Caribou Trail

HARD 18 reviews

Caribou Trail is a 5.6 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Bethel, Maine that offers the chance to see wildlife and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking and trail running and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
5.6 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1879 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

dogs on leash

hiking

trail running

forest

views

wildlife

Directions from Bethel, ME: Travel west on US 2 approximately 9 - 10 miles, turn south onto SR 113. Travel over the two small bridges of Evans Brook and look for the trailhead on the left side of the road. It is approximately 4 -5 miles from US 2.

hiking
2 months ago

From the parking lot of the Caribou trail you can either take the Caribou trail or the Mud Brook Trail. We took the Caribou trail up which actually starts as a downhill. The trail goes along the river at times and does not climb up for a long time. I would not rate the trail difficult if you are in shape. Eventually the trail does climb up, it also switches back and forth over the river. At times it is hard to know where the trail goes, but we managed that. The top of the Caribou trail is not above the tree line and there is a sign where that trail ends. I can not imagine anyone would at that point turn around because you have not summited yet. At this point you turn left as the sign shows and get on the Mud Brook trail. The assent is a little steeper here, and you are still a ways from the top. At the top the views are 360 degrees, a couple we passed on the way said they have hiked many of the 4000 footers and this view by far surpassed all of them. Once we got to the top, and took pictures we could not find where the trail went, it took us 20 minutes to finally find this yellow mark on the rock. Beyond that point the yellow markers or cairns were really hard to find, we kept on shouting out to each other, okay got it! Once we were below tree line there are NO markers at all. You follow a brook off and on and I was perpetually concerned we were not on the trail, but just following the brook, very disconcerning. I am not sure why trails are not marked better. Very pretty trail, big river on the Caribou trail, smaller brook on the descent, Mud Brook trail, 2 hours up, 1 1/2 hours down, due to storm the bridge was out and we had to do a lot of stone stepping over the river and chimming over a fallen tree so that could of added time to the ascent. I have never written a review before, but I felt I had to because for me the other reviews were off the mark. Would of given 5 starts if the trail was marked.

backpacking
2 months ago

Typically spectacular Evans Notch hike. First hiked on August 22, 1992, and took Mud Brook Trail to top of Mount Caribou and looped back to road using Caribou Trail. Took about 1.5 hours up. Returned to backpack it on September 3-4, 1995, overnight. Went up Mud Brook Trail from parking lot, taking about 2.3 hours. Tented about 0.2 miles beyond peak. Great views from top. Loped back to lot the next day using Caribou Trail. Took only 1.5 hours down Caribou Trail. Generally easy hike, with some steep.

3 months ago

Quite the challenge but beautiful view from the top!!!

hiking
4 months ago

A nice steady climb through a dense forest. No views until the summit but a beautiful vista at the top that made it worth it. There's an awesome swimming hole right at the start of the trail that makes for a great spot to refresh after you're done.

6 months ago

This was a very nice trail. Great workout and beautiful 360 views at the top.

hiking
Monday, August 01, 2016

Ascended The Muddy Brook Trail to the summit then descended the Caribou Trail to finish the Caribou Loop. So glad we came down the Caribou Trail as it is a very rugged trail and not the greatest views but Muddy Brook Trail was beautiful. Another plus to coming down Caribou trail was the fact that there is a beautiful waterfall with a swimming hole about two miles away from the parking lot. Hopped in, cooled off, and by the time we got to the parking lot you wouldn't have even know we hiked! so refreshing. Took two of my dogs and they loved it!

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

In support of other reviewer: trail is tricky to follow up on the summit area of Mt. Caribou. Very spotty trail markers- paint long faded and worn off, few cairns, and signs of travel/ trail not always so obvious.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Nice trail. Did the loop up Mud Brook Trail down Caribou.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Fairly easy trail go up Muddy Brook and down Caribou

hiking
Sunday, June 19, 2016

I would call this trail difficult. Beautiful flowing water most of the way up with a great swimming hole that's easy to miss. Starts off deceivingly easy and progressively becomes more difficult. Amazing views at the top. I did it on a summer Saturday and only saw 2 other people. My only complaint; literally zero signs or trail markers!! As an inexperienced hiker I got lost twice and ended up on the mountain (with swim and breaks) for 5 hours. Was planning to descend down muddy brook trail but was unable to locate it from the summit. My athletic lab was very tired on the way down! Bring bug spray and a bathing suit!

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Great hike! Lots of water, nice cascades, great views, for little effort.

hiking
Sunday, August 09, 2015

My sister and I did this last August with our dog. It took us about 2 hours up and an hour down. Perfect half day hike for people who are in good shape but don't necessarily hike often. The panoramic view from the top was awesome and very well worth the hike.

3 months ago

4 months ago

hiking
6 months ago

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Wednesday, June 22, 2016