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Maine Waterfalls
7 Beautiful Maine Waterfalls You Absolutely Must See

Beautiful Maine Waterfalls

August 25th, 2016 by Roy Forsberg

Everyone loves waterfalls! The sounds of water crashing to the ground. The beauty of glistening and spraying water everywhere. The power of nature carving pathways through the ancient granite. Luckily, there are many beautiful Maine waterfalls to explore in our area! Plus, they are all within driving distance from our Maine bed and breakfast.

Wolf Cove Inn is a stunning Lakefront bed and breakfast surrounded by the beauty of Maine. We are ideally located near all the best outdoor adventures. When staying in one of our cozy rooms you will experience features such a gas fireplace, Whirlpool tub, stunning lake views and more. Before heading out on your adventure, you will also enjoy a delicious complimentary breakfast. Learn more about the perfect getaway at our Maine B&B with an outdoor adventure to the areas best waterfalls.
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Read on to find out about our Northerly Maine Waterfall Tour including 7 stunning waterfalls.

Explore Maine Waterfalls

Maine waterfalls have seasons to them corresponding to the four seasons. Springtime brings the melting of the snowpack. Consequently, the waterfalls are usually raging from the run off. In summer, the falls are often quieter but provide great opportunities to safely cool off in the watering holes at their bases. Autumn brings breathtaking fall foliage that paints a beautiful canvas of color around the waterfalls. Finally, wintertime brings on dazzling crystal formations of frozen flows. No matter the season, a tour of Maine waterfalls should be on your “to do” list during your next Maine getaway!

There are a lot of waterfalls to see around these parts. Therefore, we’ll knock off these Maine waterfalls in two days via two tours. The first tour takes a northerly route with 7 waterfalls, bringing you fairly close to the Canadian border.

Northerly Tour Interactive Map

1. Great Falls – Auburn, Maine

Stop B on our interactive map.

  • Located just a short 20 minute drive from our Maine bed and breakfast.
  • Enjoy huge, raging falls after big rains. Plus, there is no hiking involved!
  • Quick Tip: Indulge in a locally brewed beer at Gritty’s right around the corner.

First up on the northerly tour are Great Falls in Auburn, about twenty minutes from the Wolf Cove Inn. The Androscoggin River drives these falls. The river separates the cities of Auburn and Lewiston Maine. Back in the day the falls powered the local mills.

View these falls from the Auburn Riverwalk.  Access the Riverwalk by parking near the Hilton Garden Inn and walking to the left of the Inn to the Riverwalk.

Next up are a series of falls in the Carrabassett Valley region, about 1.5 hour drive north from Auburn. Depart the parking area and take a right onto Turner Street. A quarter mile down the road you will pick up Route 4.

You can follow Route 4 all the way through Farmington. However, once I hit Livermore Falls, I prefer taking the much more scenic Route 133 to Farmington. Once you cross the Androscoggin River in Livermore Falls, take a right at the light and then the first left. Within a few hundred feet you are on Route 133. Follow Route 133 to the end in Farmington, then take a right back onto Route 4. Follow Route 4 through downtown Farmington. A couple miles outside of downtown Farmington you will pick up Route 27 north. This will take you to the next four Maine waterfalls after about a 35 minute drive.

A side note. Be sure to stop at the Orange Cat Cafe in Kingfield before heading to Reed Falls. It’s funky and they have great sandwiches. I especially like the Jalapeno Chicken Salad Wrap. Say “hi” to Suzanne for me when you stop in.

2. Reed Falls – Kingfield, Maine

Stop C on our interactive map.

  • A 1.5 hour drive from the Wolf Cove Inn.
  • Reed Falls is an easy 15 minute hike perfect for those looking to experience the beauty of Maine on a shorter hike.
  • Quick Tip: Grab sandwiches at Orange Cat in Kingfield located just a few miles before the falls.

Access Reed Falls north of downtown Kingfield, just before entering Carrabassett Valley. The starting point for Reed falls begins on Route 27 between Kingfield and Carrabassett. About 3.8 miles north of the intersection of Routes 16 and 27 in downtown Kingfield, look for a small parking area on the Carrabassett River side of the road. If you come to the Claybrook (Ira Mountain) bridge across the river, you’ve gone too far. The trail starts behind the guardrail across Route 27 from the parking area. Follow the trail along Reed Brook about one mile to the falls.

It is a very pleasant hike along the brook. In one area, you’ll use a rope to assist you across a small stream feeding the brook and as you approach the falls you’ll need to climb over one fallen tree and under another. Taken during the dry summer of 2016, the falls in the photo are quiet. With heavy snow melt, you will find a torrent of water.

