Best Loop Hikes: New Hampshire's White Mountains to the Maine Coast
by Jeffrey Romano (The Mountaineers Books)
© Jeffrey Romano/The Mountaineers Books. All Rights Reserved.
My family and I thoroughly enjoyed this hike. The trail is really fun as you hike along the gorge. We all stopped on the sidetrails to the falls along the way. Our favorite falls was buttermilk falls, a great private swimming place in the sun. This trail is a good workout, it took us 7 hours to do.
Great trail! It has a little of everything for everyone; falls, overlooks, cliffs, pools of water to swim in......just watch for leeches in some of the pools. We went for a swim to cool off and came out with leeches all over. Still worth it, cooled us off. I didn't know if my kids could handle the trail, but they did it and had a good time.
By far and away my favorite hike in Maine. They call Gulf Hagas the "Grand Canyon of Maine." This aptly named hike takes you on a walk of the edge of a steep gorge. The first half of the hike is littered with lookout points that are all worth your time. Plan on setting aside an entire day to slowly meander through the region. Stop and swim at every opportunity you get. The water is fresh, clean, freezing and most of all refreshing. There are a couple of really great waterfalls on this hike. Some of which you can swim up to and slip in behind them. The trail is really a 4.5 mile hike followed by a 4.5 mile walk on flat ground. Allow most of your time on this trip for the first 4.5 miles because when you turn the corner and hike through the woods on the way back it is simply a quick flat hike back on solid ground. A short distance from the trail head you will need to ford a river/stream which in most cases requires the taking on and off of your shoes/boots. Getting to the hike can be a challenge though, Depending on which way your come into Mary-Jo you may re required to drive for up to 10 miles on a poorly maintained dirt road. My first time out I turned around short of reaching the rangers station thinking for sure I was driving to the middle of a logging operation. Don't forget to bring your own water because despite the sign in the window they do not sell water at the ranger station. Camping there is a great experience too. Watch out for ticks I got Lyme last year on this hike.
Great day trail
Not too difficult. Nice views of falls and river. Had luch on the rocks over the river.
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