Home Traveling Maine Sarampus Falls in Maine – Rest Area Worth a Stop

Sarampus Falls in Maine – Rest Area Worth a Stop

by Derrick Grant
Sarampus Falls sign

Near the midpoint of the High Peaks Scenic Byway (HPSB) in Maine, there’s a little-known rest area that we as locals never fail to pull over and enjoy—a gem of a view and good spot to take a summertime dip called Sarampus Falls.

Maine State Route 27 is well known to Mainers as a road that connects “outsiders” to many of the towns in the western part of the state, most famously Kingfield—the gateway to Sugarloaf USA. North of there, Route 27 is also called the HPSB. It stretches between Kingfield to the south and the Coburn Gore border crossing (into Canada) to the north.

This route is simply fantastic. Skiers, hikers, leaf-peepers, almost everyone finds something to love about the Byway somewhere along its 47 miles.

The photos on this page give you a taste of the scenery there, but it’s one of those things you have to see in person to really appreciate. Like a faded favorite shirt, the Falls are a humble yet powerful source of quiet comfort.

Sarampus Falls Brief History

Signs posted at the rest stop give a brief overview of the history of the area, a history rich in logging.

signs displaying the history of the area
My wife reading the history of the area on our stop back from Montreal.

One sign read:

In the early 1800s, as the timber near existing settlements and along major rivers was depleted, logging operators were forced to look for marketable trees in more remote regions. It was along this lumbering “frontier” that temporary logging camps came into existence. Shelters for men and their oxen or hoses were made from spruce logs cut and assembled on the site. Camps were the loggers’ home for as much as half the year from late fall through “ice out.”

Sarampus Falls Sign

This was the difficult work performed in the area of Sarampus Falls.

How To Get There

From the South—Starting at the village in Eustis known as Stratton, drive north on 27, thirteen miles. Now, once you’ve spotted the Alder Stream Township sign, go two more miles and the Sarampus Falls rest area will be on your right.

From the North—Traveling southeast on Route 27, pass through Chain of Ponds and go another 1.4 miles, looking for the rest area sign. Sarampus Falls will be on your left.

If you want to stay in the immediate area of Sarampus Falls, your best bet is camping at Natanis Point Campground. It’s right on the water. Quiet and picturesque.

What To Do There

It depends on your inclination. The Falls aren’t so much a spectacular destination as a diversion to take one’s mind off a long drive—a true rest stop. But one that, to us, has always held the spirit of the state of Maine in its stands of pine and fir, the trickle and rush of the falling water on the far side of the pool, the open sky that’s temperamental as could be—the whole kit and caboodle.

For me, my wife and I typically just stop there on our way back/to Montreal, Quebec. It’s the perfect stop before or after the border checkpoint with Canada. It’s quiet, peaceful, there are picnic tables, and best of all – a restroom.

Sarampus Falls picnic table
The covered picnic table makes a great place to stop and rest, even in rainy weather.

One winter, during a drive from a funeral in Vermont right to one in Sherbrooke, Montreal, my nephew and I happened to have our snowshoes in the truck. We had a little time to spare, so we stopped at Sarampus just to walk across the frozen pool and back to see what we could see.

The sun was out and the air was snappy and we ‘shoed in silence, the only sound the crunch of the crust beneath us. At the frozen falls, we sipped from our water bottles, enjoying the quiet power of nature. Our shared grief was understood, as was the relief the exercise was giving us.

Before we started back, I had to bend down to adjust my bindings. My nephew whispered fiercely to get my attention. I stood up quickly, following his pointing finger, but only saw a lump of snow fall from a pine branch to the drift below. He told me he’d seen not one but two snowy owls in that same branch, that had flown away when he’d tried to point them out.

My nephew has never been known to lie, but even if he was pulling my leg that time, a good way to describe Sarampus Falls is that it’s a place that still retains the magic of Maine.


It’s the little things you remember. Sarampus Falls is that quiet, unassuming friend who never takes center stage but is the one you’re reminded of and want to call, years later. Just remember—Route 27, north of Stratton.

Give a comment if you’ve been there too!

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