Explore the most popular trails near Bethel with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Bethel, Maine Map
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Great hike, very moderate, basically easy. With the leaves on the ground, can be hard in spots to stay on trail as there are basically no tree blazes. Well worth the time, beautiful views.

Great hike! Took Caribou up and Middy Brook down. Loved the terrain & variety of the route. The views were incredible. And we may have chosen the most perfect foliage day ever.

hiking
14 days ago

Nice little trail with limited, but beautiful views to the north and west.

I would definitely recommend taking the Caribou Trail up and looping to take the Mud Brook Trail down. The Caribou Trail was a gradual climb with a few stream cross points especially where the bridge is washed out, but with careful footing it’s manageable. Once to the summit you’ll enjoy gorgeous 360 views. The tricky part is finding the Mud Brook Trail. There are very warn and sparse yellow blazes and arrows and at points it doesn’t seem like a trail at all. Without the help of a fellow hiker who had been up there several times I’d still be there! Once you’re on the Mud Brook Trail it’s steep and ledgey so, again, careful footing. Overall very enjoyable hike! I went during peak foliage and it was breathtaking...and chilly! Bring layers.

gorgeous view at the top! We started at 11am, finished about 5pm.

1 month ago

tough climb but the view is worth every bead of sweat earned. would recommend even to those out of shape like me. I made it and would do it again.

A good day hike and I will rate as difficult. Be careful on the ridge it is very poorly marked.

Love this trail! As someone else mentioned, you need to continue past the first viewpoint to the sign for the summit, and then about .25 mile further for the best views.

Awesome hike, definitely worth it for the view!

Trail is not easy should be rated as moderate for sure. Steep in many areas. Went up the north trail and down the south trail. For sure the views were better on the south side. Trails need to be fixed in some areas where logging has been happening. Also trail is very thin in areas, in need of work.

Gave it 5 stars because it’s got a little of everything: woods, hand-over-hand elevation, stream crossings, waterfalls, wading pools, bears (well, just one reported), and of course that spectacular view at the peak.

The Brook was not the only mud on this hike, thanks to some recent rain. But the up-side is a flowing, babbling brook you can hear for most of the hike and several waterfalls with nice wading pools. Next time we’ll go up Caribou Trail and down Mud Brook and build in some time to lounge at one of the waterfalls with a pool beneath it (damn, my photo of it is gone) on the way up. Caribou Trail has more stream crossings and waterfalls than Mud Brook Trail, ironically.

On the way up Mud Brook, we saw lots of bear scat (well, it tasted like bear, but I guess it could have been deer or moose). Met a lone hiker on the way down Caribou Trail who confirmed the scat was bear: she spooked one on the trail. Keep your dogs leashed.

Elevation gain up Mud Brook is moderate, with a few sections of steep hand-over-hand climbing near the summit. Fun, though. Leave plenty of time to have a leisurely lunch at the peak. 360 degree views of The Androscoggin River and the Whites to take in. Caribou Trail is seemingly easier elevation gain, but then again, we were coming down it.

Stopped at the Standard Gastropub in Bridgton on the way home. Perfect close to the perfect hike.

Great scenery. Fun to hike, crossing many times the Brooks. Trail marks could be restored.

The only thing HARD about this was that the trail is not marked. keep a eye out and the trail is pretty easy to follow. if you're not paying attention it would be easy to follow a path where the rain runoff goes. There are many downed trees across the trail, but not a big deal.
Absolutely fantastic 360° view at the top.
I clocked this at just over 6 miles.

There were definitely some steep sections of this trail, but the views were fantastic! Make sure when you enter the trail and you come to the Y intersection, go left. Thereafter, the trail will go into the woods towards the right. I did video the trail if anyone is interested. Recommended. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fzphka3XUo0&t=2s

We hiked up in the rain heading to the north first. The trail is up at a steady incline and then down with little to no level ground. I also found the trail to be a full 3 miles. We will be back to check out the views.

