Monday, October 13, 2008

True New England Apple Picking at its Finest

We were blessed with a gorgeous Columbus Day weekend this year and decided to hurry out to the orchard to go apple picking before the season (and the good weather) was gone. This was our first time picking apples in the Valley, so we weren't really sure where to go, but we found a great listing of pick-your-own apple orchards around the state and decided to try Roundhill Orchard in Southampton, MA.

It's very easy to find right off Rt. 10. As soon as you pull in, you can tell that Round Hill Orchard is a classic New England orchard. No fancy pre-made signs or elaborate Halloween/fall decorations or amusement-park-like activities for the kids. Unlike some of the orchards we've visited in the last couple of years, Roundhill Orchard clearly takes a back-to-basics approach. It reminds me of our annual fall trips as a kid, 3 car loads full of aunts and cousins headed out to the orchard to pick as many bushels, climb as many trees and eat as many apples as we could. This is what apple picking should be.

We were warmly greeted by the owner (and a noisy gaggle of resident geese!).

She (the owner, not the geese) explained where to find which apples - each row of trees was also labeled in case we forgot - and gave us bags to get started. Out into the field we traipsed, taking in the sights, like a birds nest resting ever so delicately above a beautiful ripe red orb, "twins" growing on almost the same stem and leftover midnight deer snacks, still hanging onto their branches.

We filled our bags with large crisp Jonagolds and small snack-size Empires, and managed to find at least a few sweet yellow Ginger Golds and classic New England McIntoshes still on the trees (both are at the end of their seasons). In fact, the only Macs we could find were in the top branches, but that didn't stop me!

An hour or so later, our bags full and my legs deliciously tired from climbing, we happily headed home to enjoy sweet bites from the fruits of our labors (pun intended).

Thanks for carrying the apples, Mr. valleywriter!!


"Prof. Kitty" said...

So fun and great photos! I love the geese pic especially. And your parenthetical referent about the pronoun "she" cracks me up. From your fellow writer geek, Prof. K!

Denise Clarke said...

What a terrific post ... I want to go find an apple tree!


Pastry Angie said...

I have been wanting to go apple picking for a couple of years, yes years now. I live in So Cal and the closest place is about an hour away. You have pushed me over the edge with your posy. I am fully enthused to go this weekend, I really want to make a big batch of apple butter for the holidays. Great photos!

Pastry Angie said...

Post not posy! Oh typos!

valleywriter said...

Pastry Angie - I'm so glad you've decided to bite the bullet and make the trip - you won't be disappointed! Enjoy & let me know how your apple butter turns out.