Monday, November 5, 2012 by Northern Outdoors Trip Reviews

Dear Russell & Fellow Staff..we had a blast on this trip.

Everything was above our expectations from the condo to the people to the rafting. We totally enjoyed ourselves and are already trying to plan a trip for next year. We all agreed that everyone was just so nice and energetic and we couldn't believe how organized you had everything. Great Job Northern Outdoors.

I bought one of your moose stickers and put it on my Xterra to help advertise a little. Also, I haven't stopped raving about your place since we came back. I work in a super busy Diner in town that has been there 58 years. It's the kind of place where if you want to know anything about anything you come to Zip's. So I am spreading the word to all of my customers that it is totally worth the fivehour ride. Oh yeah, we tried the "Deer in the head lights" beer as well...pretty tastey!!!

Thank you all again for making our vacation Excellent!!!

Jaime S
Danielson, Connecticut

Rating: 5 *****

New England Whitewater Rafting


Epic Day on the Kennenbec

Monday, August 27, 2012 by Northern Outdoors Trip Reviews

This was one of the best getaways ever!! Our guide, David Parker, was awesome. We had so much fun with him. He was funny, entertaining, knowledgable and made sure we had a great time and were safe doing it. We would definitely raft again with him. Loved the brewery and night entertainment. We stayed in a tent and really enjoyed that experience.

Thanks again for a great vacation.

Melissa D
Norton, Massachusetts

Rating: 5 *****

Maine Rafting Getaway

New England Adventure Resort

Untamed New England Adventure Race

Wednesday, July 4, 2012 by Northern Outdoors Trip Reviews

Mark Montague here (Grant's fill in and one who manned Finish line till 3AM both nights). Your resort provided one of the best travel experiences I have had in 20+ yrs. Every member of your staff bent over backwards to make our stay there as easy and enjoyable as possible. From the front desk Admin staff to the Food/Restaurant Staff to the Servers and Maid staff, they were all top notch. I honestly could not punch a hole in any aspect of your business. God has blessed you and Northern Outdoors for always giving your guests the best experience possible.

I only look fwd to coming back and actually enjoying some of the other amenities like Whitewater Rafting and ATV riding instead of all the hard work we did hiking and biking in the Mtns last week. Keep up the great work and you will continue to be Maine's Premiere Resort for vacations!

Mark M
Portsmouth, VA

Rating: 5 *****

Untamed New England Adventure Race

Untamed New England at Northern Outdoors

Video of the Week: Maine Whitewater Rafting on the Class V Penobscot River

Friday, July 29, 2011 by Northern Outdoors Staff

When it comes to iconic scenery blended with the adventure of whitewater rafting, New England has a special place. It's called the Penobscot River and in particular it's a spot named Nesowadnehunk Falls and Nesowadnehunk Stream.  This week, our Maine rafting video is all about being on the water and in the water while rafting this section of the Penobscot River.

Nesowadnehhunk Falls, a.k.a. The Falls, is a rapid of pure heart-pumping enjoyment.  It's rapids like this that give Maine whitewater rafting such a great reputation.  As you approach The Falls, the water is calm and as you leave The Falls the water is calm, but a natural ledge lies across the length of the river in between these calm sections creating a fantastically fun 12-foot drop.  Your guide can take you surfing in this drop as well as run The Falls over and over and over again.  

Nesowadnehunk Stream, a.k.a. The Natural Water Slide, is just cool...literally.  All ya do is sit down, lie back and enjoy the ride into a refreshing pool of natural spring water.  It's whitewater rafting, New England style.

Enjoy our Maine whitewater rafting video and better yet come enjoy some Penobscot River rafting with us too!

Maine Adventure Vacations in the Katahdin Region

Video of the Week: Maine Whitewater Rafting on the Kennebec River June 14th

Thursday, June 16, 2011 by Northern Outdoors Staff

Our Kennebec River rafting trip is Mother Nature's perfect roller coaster ride.  This Maine whitewater rafting trip starts with a brief gathering in the morning at The Forks Resort Center then its off to the river to experience rapids such as Big Mama, Lower Alleyway and Magic Falls.  If water levels allow, your guide will stop at a place called Dead Stream Falls where you can stand right underneath a waterfall! 

Check out this Kennebec River rafting video of the week to see some of the action!

