Fall Foliage


Leaf peepers love Western Maine! The leaves start changing in September with peak fall foliage in October. Take a scenic road trip to The Forks, Maine to see the fall colors from the river or the trail. Rafting, hiking, biking, fishing, ATVing, or kicking back on your cabin porch- there is so much to do. Watching the leaves change is an adventure in itself!

Maine Activities in the Fall


There is nothing like autumn in New England, and Maine tops the list for breathtaking vistas and amazing fall color. Crisp mornings, misty lakes reflecting the reds and oranges of maples, the brilliant white of birch trees tracing up through colorful leaves—there is nothing quite as stunning.


Whether visiting for a day or a week, fall in Maine offers plenty to see and explore among a natural riot of color. Take a raft trip on the Kennebec or Dead River. Hike to a waterfall, crunching through fallen leaves under a vivid canopy of foliage. Pack a picnic and take a drive or a motorcycle ride along back roads, stopping at overlooks and creek-side rest areas along the way. Whatever you choose, don’t forget your camera!


5 Perfect Trips for your Fall Foliage Adventure

Maine Fall Foliage Report

Keep an eye on Maine’s Official Fall Foliage Report for the latest news on the leaves! These reports are updated weekly through October once colors start to change in September. Red means peak colors, which tends to be late Sept-early October here in The Forks.  Stay tuned to the Maine fall foliage report and book your trips early if you can.  Northern Outdoors and The Forks are in Zone 5. Start your planning–Kennebec and Dead River rafting trips run through Columbus Day weekend, and the views of brilliant New England fall colors are amazing from the river!

Fall Rafting in Maine: Scenic, Unhurried, & Revitalizing for Families and Friends

Fall rafting in Maine is a truly unique experience. Crisp mornings, the reflection of colors on the water, and some special high water releases on the Kennebec and Dead Rivers all come to greet us in September and October.  The rivers are even more wild and solitary than usual (thanks to the long-departed summer crowds), making each outing more intimate. Plus, value-season rates on lodging and rafting make it even more affordable!

Fall Foliage Hikes: From Leisurely Walks to Challenging Hikes!

Northern Outdoors in Maine’s scenic North Woods is at the center of incredible hiking trails. Within minutes of Northern Outdoors Adventure Resort are several great day hikes, including Moxie Falls, a beautiful waterfall cascading 90 feet! Pleasant Pond Mountain on the Appalachian Trail is also a popular spot for checking out the colors. See The Forks Maine Recreation Map for trailhead directions.

ATV Trails: The Best Conditions of the Year Are in Fall!

For a four-wheeled adventure of a different kind, ATVs offer a great way to explore the unique beauty of fall in Maine. Leaves cover the trails and provide a striking overhead canopy under which to ride. Ride directly from your cabin door at Northern Outdoors Adventure Resort! Ample parking and room for trailers.  Many overlooks and picnic areas dot the trails offering ideal opportunities to take breaks and enjoy fantastic views. Fall ATV adventures in Maine take fun to a new level!

Fall Fly Fishing: Fish the Kennebec River Gorge!

Catch the incredible fall colors while landing a trout or salmon on one of our guided fly fishing trips in the Kennebec River Gorge. This remote section of the Kennebec River is our showcase trip. We are the only fishing outfitter that guides on this rugged section. Well known for its exciting class 4 whitewater rapids, the Upper Kennebec Gorge transforms into a pristine Maine stream and fly fishing haven for brook trout and salmon when the dam is not releasing those big water flows. It has a hidden gem of a fishery located deep in its bedrock canyon. Hold on, because at some point the water will rise and you and your fishing-turned-whitewater guide will get an exciting raft ride home.

Maine fishing - Northern Outdoors

The Best Maine Scenic Drives for Viewing Fall Colors

The Old Canada Road Scenic Byway, Route 201, passes right by our adventure resort in The Forks as it winds its way through Maine’s mountains to the Canadian border and eventually Quebec City. This stretch of US Route 201 parallels the Kennebec River, Wyman Lake, and the Dead River, and is also known as “moose alley” for its high population of moose!  If you are driving at dawn, dusk or dark, BE ALERT for moose on the road, as this is a popular time for them to come out! Travel & Leisure rates the drive from The Forks to Moosehead Lake as one of America’s Best Fall Color Drives.

Fall road trip on scenic Route 201

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Fall Foliage Trips?


We would go back to Northern Outdoors in a heartbeat and probably lodge there next time. Going there was a real highlight of our trip other than the beautiful Maine country that we were able to look at with the vibrant fall colors.

Aaron D. Westfield, MA

Trip Location

The Forks Maine rafting adventure resort map - Northern Outdoors

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