Maine Waterfalls

3. Houston Brooks Falls – Carrabassett Valley

Stop D on our interactive map.

  • Located only 10 minutes from the prior stop at Reeds Falls
  • An easy 5 minute hike from the parking area
  • Quick Tip: Bring a bathing suit in the warm months because there is swimming hole at the base of the waterfall!

Next, head north on Route 27 to the center of Carrabassett Valley, demarcated by Tufulio’s restaurant. From there turn off Route 27 onto the Carriage Road just after passing Tufulio’s. In about .25 mi turn left onto the Houston Brook Road, a dirt road. 0.4 miles in you will see a sign telling you to stop, motorized traffic not permitted any further. However, the locals will tell you it is OK to drive up there.

Another 0.3 miles down the road you will intersect with the Narrow Gauge Pathway airfield trailhead. Stay to the right here. Process another 1.0 miles at which point you will ascend a short pitch and you will find a parking pull off on the left with room for three or four cars. A short hiking trail leads from the road down to the falls. At one point you can proceed straight and that will take you to the edge of a cliff overlooking the falls. To the left you will find the trail leading down to the base of the falls and a nice swimming area.

If you prefer to hike to the falls, instead of turning onto the Carriage Road off or route 27, proceed up route 27 a bit, passing the airfield on the right. You will then see a sign for the Airport Narrow Gauge Pathway trailhead. Follow the trail to the intersection described above and follow the road 1.0 mile to the spur to the falls. If you like, pop down to the brook on any of the side trails along the way. Maine Waterfalls

4. Poplar Stream Falls – Carrabassett Valley

Stop E on our interactive map.

  • Just a short 5-minute drive from the prior stop at Houston Brooks Falls
  • Quick Tip: There are 2 trailheads! Option 1 is a short, easy 5 minute walk to the falls. While option 2 is an easy/moderate 45 minute walk to the falls.

You can access Poplar Stream Falls a variety of ways. For quickest access to the falls from the Houston Brook parking area, return to the Carriage Road and turn left. Continue 1.5 miles up the Carriage Road and take a right onto the service road for the Poplar Stream Hut of the Maine Huts And Trails network. Follow this dirt road for 0.2 miles to a parking area. Just beyond the green gate you will see a sign for the upper falls viewing vista, about a 100 feet walk. When done there, backtrack to the gate and head over the bridge to access the trail leading to the lower falls.

After exploring the falls, if you are into ascending a mountain at this point, there is a great hike up the Little Bigelow Mountain a few miles further down the Carriage Road. Head east on the Carriage Road to the end and take a left. About a quarter mile down the road you’ll find a parking lot on the right at the AT crossing. Across the road on the left is the trailhead. Check out my video of a hike with Gabby and Ellie this past fall (Sept 2016).

There is another route to see the Poplar Stream Falls where you’ll hike for about 45 minutes to the falls. 0.2 miles into the Carriage road from Route 27 turn right onto Gauge Road. Here you access the Maine Huts and Trails Gauge Road trailhead. You will find a kiosk with information on how to get to the falls. It’s a pleasant 2.3 mile hike to the falls area, following along Poplar Stream most of the way.  Explore the lower falls basin, then head up the stone staircase for the upper falls.

Maine Waterfalls

Upper Poplar Stream Falls

Poplar Stream Falls Maine Waterfall Hike

Lower Poplar Stream Falls

5. West Mountain Falls – Carrabassett Valley

Stop F on our interactive map.

  • Located within a 10 minute drive from the prior stop at Poplar Stream Falls.
  • The trail to West Mountain Fall is an easy/moderate 15 minute hike. The fall are stunning with a large swimming hole at the base!
  • Quick Tip: Enjoy gorgeous scenery on the patio while eating lunch at the Sugarloaf Mountain Golf Course just two minutes away from the falls parking lot (the fish tacos are wonderful!).

Departing the Carriage Road, turn right onto Route 27 and head north until about 6 miles and turn left onto the Sugarloaf Access Road. Turn right onto West Mountain Road heading to the Sugarloaf Golf course shortly after you pass the condo check in center. Access the West Mountain Falls via a trailhead just before you reach the Sugarloaf Golf Course parking lot.  As you are proceeding to the golf course on West Mountain Road, you will pass under a chairlift, at which point the road forks.  Take the right fork. Once you finish a sweeping, descending turn you will spot a small dirt parking area large enough for 2-3 cars.

