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Sebago Lake Land Reserve is a 2.8 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Standish, Maine that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length 2.8 mi Elevation gain 150 ft Route type Loop
Dogs on leash Kid friendly Cross country skiing Fishing Hiking Horseback riding Mountain biking Snowshoeing Walking Running Lake River
Description
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Getting There

The 1,700 acre Sebago Lake Land Reserve is a managed forest intended to protect Sebago Lake, our local drinking water supply. Sebago Lake provides drinking water to 200,000 people in the greater Portland region. Many features of the Land Reserve, sharp elevation changes in particular, were shaped by glacial movement 13,000 years ago. The steep slope that runs between Bobcat Trail and Horsetail Trail is called a kame slope and was formed by glacial deposits. This stark contrast in elevation results in markedly different plant communities. A maze of springs, streams, and wetlands borders the Horsetail Trail, which can be found at the bottom of the kame slope. A comparison of plant communities between the bottom and the top of the kame slope may reveal the hidden story of soil and hydrology underfoot. The Otter Ponds are a testament to previous glacial activity and are a type of kettlehole depression. Kettlehole depressions were formed from glacial ice that became trapped in layers of sand and gravel that, once melted, left rounded, steep-sided depressions. The Otter Ponds (the collection of Half Moon Pond, Otter Ponds, and Snake Pond) are spring-fed ponds known as kettlehole lakes. These ponds are a popular destination for brook trout, largemouth bass, pickerel, and hornpout anglers and are accessible along Mallard Trail. The Otter Ponds are bordered by a set of trails that provide contrasting settings of a predominantly dense White Pine tree community along the Acadia Loop and the sun flecked Oak-dominated tree community along the Snake View and Pond View Trails. Sightings of cicadas, Great Blue Herons, Belted Kingfishers, Cedar Waxwings, snakes, several butterfly and moth species, and frogs near the Otter Ponds add to the appeal of these trails. The Otter Ponds are not the only place to spot wildlife. Vernal pools and their amphibian inhabitants are scattered throughout the land reserve. These seasonally filled pools assist in reducing erosion and polluted runoff by holding water from spring rains and slowly releasing it back into the ground. Additionally, vernal pools provide a safe habitat for breeding amphibians that rely on fishless waterbodies to lay their eggs. Several species, including the spotted salamander, blue spotted salamander, wood frog, and fairy shrimp, all rely on vernal pools exclusively to raise their broods. The animals that call these unique habitats home are food for many other animals like the Barred Owl, raccoons, foxes, and hawks. The Wetland Loop offers excellent views of such a habitat and is the perfect length for children.

Large parking area with port-a-potties at trail kiosk off Rt 35.

Portland Water District 207-774-5961 sebagolake@pwd.org 225 Douglass Street PO Box 3553 Portland, ME 04104-3553

Located at the southern end of Sebago Lake in Standish on Rt 35 just north of the intersection with Rt 114.

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Reviews (139)
Photos (62)
Recordings (133)
Completed (161)
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Sandra Boutin
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 22, 2020
HikingGreat!

A visit to the Sebago Land Reserve at Otter Ponds never disappoints! We passed some hunters and saw another hiker as well as some folks fishing and a horse and rider. Lots of waterfowl sightings as well! Lots of space for social distancing. Check it out for yourself!

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Robin MacDonald
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Hiking
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Roe Adams
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 11, 2020
Hiking

Confusing trailhead, but we just followed a small path and quickly got to VERY well-marked trails. Mostly flat, so my 4yo loved it. Highly recommend!

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Terri Morgan
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Hiking

Hard to find entrance but as suggested go to train tracks and go left.

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Olivia Haney
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 24, 2020
Hiking

Hard to find the start of the trail (walk towards the railroad tracks), but once we were on course the walk was great! Very nice fall walk. Clear trail and not heavily trafficked.