Whitewater Rafting New England
Maine Adventure Vacations

Maine Adventure Weddings: Featured on Love and Lobster

Thursday, June 16, 2011 by Northern Outdoors Staff

Maine Adventure WeddingsNorthern Outdoors is the perfect destination for adventure weddings, just ask our friends at Love & Lobster who recently interviewed us for their blog titled Rustic Weddings: Northern Outdoors.  Love & Lobster assists creative couples seeking clever online inspiration in planning their wedding along New England’s beautiful coastline.  The site provides insider tips, interviews with local venues and vendors, and photographic eye candy. 

Here's a bit from the Love & Lobster interview regarding adventure weddings at Northern Outdoors:

"If the words “outdoor” or “adventure” describe your wedding plans, there’s a gem of a venue tucked in Maine’s upper reaches that’s well worth the drive.

Northern Outdoors boasts an authentic Maine lodge and scenic location in The Forks, a little town perched at the convergence of the Dead and Kennebec rivers, famous among white-water rafting enthusiasts for their thrilling rapids. We checked in with Stephanie Koetzle, a spokesperson for Northern Outdoors, to learn more about how they blend weddings with the wilderness."

To view photos and read the entire article on adventure weddings click here.
At Northern Outdoors, we love adventure and providing an outdoor destination for folks to create lasting memories. Whether it's adventure weddings or classic New England vacations, we've got ya covered!

Maine Adventure Vacations
Love & Lobster

Video of the Week: Maine Whitewater Rafting on the Penobscot River June 6th

Monday, June 6, 2011 by Northern Outdoors Staff

The most iconic place to experience Maine whitewater rafting is on the mighty Penobscot River.  Mount Katahdin, Maine's highest mountain, stands as the backdrop as you navigate through some of the most technical rapids in the east.  

Check out this video of the week of Maine whitewater rafting on the Penobscot River.  It was awesome high water! You'll find a view from inside the raft as paddlers work together to make it through Class IV and V rapids.

Note the incredible blue skies, sunshine and big smiles that made for the perfect Maine whitewater rafting trip!

Maine Adventure Vacations
Whitewater Rafting New England

Maine Whitewater Rafting: Yankee Magazine Recommends Northern Outdoors

Friday, May 13, 2011 by Northern Outdoors Staff
Yankee Magazine Recommends Northern Outdoors

We're thrilled! Yankee Magazine rates Penobscot River Rafting one of Maine's Best Adventures in 2011 and recommends Northern Outdoors. 

Here's what Yankee has to say about Maine whitewater rafting on the Penobscot River:

Penobscot River
Moments after boarding your raft and going over your first major rapid, dubbed "Exterminator," you immediately realize that this 14-mile stretch of the Penobscot is a serious joyride that will have you shrieking with abandonment. Go with a reputable outfitter such as Northern Outdoors, which ran its first trip down the Penobscot in 1976. 1771 U.S. Route 201. 800-765-7238, 207-663-4466;

Link to Yankee Magazine Listing
New England Vacations
Penobscot River Rafting with Northern Outdoors
(We run a classic, top-to-bottom river trip on the Penobscot - Upper Penobscot, lunch riverside, then Lower Penobscot. We don't run the Lower first, then drive back up for the Upper. We think our trip makes for a better, uninterrupted river experience that way.)

Maine Adventure Vacations: Ski and Raft Package...yep that's right!

Friday, April 29, 2011 by Northern Outdoors Staff
Spring Dead River Rafting with Northern Outdoors Calling all adventure junkies!  At Northern Outdoors, we're gearing up for rafting while still enjoying great spring skiing conditions at Sugarloaf USA.  So we thought, let's put together a Ski/Ride N Raft Package during the first two weekends of May.  Big water, plenty of mountain snow, great weather - so why not? 

Sugarloaf USA has the most spring skiing in the east and Northern Outdoors offers the best big water Kennebec River Rafting and Dead River Rafting trips in New England.  With only about an hour of drive time between the two resorts, we think this package ranks high on the scale of cool Maine Adventure Vacations.

