Upper Dunn Falls was pretty disappointing. I had seen really beautiful pictures of it, and yet when I visited, the falls was rather…meager? It probably doesn’t help that I had just seen Lower Dunn Falls, which I found to be really amazing. Because the rock narrows down the creek at Lower Dunn Falls, it “looks” like there was a lot of water flowing. On the other hand, the water fans out at Upper Dunn Falls, making it look like there wasn’t much water at all. In some pictures I’ve seen, there’s a lot more water, which definitely makes the falls look more powerful. When I visited, they looked weak.
- From the junction of ME-120 and ME-5 in Andover, head west on Newton Street (aka East B Hill Rd. or Upton Hill Rd.). It’s not very clearly marked.
- Head west for a little over 8 miles to a “parking area” on your right. It’s a clearing with about enough space for 3 cars, though the road is quiet enough that you could pull off on the side. There is a sign indicating the Appalachian Trail on both sides of the road, but again, they’re not obvious, so you’ll have to probably get out and look around.
- Cross the street and head about 200 feet east, where you’ll find the beginning of the trail. A sign should indicate that this is a portion of the Appalachian Trail. There will be while blazes indicating the trail.
- After about 150 feet downward, you’ll come to a fork in the trail. If you head right, you’ll continue on the Appalachian Trail. If you head left, you’ll see blue blazes and a sign indicating the Cascade Trail. When I was there, the tree with the sign on it had fallen down, so you’ll have to look carefully. Choose the second path. You have not crossed any brook yet.
- Follow the trail for about 1/2 of a mile, where you’ll clearly have to cross the brook. (There are moments before that where it will seem like you should cross the stream, but don’t. This is the first time where you will see the blue blazes on the other side of the stream.)
- After about another 1/4 of a mile, you cross a second brook.
- After a very short distance, you’ll come to another fork. You can either head uphill or veer to the right. Head uphill for Upper Dunn Falls (right for Lower Dunn Falls). After a short hike uphill, you have to cross the creek, which may be more difficult at high flow. When I visited, it was VERY easy. You will have to climb up a bank, which can be rather slippery, but it is not tall.
- Take a left and head town the trail with the sign indicating “Upper Falls” for a VERY short distance. You should reach the falls quickly, though you may have to figure out the best way to photograph/view the falls.
- To return to the car, you can either follow the Appalachian Trail or return the way you came. I took the Appalachian Trail, and REALLY wish I hadn’t! There are no great views and at points it’s a tedious uphill climb. If you return by the Cascade Trail, you might see something you missed, and it’s a much easier return.
Accessibility: 4/10 (moderate/strenuous)
Length of Hike: 2 miles round-trip
Where in the World is Upper Dunn Falls?