Exceptional Hiking Trails in Western Maine

Recommended Maine Hiking Trails for Your Vacation

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 the famous Appalachian Trail. All you need is your daypack, water bottle, some snacks and you’re ready to hit the trail! If you want something more remote, check out our Katahdin Adventure Base Camp. It sits right at the edge of the Penobscot River and is adjacent to Baxter State Park, home to hundreds of miles of Maine’s best trails–from easy to more strenuous.

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Ask at the front desk for detailed directions to trailheads.

Rafting the Kennebec River Gorge

Kennebec River Raft & Hike Package

What’s better than a day of rafting OR hiking? Two days of rafting AND hiking.


Combine a day of whitewater rafting on the Kennebec River and two-nights of lodging at Northern Outdoors Adventure Resort in The Forks, with a one or two-night stay at Maine Huts and Trails Grand Falls backcountry lodge on the Dead River.


Enjoy the thrills of rafting and a craft beer at Northern Outdoors, then drive to Grand Falls hut on the Dead River as your base to explore, hike, fish or just relax along the Dead River, for a unique and fun-filled Western Maine Adventure getaway.


Prices for a two-night stay at Northern Outdoors, with a day of rafting and a night at Grand Falls Hut start at $286 per person… call for more details.

Hiking from Northern Outdoors Adventure Resort

The Forks Maine rafting adventure resort map - Northern Outdoors

Moxie Falls Waterfall Hike

An easy ½-mile hiking trail takes you to the top of one of the highest waterfalls in New England. View 90-foot Moxie Falls from one of several boardwalks built atop the steep, wooded gorge. The stream has numerous swimming holes and is a popular spot on warm days–bring your swim suit! A great hike for young and old with gorgeous scenery.

  • Round Trip Distance: 1.2 miles
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Distance to Trailhead from Northern Outdoors Adventure Resort: 7.2 miles


Forks Area Scenic Trail (FAST)

Directly across from the Northern Outdoors Adventure Resort is the 5-mile Forks Area Scenic Trail (FAST) system. This wonderful multi-purpose gravel trail follows the Old Canada Road along the Kennebec River north to The Forks, located at the confluence of the Kennebec and Dead River valleys. Our giant outdoor hot tub and brewery will be waiting for your return!

  • Round Trip Distance: 10 miles
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Distance to Trailhead from Northern Outdoors Adventure Resort: 100 yards


Pleasant Pond Mountain (2,480 ft.)

This is an outstanding half-day hike along the Appalachian National Hiking Trail that takes you to an open summit atop Pleasant Pond Mountain with spectacular 360° views of seemingly boundless forests and lakes. A couple of short, steep pitches keep it interesting! See Pleasant Pond Mountain hiking photos.

  • Round Trip Distance: 2.5 miles
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Distance to Trailhead from Northern Outdoors Adventure Resort: 8 miles


Moxie Bald Mountain (2,630 ft.)

This full-day hike takes you into the heart of Maine’s North Woods. The mountain is a long ridge running north-south for about 4 miles. Although the summit is not very high, it has many features of above-timberline summits because of its extended ledges and open crest.

  • Round Trip Distance: 10 miles
  • Difficulty: Moderately strenuous
  • Distance to Trailhead from Northern Outdoors Adventure Resort: 18 miles


Appalachian Trail (the AT) in The Forks

The 2,000-mile famous Appalachian Trail (AT) crosses the Kennebec River at Caratunk, a few miles south of The Forks, Maine, where our Northern Outdoors Adventure Resort is located. Northern Outdoors offers shuttles to and from the trailhead for hikers wanting to stop at the lodge. Reserve your shuttles in advance and call for current pricing.

  • Round Trip Distance: varies
  • Difficulty: Moderately strenuous to strenuous
  • Distance to Trailhead from Northern Outdoors Adventure Resort: 2.5 miles

Resort Facilities

Finish (or start) your rafting trip at our Adventure Resort right here in The Forks. From cabin tents to deluxe cabins, you can choose a lodging option that suits you best. Resort amenities include a hot tub, game room, on-site brewery, full-service restaurant and swimming pool.

Hiking From Katahdin Adventure Base Camp

Maine Rafting Katahdin base camp - Northern Outdoors

Appalachian Trail (the AT) in the Katahdin Region

The northernmost section and terminus of the AT runs right by our Katahdin Adventure Base Camp, outside Millinocket and next to Baxter State Park. Step outside your bunkhouse or campsite at Abol Bridge Campground in our Katahdin Adventure Base Camp and walk to the end of the campground to reach the AT for a challenging summit of Mt. Katahdin or beyond.

  • Round Trip Distance: varies
  • Difficulty: Moderately strenuous to strenuous
  • Distance to Trailhead from Katahdin Adventure Base Camp: 100 yards


Baxter State Park in the Katahdin Region

If you’re rafting the Penobscot River, there are an infinite number of short and multi-day hikes in the area. Our Katahdin Adventure Base Camp at Abol Bridge Campground is located near the south entrance to Baxter State Park. The 250,000-acre wilderness park is renowned for offering some of the finest hiking trails in eastern North America, with mile-high Mt. Katahdin as its centerpiece. The famous Appalachian Trail also runs through the park. Summiting Mt. Katahdin is a strenuous hike that can be accomplished in one long day. It is truly one of the most spectacular hikes you can experience, and a worthwhile additional adventure to your stay after a day of Penobscot River whitewater rafting!

  • Round Trip Distance: varies
  • Difficulty: Moderate to strenuous
  • Distance to Togue Pond Gatehouse (access point for many of the hikes in Baxter State Park) from Katahdin Adventure Base Camp: 5 miles

Base Camp

Penobscot Rafting, Camping, Bunkhouses, Restaurant & General Store at our Katahdin Adventure Base Camp overlooks Mt. Katahdin, Baxter State Park and the Appalachian Trail


We had a blast.  Topped the trip off with a hike up beautiful Moxie Falls. We highly recommend this vacation!

Kathie D. Concord, MA

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