Suggested Maine whitewater rafting and Sugarloaf skiing/riding weekend:

Friday:  Check-in at Northern Outdoors, enjoy the lodge amenities and Maine brewery
Saturday: Dead River Rafting followed by a night of live music
Sunday: Check out and head to Sugarloaf USA for a day on the slopes
Ski or Ride Saturday at Sugarloaf
Saturday night: Check in at Northern Outdoors, enjoy the Kennebec River Brewery and live music
Sunday: Go rafting on the Kennebec River

Sugarloaf Ski Resort, MaineThe Ski/Ride N Raft Package will be offered the weekends of May 7-8 and May 14-15.  Oh, and it's only $99! 
Note: Dead River Rafting is only available on Saturday May 7th or Saturday May 14th. Kennebec River Rafting trips are available on Sunday May 8th,  Saturday, May 13th, and Sunday May 14th.
Kennebec River Rafting
Dead River Rafting
Sugarloaf USA

It's a Party: Get Connected with New England Vacations and Adventure Experiences

Monday, March 14, 2011 by Northern Outdoors Staff
Yallaboard Expo Party - Friday, March 18, 2011Northern Outdoors is spreading the word about this new adventure expo and party with our friends at Amesbury Sports Park and Yallaboard.

Date: Friday, March 18th,
Time: 6:00pm-11:00pm
Where: Amesbury Sports Park
What:  Adventure Expo and Party

Featured Events:
Snow tubing, Freestyle Ski & Snowboard Rail Jam Competition, Extreme Challenge Course Race, Intro to New England's best adventures with Eastern Mountain Sports Schools, Northern Outdoors, Muddy Paw Sled Dog Kennel, Parafly Paragliding, and High 5 Ballooning.

Games, BBQ, Bonfire, Live Music & Dancing, and Live DJ Broadcast by WXGR 101.5FM

It'll be a great party and a chance to learn more about Maine adventure vacations

Check it out and hope to see you there!

Castlebay Music for Maine Family Adventures

Friday, December 24, 2010 by Northern Outdoors Staff
Julia Lane and Fred Gosbee of CastlebayMaine’s music derives from several places.  Arcadian French, Scottish and English influences have spread over the Maritimes islands, across the farm lands and through the mountains.  Sea shanties and Celtic reels, folks songs and modern arrangements of old classics are all part of Maine’s musical history.

Julie Lane and Fred Gosbee of Castlebay Music offer up fantastic renditions of traditional music.  Specializing in Celtic harp, guitar, fiddle and tin whistle, this duo has toured New England and the rest of the Eastern United States, as well as though Ireland, England and Scotland playing at festivals and arts centers.  Their vocals are clear and charming and to see them play live is a real treat.

Whether flying solo on the way to Maine rafting or Maine snowmobile adventures or heading north for Maine family vacations, for those interested in getting a taste of Maine music on their Maine adventure vacations, checking to see where Castlebay is playing is always a great idea.  Visitors lucky enough to be in the Kennebec Valley region on January 9, 2010, can find Castlebay playing an afternoon concert in Augusta. 

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New England Vacations Offer Year Round Adventure For Everyone

Monday, November 1, 2010 by Northern Outdoors Staff
Maine Snowmobile AdventuresUnlike some areas of the world where the word vacation is attached to a specific time of year, New England is a region of adventures for all seasons. 

Here in Maine, winter means alpine, nordic and back country skiing and snowboarding, snowshoeing, dog sledding, ski jouring, and of course riding on Maine snowmobile trails.  It's a season of first tracks, swishing edges, kicked-up sprays of snow and hot chocolate in front of fireplaces.

Maine RaftingSpring offers bright sunny days filled with the sound of rushing water for Maine whitewater rafting, the first festivals of the year, hiking, triathlons and bird watching.  Waterfalls begin to flow free with all the spring runnoff.  This is when everyone breaks out the bicycles and motorcycles for fun in the early sun.

Summer is getting out from coast to mountains, exploring lakes and rivers through kayaking, canoeing, fishing, and Kennebec River rafting, hiking long trails, boating on the lakes and ocean, beach combing, cycling, berry picking, geocaching, golfing and ATVing.  Don't forget the moose spotting!  Summer in Maine is fun in endless ways.

Fall Foliage in MaineCome fall, leaf looking is in season, whether from horseback or from a raft, along a lonely mountain trail or a winding back road.  Dead River Rafting comes to a close with what are usually the biggest releases of the season, and fairs are everywhere this time of year — especially popular are the ones offering up the large bounty of Maine's harvest. 

New England vacations have something for everyone all year round.  It's one more thing to love about living here.

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Maine Brewer's Festival Brings a Little Bit of The Forks to Portland

Thursday, October 28, 2010 by Northern Outdoors Staff
Maine Brewers FestivalOn November 5th and 6th,2010, the 17th Annual Maine Brewer's Festival will be taking place in Portland, Maine.  New England vacations should always involve a taste of local goods — in this case literally, with samplings of Maine beers.  Brewers from all over the state will be coming to town with all their best beverages.  We hope to get a lot of visitors from out of state, as well as area locals, to stop by and taste some of our fabulous Kennebec River Brewery beer. 

