Stroudwater Trail, Portland
It's time to revisit the 100 trails we explored over the last two years. This time, I'll try to hike each trail in a new season, which will bring a different experience. Since we are lucky enough to have four seasons, this means we have a whole lot more to see. Here we go.
This 3.3 mile trail follows the banks of the Stroudwater river and includes packed-earth (or snow), boardwalks, bridges, wood and stone stairs. There are also benches and scenic outlooks along the way. The middle of this trail (near the Blueberry Road trailhead) is closed during winter months to protect Portland's deer habitats. This is the section that gets a bit more difficult, so I would only recommend it if you're up for hilly trails through dense forest. Eventually, it leads to Westbrook and Smiling Hill Farm.
From Portland, take outer Congress Street to River's Edge Drive, then take a quick right into the small parking lot. It feels like you are pulling into a private residence, but there are several parking spaces and you will see the Portland Trails sign. The address is 13 River's Edge Drive, for all of you who rely on GPS (no judgement, I'm right there with you). Once you reach the trail, take the long stone staircase and follow the winding path along the river.
To find our Seek'em, take this trail for about a mile. I did not have my GPS tracker during this trip, so my distance may be off. It may be way off, if I'm going to be honest. Still, I have some good, clear clues for you. Once you've reached a small bridge, look ahead to the winding, S shaped bridge.
Cross this bridge and just before the trail takes a sharp left, look for the short, broken tree stump on the right.
Now take a look inside...
Snug as a bug in a rug.
From here, continue walking or head back to the car. The trail goes on for quite a long while and it's usually pretty quiet here. If you'd like to see what the trail looks like in warmer months, here is my original post:
This is a great trail in all seasons. I come here when I am in need of a less busy trail. It consistently offers peace, beauty and solitude. Enjoy!