I hiked up the Mud brook trail to the summit of Caribou and returned using the Mud brook trail to the Caribou trail. I first hiked this trail 20 years ago, the trail was marked very clearly back then. Not as clearly marked today. The trail is well worn when you reach the summit you’ll see a few small cairns but you need to really look for them. The caribou trail is well worn but when get close to the waterfalls and big pool pay close attention the trail crosses over the brook at the top of the falls. There is a trail on the right before you cross heading down to the pool, if you’re not paying attention you’ll miss the trail crossing like i did and wander a round for a while looking for it. Overall a great hike the bugs were insane on the descent. The hike took me round trip 4 hours the guide book says 5 i was probably moving fast to get away from the bugs

3 months ago

Nice 2 hour hike with beautiful view of the Andro and Bethel area. Moderate difficulty and well marked.

being new hiker I thought the steepness of this trail was very challenging but so worth it at the top!!! well marked and easy to follow.

3 months ago

Make sure to go past the first view and follow the cairns up to the money shot. Spectacular view, easy hike up, and was able to run most of the way down. Marked very well and the man who maintains the trail does a great job. Very quiet and secluded.

Great trails. Went up Caribou, beside brook most of the way with a couple of nice waterfalls. On Top a total 360* view. Mud Brook going down is a bit steep when you Start . Moose sign all over the ridge. On top you do have to keep your eye on the trail over rock. Look for yellow arrows and cairns. Did This one with my daughter Abi. She loved it...

Amazing views at the top despite being a short hike! The trail was beautiful but steep the entire way.

It’s a lovely hike, but definitely challenging if you’re a casual hiker. The trail is narrow, steep in places with lots of rocks and roots. We got to the rock surface not far from the summit, having covered 5/6ths of the Mud Brook Trail, but chose to eat lunch and head back down. It took us almost 3 hours to get to that point, and we had read that markings toward the top/end of the trail (headed toward connection with Caribou Trail) were not great. Rather than wander in search, we headed back down, reaching the parking area in 2 hours 15 minutes. Saw only one other hiker (clearly experienced based on gear) who set a good pace. No trail markings, but we were mostly able to follow (strayed off twice - once up, once down - but recovered without wandering too far from trail). Bugs bad at summit, but no problem moving along the trail. Need good footing/balance crossing brook in several places, but lovely surroundings make the terrain and summit views worth the challenge.

Beautiful views from the top, a nice spot to lay in the sun on a blue-sky day. No snow, barely any mud, and a gorgeous stretch of forest near the tree line. My only complaint about this trail is that it is poorly marked at the base of the Caribou trail and at the summit. Otherwise, this is a very manageable hike for anyone in decent shape, and I would not rate it as hard.

The trail is fine except there are quite a few spots where I wasn’t sure where to go, it’s not marked very clearly. Even on the top, remember where you came up because it’s hard to tell where to go. VERY buggy and still muddy in some areas. Awesome view at the top.

The weather was absolutely perfect and lucked out that the bugs weren't bad! As stated in the review below mine the trail is not marked clearly...there were several times I was unsure if I was on the trail, but luckily I have good direction and my dog helped keep me on trail. This is definitely one of those trails you need to take note of your surroundings and be attentive as to not go off the trail. The information in the review below mine was a big help...you go over many streams and to my delight the top portion smelled like Christmas trees which was a pleasant surprise. Also, noticed some moose skat in several spots in the top portion (last mile close to the summit). It took approximately two hours from bog road/caribou mt trail to the summit and 1.25 hours on the way down. The views at the top were absolutely stunning, made for a lovely and rewarding picnic spot.

Great hike with beautiful views! Lots of beautiful waterfalls along the caribou trail!

Great hike that should be listed as moderate not easy. We started up the north side and lost the trail for about 20 minutes. The blue blazes need to be redone and a little closer together. Going down the south side was marked a little more clearly.

hiking
10 months ago

I hiked this on Thanksgiving Day, 2017. The trail was very well marked and conditions were excellent, hardly any loose rocks or roots. There were a few wet areas but they were easy enough to maneuver through and my feet stayed dry. Great view to the west via a side trail about 3/4 of the way up and a nice (partial) view at the summit.

11 months ago

great trail but not easy it is difficult. but the views are worth it. I highly recommend it.

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.

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