Whether you are heading east to Boston or returning to the beautiful Berkshires, drivers that utilize the Massachusetts Turnpike can relate to the ongoing frustration of when you are within a 30 mile gap between the former exits 2 and 3 (now branded as exits 10 and 41). This is the "longest" stretch of highway nationwide that is without a doubt scenic in nature, but drivers do need a buffer to relax or stretch during their pilgrimage throughout the Bay State. This affects Berkshire drivers in more ways than one as the Lee exit serves as a starting and ending point that leads to the arduous journey on I-90.

Courtesy of SPUI
Cold Front Brings Snow To New York Area
Getty Images

This has been a pet peeve of mine even from the days of when I travelled on The Pike from Connecticut and neighboring upstate New York. I find this portion of the drive very tedious and lengthy in nature. The anxiety of when you will finally get to either Lee or Westfield lingers as this portion of your trip takes a good half hour (I timed it at one point). The bright spot is there are a pair of rest areas going east and westbound as they are situated in the town of Blandford. This location serves as a catalyst for our  aforementioned article.

attachment-Mass Pike-W Blandford Plaza

(Blandford rest area exterior photo courtesy of Wikipedia)

Keep reading as I give you some background of a problem solving idea that never came to fruition. Since the 1960's, construction of an exit between former exit 2 in Lee and former exit 3 in Westfield has been the subject of ongoing discussions. However, there were never any follow-ups to implementing the idea. Four years ago, Massachusetts officials conducted a study to determine if the perimeter that houses the Blandford rest areas could serve as a arrival and departure site from the highway. The vicinity of Algerie Road in Otis has also been suggested as an alternative location. No further information on any of these proposals has been announced. We'll keep you posted.

Nicholas A. Tonelli // Flickr
Nicholas A. Tonelli // Flickr

So for the time being, fasten your seat belt and enjoy the scenic drive that we have focused on in this article. On a positive note: While you're on the road, here is a part of your excursion that will get your attention: A portion of this highway that is high in elevation is a highlight to your ride as your next opportunity to experience this momentous sight is by heading further west to South Dakota. Just be careful during winter months as I once got caught in a nasty and blinding snow squall. One mile later, there was no sign of the white stuff. Strange, if you ask me. But stranger things have happened.

Again, to quote the late, GREAT Michael Conrad on "Hill Street Blues": "BE CAREFUL OUT THERE"!!

LOOK: See how much gasoline cost the year you started driving

To find out more about how has the price of gas changed throughout the years, Stacker ran the numbers on the cost of a gallon of gasoline for each of the last 84 years. Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (released in April 2020), we analyzed the average price for a gallon of unleaded regular gasoline from 1976 to 2020 along with the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for unleaded regular gasoline from 1937 to 1976, including the absolute and inflation-adjusted prices for each year.

Read on to explore the cost of gas over time and rediscover just how much a gallon was when you first started driving.


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