Posted on October 6, 2019 and last updated on October 09, 2019

Dead River Trail, West Forks


  • Preserve Size: N/A
  • Trail Mileage: Varies
  • Pets: yes
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Sights: Dead River, picnic tables

You can walk 1/2 mile or almost 50 miles — this trail goes and goes and goes. The sign at the trailhead says it’s 45 miles to Jackman, 44 miles to Eustis, 15 miles to Grand Falls Hut, 25 miles to Grand Falls, and 22 miles to Coburn Mountain! I recommend biking or skiing this path, but if you want to walk, it’s very pretty as it hews closely to the river. At about two miles, it passes by a few idyllic picnicking spots with tables and fire pits. No ATVs are allowed. I’d say the first two miles of the gravel path (maybe more?) is wheelchair accessible for sturdy wheels.

You start the trail across the street, Route 201, from Hawk’s Nest Lodge. It has good signage and is well taken care of. In about 1/2 mile, you’ll emerge on the property of a rafting company. Walk across the grassy property to catch the gravel road again on the other side, staying close to the river. You’ll walk by a cemetery and continue past a gate. We traipsed along for 2.4 miles to the junction of the Maine Huts and Trails system, and admired the serenity of the riverside spot down here.

Directions: The trail begins across the street from Hawk’s Nest Lodge on Route 201 in West Forks. Ask for permission to park in the lodge with the purpose of walking the trails; the friendly staff will very likely say “no problem!”


Let me know if you have any trail updates or corrections!