We're looking forward to bringing The Forks' best beer to a lot of people at this festival, and showing the uninitiated that we offer more than just great Maine whitewater rafting and Maine snowmobile adventures.  Our little brewery, located downstairs from the Kennebec River Pub at Northern Outdoors Resort,  puts out an awesome variety of high-quality brews, from Big Mama Blueberry to Deer-in-the-Head Lite

(Check out the Learn Your Beer Website for a schedule and directions to the Maine Brewers Festival.)

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New England Vacations Should Always Be Festive

Thursday, October 14, 2010 by Northern Outdoors Staff
Waterville Harvest Fest Oct 16 -17, 2010When Kennebec River rafting and Dead River rafting wrap up for the season, there are still lots of things to do across the gorgeous state of Maine.  Winter, of course, brings snow to bliss out skiers, snowmobilers, and snowshoers, but the last months of fall offer lots of great events to occupy the time until the whitestuff arrives in force.  Festivals are everywhere, featuring local Maine foods, goods and entertainment.

This weekend, October 16-17, 2010, the 8th Annual Harvest Fest takes place in Waterville.  Judging by the list of scheduled events, it's going to be a fun weekend.  This is an event worth checking out for anyone in the area this weekend.


  • Educational workshops and activities in Castonguay Square (rain location: Barrels Community Market), including apple tasting, spinning, and more
  • Downtown Scavenger Hunt! Participants will receive a free, reusable tote bag from Sustain Mid-Maine Coalition, a special snack from Barrels Community Market, and some complimentary tickets for Sunday's Harvest Fest activities. Participants will also be entered into a drawing for a $100 Harvest Basket from Barrels.
  • Retail sales throughout Downtown
  • Harvest themed restaurant specials featuring local foods and beverages
  • Contra Dance and Beer Tent in Castonguay Square! Featuring Caller John McIntyre and The Gawlers!

  • Pumpkin carving
  • Hay rides
  • Scarecrow building
  • Pumpkin bowling
  • Pony rides
  • Candy apple making
  • Food vendors
  • Apple Pie & Dessert Contest

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Fall Foliage Adds Pop to New England Vacations

Friday, October 1, 2010 by Northern Outdoors Staff
Maine Back Road, September 2010, The Forks, MaineWhether visitors are headed to Maine for the last release of the season for Dead River Rafting, to play at Maine ATV Trails and resort adventures or to try their feet at Hut to Hut hiking trips, fall is the time to really savor being here.

From the interstate to two lane black top to the gravel backroads, seemingly endless waves of color cover the landscape.

Lakes and rivers reflect the trees, sometimes making it hard to know where land begins and water ends.  Kennebec River rafting through the Kennebec River Gorge this time of year is nothing short of spectacular.  Even just sitting on the porch of a rental cabin, sipping a hot drink and listening to the breeze in the leaves and watching them fall is a special time. 

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Maine Adventure Vacations Can Include a Visit to Kennebec River Brewery

Wednesday, September 22, 2010 by Northern Outdoors Staff
Kennebec River Brewery Beer SamplerThe Kennebec River Brewery is a welcome and tastely surprise for those visiting The Forks, Maine for the first time for Maine whitewater rafting.  Located downstairs at Northern Outdoors Resort, KRB serves up unique brews all year round, from Deer-In-The-Head Lite and Big Mama Blueberry Ale to the seasonal favorite Oktoberfest. 

On tap at the bar upstairs in the Kennebec River Pub are all the lastest offerings.  The sampler tray lets guests try 6 different beers in smaller glasses, making it easier (or harder if you like them all) to choose a favorite.  Any of the beer on tap can find its way home with visitors in our great new gowlers.  Six packs of Sled Head Red or Kennebec River IPA are often available to take home as well.

Many of Northern Outdoors cabins and campsites are within easy walking distance, so everyone in the group can enjoy a fun night out at the Kennebec River Pub without having to worry about a designated driver.  The perfect end to a great day of whitewater rafting New England style!

And for those who can't get to The Forks this weekend, The Kennebec River Brewery will be taking part in the Maine Lakes Brew Fest at Sebago Point on Saturday September 25, 2010 from 11am-5pm.  Kennebec River Brewery Beer is also available at a growing number of locations all over Maine and Massachsetts for those fans who can now find their favorite beer closer to home.