Once you park proceed to the trailhead just down the road a bit further on the left hand side. From there, it is about a 10 minute hike to the falls. Once at the falls, you can take a dip in the natural pool formed at the base of the falls. I’ll warn you though – mountain run off water can be quite nippy.

West Mountain Falls Maine

If you finish these falls around lunchtime, be sure to pop on down to the golf course for lunch at Strokes in the golf course clubhouse. The food is great, as are the views looking down the ninth hole and across to the eleventh hole from the tenth hole tee box. Furthermore, if it is a Thursday or a Saturday, you can head up the Sugarloaf Access Road to the base area and take a scenic chairlift ride. In addition to the terrific views of the mountains and valleys, you’ll also get a sense of the skiing terrain at Sugarloaf. Pick up your tickets at the Outpost Adventure Center. You can also do some ziplining and Segway touring there too.

6. Smalls Falls – Phillips, Maine

Stop G on our interactive map.

  • On your way to Small Falls, enjoy a beautiful, scenic 55 minute drive from our Maine bed and breakfast.
  • The falls are located right off of route 4 (no hiking involved!) and feature large, multi-tiered falls with swimming and diving!
  • Quick Tip: There is a chance you will get to see a moose in what’s locally known at Moose Alley – the stretch of route 16 from Eustis to Rangeley.

Next up – Smalls Falls. Head back down West Mountain Road and hang a left back onto the Sugarloaf Access Road.  At the end, take a left onto Route 27 north. Follow this to Stratton where you will pick up Route 16 west toward Rangeley. This road is called “Moose Alley”. Mid day you aren’t likely to see any, but if you were traveling at dawn or dusk, well that’s another matter.

If time permits on your way to Rangeley, visit a scenic overlook called Quill Hill. A short detour offers some great 360 degree views of the area mountains and plains.

Once in Rangeley, you will hook up with Route 4 again.  Follow it south about 12 miles and you will spot a sign for Smalls Falls on your right. Access the falls right from the parking area – no hiking involved! Picnic facilities are also available.

beautiful waterfalls in Maine - Smalls Falls

Smalls Falls is the last site on this day’s journey. To return to the Wolf Cove Inn, follow Route 4 south to Route 117 west in Turner, to Route 124 south in Buckfield to Route 11 south in Mechanic Falls and from there you are less than 10 minutes to our Maine bed and breakfast on Tripp Lake.

If you still want one more bit of falling water to finish off day one, head over to Wortherly Brooks in Poland. From Route 11, pick up Route 26 south in Poland, then a left onto Route 122 and then a mile down the road, a left onto Empire Road.

7. Wortherly Brook – Poland, Maine

Stop H on our interactive map.

  • Located just minutes from our bed and breakfast in Poland, ME.
  • Quick Tip: Visit during the spring melt or after a heavy rain to really experience the best of Wortherly Brook.

Access the mountain biking/hiking trail system off of Empire Road.  Boulders border the gravel parking area on the right just prior to the main entrance to the park. Follow the trailhead by the kiosk a short way until you reach an intersection, then turn right. Follow the double track trail across a small bridge spanning Wortherly Brook. Shortly thereafter, on your left you will find access to the East Ridge Trail.  Follow this trail for about 1/3 a mile until you reach a pine grove on the ridge. You will spot an easy to miss trail leading down the ridge to the cascades. Naturally, they are more interesting during spring melt or after a heavy rain.

top maine waterfall hikes - Wortherly Brook

Once done with Wortherly Brook, head back to the Maine bed and breakfast to relax before dinner.  Be sure to get back in time for our spectacular sunsets.

Romantic Maine bed and breakfast

Find out five more must see beautiful waterfalls in Maine in our second tour that heads off to the northwest.

So now that you know about these great Maine waterfalls, be sure to book your romantic getaway in Maine at the Wolf Cove Inn. Right on Tripp Lake in Poland, Maine, we are an award winning lakefront Inn surrounded by the beauty and peace of mother nature. At the Wolf Cove Inn you’ll enjoy the gorgeous property, gracious hospitality, spectacular sunsets and daily gourmet breakfasts.

The Perfect Hiking Package in Maine

Book your favorite room or cabin and save 15% on our guest’s favorite add-ons during your visit with our Experience Maine Package.

This package includes:

  • Lakeside Pizzeria Dining for two or a Cheese & Charcuterie Platter
  • A bottle of local wine
  • A bag of locally roasted coffee
  • Two keepsake Wolf Cove Inn coffee mugs.

Plus, add this package to a three night stay and take $50 off the third night! Find out more.
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