.

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After fulfilling my fruit fix, I snuck into an opening that led to a private shoreline spot perfect for resting in the sun.

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From here, the entirety of Otter Lake was visible.

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Paddlers cruised silently around the undeveloped lake as the faint calls of a loon echoed through the thick humid air.

After a quick break sitting on the edge of the sand, I walked into the lake.

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The reflection of the leaves show on the sand through Otter Lakes clear waters.

Even though it was still cold from a cool spring, the fresh water provided the perfect solution for a hot and sticky summer day. I basked in the sun and floated around aimlessly as the serene sounds of nature combined with the noisy blissfulness of the beach-goers.

Although I’m usually more of a private and secluded adventurer, I was enjoying the positivity emanating from the sands filled with people, families, and friends. Who wouldn’t be in good spirits in such a pleasant park?

At the camper's beach, there were less people scattered on the sand.

At the camper’s beach, there were less people scattered across the sand.

Other than a pristine and refreshing lake for swimming, the park offers many other activities across its 400 acres including several small ponds for fishing, foot trails for easy hiking, a plethora of campground sites, a park store, as well as restrooms and showers.

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Because of its blueberry surplus, Greenfield State Park’s beach is one of my favorite state park beaches! What state park beach is your favorite, and why? (I’m thinking dedicating a blog to detailing my personal top 10 and could use some inspiration.)

Happy summer, everybody!

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About Andrew Reynolds

Howdy folks! My name is Andrew Reynolds. I've lived in New Hampshire for more than 4 years, and I recently graduated with a B.A. in Journalism from Keene State College. To put it simply, I'm a writer and photographer who loves everything about the outdoors--including but not limited to kayaking, mountain-biking, fishing, swimming, camping, backpacking, hiking, rock-climbing, picnicking, walking the dog(s), and meditating at a peaceful vista. If I had to describe myself (and, therefore, my blog) in three words, I would choose the following: curious, adventurous, and quirky. I think curious fits because of my interest and passion in learning and education, which pushes me to research on my own as well as talk to the experts about the science and history behind our environment (ecology, geology, biology, astronomy, etc.). Adventurous is representative because of my everlasting wanderlust and dedication to adventuring to the state's countless "hidden gems," tranquil day-trips, and other interesting escapades. Lastly, but most importantly, I chose quirky because of the perspective I like to offer through this blog. Being disconnected from our natural environment has intense consequences, not only for our personal health and sanity, but indirectly for the well-being of others--present and future. One of the biggest reasons for why I enjoy the outdoors so much is because it's the most satisfying way for me to break out of the bubble, stray from the hustle-bustle, and gather a fresh outlook on what's truly important in life. I hope that documenting and sharing my experiences in this blog will serve as a vehicle to inspire more people to understand, care for, and appreciate our environment, as well as the health of our planet and its inhabitants. Happy (and safe) trails everyone! View all posts by Andrew Reynolds →
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2 Responses to Taste of Summer “Blues” at Greenfield State Park

  1. Pingback: Enjoying Nature’s Candy at Pitcher Mountain : The New Hampshire Division of Parks and Recreation

  2. avatar Just Me says:

    We’ve been camping a couple times a year at Greenfield State Park and never realized there were all those beautiful blueberry bushes! Next year we’ll definitely have blueberry foraging on our agenda. Blueberry pancakes for breakfast! Blueberry cobbler for dessert – YUMMO!!!


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