Mountain Day

Is it Mountain Day yet?

When fall weather sets in, speculation begins about the date for Mountain Day, a College tradition since 1838, the year after Mount Holyoke was founded. On Mountain Day, classes and other obligations are cancelled. In a nod to Mary Lyon, students are invited to balance their intellectual pursuits with outdoor activities.  

The actual date is kept secret until it is announced by the early-morning pealing of the bell in Mary Lyon Hall.

Mountain Day typically involves climbing to the Summit House atop Mount Holyoke. At the top, ice cream is usually served to the intrepid hikers, who emerge from either a heavily wooded trail or a paved road to the top.

Post your Mountain Day images and reports on Twitter, Facebook, and other social media via hashtag #MtnDayMHC.


  • Buses will leave from the Blanchard bus stop to convey hikers to the foot of the mountain.
  • The shuttle van is an accessible vehicle and provides transportation to the top of the mountain from Blanchard Circle.
  • The first buses/shuttles leave at about 9:00 am. The last bus/shuttle to the mountain leaves at 1:30 pm, and the last return bus/shuttle is at 3:00 pm.
  • Off-campus events, PVTA buses, and Five College classes all proceed as usual. Regularly scheduled Mount Holyoke classes resume at 4:00 pm.
  • Dining Commons hours will be unaffected by Mountain Day.
  • Ice cream is served on the mountain from 9:00 am–1:00 pm.
  • Staff Council serves treats in front of Blanchard from 11:30 am–1:30 pm for staff members who can't get away to climb.