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Kara Metz
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Walking
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karissa morris
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Hiking
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J Will
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Fishing

Fishing along the railroad tracks, didn’t really follow trails. Couple of tiny bass. Lots of painted turtles and frogs to catch! Fun for kids.

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Dori Flynn
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 6, 2020
Hiking

Sebago Lake Land Reserve has nearly 15 miles of named trails. Any mapped trails can be your “loop.” Cheers!

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Crystal Bagwell
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Hiking

Not terrible, but not one I would probably do again since I don’t live super close. Lots of different trails and I never really figured out the “loop” just more zig zagging around. Right near the road too which I’m never a fan of. Some elevation changes which made it a good workout. Railroad tracks were kind of fun to take pics on.

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Chrissy Elizabeth
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 22, 2020
HikingBugs

There were so many nice trails in here! It was hard to know which trails exactly to take to do this loop but all the trails got you back to the start!

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Andrew Carney
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HikingBugs
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Devin Harrington
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Hiking

awesome trail - thanks to covid the YMCA camp is unused so its prime time to get through! the permit box is taped off so don't worry about that.

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Michael Hallett
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HikingBugs

Very pleasant this time of year. Just starting to get bugs. Confusing trails. Lots of horse poop on the road/ trail. Dog poop in bags and some trash. Playground and field is well kept as are tennis/ pickleball courts. Bring a pole and a worm and catch a bass or a trout :)

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Jessica Dziondziak
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HikingBugs
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Rob Campbell
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Running

Great location for trail running and hiking. The recording currently loaded isn't actually 2.8 miles. It's very zig-zaggy and if you walk straight it ends up being about 1.2 miles. Pet friendly area, highly recommend exploring the trail system. We recorded a 6 mile circuit a few weeks ago. Look for it and load it into your recorder if interested. Planning to make a half marathon circuit here in the near future.

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Rob Campbell
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 8, 2020
Running

Great trail system for easy hiking and trail running. We ran 6 miles (download our recording for the 6 mile trail run) and it was wonderful. Highly recommend running here. Minimal elevation change and well maintained. Playground at the YMCA parking lot. Pet friendly!

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Diana James
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HikingMuddyWashed out
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Jeff Armington
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Hiking

Very simple. Nice if local. Don’t travel far for it

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Michela Desjardins
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HikingMuddyRocky
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Katherine van Hengel
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Hiking

Kinda boring. Mixed use trail. Trash scattered throughout. Confusing route.

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Robert Nagi
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarOctober 12, 2019
Hiking

Easy trail with some nice quiet scenery. Not a lot of elevation changes and wide trails. No bugs during my hike,

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Sean Ward
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HikingBugs

Great walking, beautiful view of the lakes. Lots and lots of bugs.

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C k
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJune 14, 2019
Hiking

First time on this and I loved it. I made up my own loop and took a map. Signs are very clearly posted from what I saw. The only negative was an enormous amount of horse manure scattered all over the place, but even that is easy to see and avoid. I'll be going back soon.

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Shannon Jackson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarMay 11, 2019
Hiking

nice trail but hard to follow. not well marked. lots of other trails that interconnected. nice scenery!

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Capt. Lyman Stuart
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 18, 2018
Walking

There is a new parking lot on Rte 35 between Rte 237 and the railroad track. Fox Run is just a few yards behind the lot.

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Robert Reacher
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 28, 2018

Been on this trail what's with the map. Trail is nothing like the map. An yes we live in Maine but that still doesn't give you the right to just let your kids walk back alone in this trail......

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Deanne Belkin
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 3, 2017
Hiking

Also mixed feelings about these trails/area in general for hiking. There are a lot of opportunities to explore, but the area was a little confusing at first. I started on a trail that went downhill behind a kiosk, it led to some railroad tracks and I pretty much made it up from there! Some trails venture off from that area, but I didn't get a chance to check them out. The railroad track trail led to the YMCA Otter Pond Campgrounds. It was a nice adventure, good place for fishing and exploring with kids and dogs. Don't forget to fill out a land use permit!

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