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New England Vacations A Different Kind of Adventure in Fall Foliage Season

Tuesday, September 21, 2010 by Northern Outdoors Staff
Maine Fall Foliage - PLC_PhotoSometimes when people think of Maine adventure vacations, they think big and wild — huge whitewater, rocky hiking trails, skiing above treeline at Sugarloaf — but not every adventure has to be hardcore and not every adventurer has to be a rugged outdoor adrenaline fiend.

For those who live where the leaves do not change and who have never experienced the thrilling beauty of a crisp fall morning, we offer the simple joy of a fall foliage vacation.   There is nothing like waking and walking outside with a hot cup of coffee to watch mist roll through brilliantly colored maples and birch, hear loons cry on the lake below and just sigh in bliss.  A walk along the Kennebec River on the Old Canada Road trail, a site-seeing drive along Route 201 to Jackman, a geo-caching scavenger hunt among the fallen leaves — all of these are the mellower side of adventuring in Maine.

The other options also exist — Maine whitewater rafting through a fall foliage shrouded gorge - ATV rides through fallen leaves, a climb to the peak of a mountain — for those who want high adventure, but they are not required for a great fall adventure in Maine.

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Dead River Rafting - New England Whitewater Rafting 2010

Thursday, September 16, 2010 by Northern Outdoors Staff
Big Water on the Dead River MaineIt's fall in The Forks, Maine and that means the last weekends of Dead River Rafting are upon us.  Through flickers of fall color, the Dead River is a ribbon of adventure just waiting to be explored.  With 16 miles of nearly-continuous whitewater, the Dead River is a one of a kind experience among the options for whitewater rafting New England style.

September 18th marks the second to last release on the Dead River this season, followed by the final release on October 2nd.  The 18th lets everyone try the Dead in Diable Sport rafts with a release rate of 3500 CFS (Cubic Feet Per Second).

The last release of the season is wide-open at 6000 CFS - big water, big water, big water!  This is the weekend eveyone has been waiting for - brilliant leaves, October Fest at the resort, and some of the best rafting of the year.  Maine adventure vacations should include more fun than a visitor can stand and the Dead River is Maine whitewater rafting at its finest.  We're looking forward to everyone coming out to play!

New England Vacations - Fall Foliage In Maine

Monday, September 13, 2010 by Northern Outdoors Staff
Martin Pond at Northern Outdoors Resort - Fall FoliageYankee Magazine is a great source of in formation about what is going on in New England, and, smart folks that they are, they have created a website called Yankee Foliage.  Yes indeed, a website dedicated to fall adventures in New England. 

From fall foliage maps to photo contests to driving tour recommendations, this website is a great resource for anyone planning New England vacations during leaf season.  Lucky us!  Route 201 in Maine, the road that passes by the front door of our Maine Adventure Resort is featured in the driving list.  Not that we're surprised...

We already know Route 201, (aka The Old Canada Road National Scenic Byway) is stunningly beautiful in any season, and now lots more people are going to know it too.  So we're working hard to get ready for anyone who wants to stop by.  The Kennebec River Pub and Brewery are ready for visitors to fuel up.  The hot tub is warmed to perfection to sooth neck muscles strained by took much head twisting to see all the sites.  The beds in the cabins are made and ready for a perfect night's sleep. 

We recommend exploring the Yankee Foliage website and getting some great ideas for Maine Adventures Vacations in particular!

Maine Gets Ready For Fall Visitors on Maine Adventure Vacations

Thursday, September 2, 2010 by Northern Outdoors Staff
Fall Kennebec River Rafting in MaineBring in the firewood and stock up on the hot chocolate!  Maine is getting ready for fall visitors.   Cool mornings and crisp evenings make for good snuggling up to the fire with a cup of hot joe in hand.

Days, however, are still warm and bright, perfect for playing in the great outdoors under a  canopy of brilliant fall leaves.  Autumn in New England like nowhere else on earth.  From the lakes region to the coast, Maine offers some of the most beautiful and least known leaf-looking adventures in the region. 

Take a Kennebec River rafting trip through the unique Kennebec River Gorge.  Hike to Moxie Falls, one of the tallest waterfalls in New England.  Make a drive to from The Forks to Jackman on The Old Canada Road, National Scenic Byway, to admire the stunning views of Attean Lake.  Return to a cabin in the Maine woods and a roaring fireplace and steaming hottub at the lodge.  Fall in Maine is a great escape and we're ready to welcome all adventurerers!