Franklin Falls

4.75 out of 5
View Topo Map


↑ 800 ft
↓ 700 ft
elevation (ft)

Trail Description
About this trail
Franklin Falls or 'The Dam' is a NEMBA maintained trail which provides little in the way of technical riding, but has a lot of great, fast, winding single track. Here you'll find quick, short, heart pounding climbs, short downhill sections, roots (not too bad), one very small plank crossing a river (on Whaleback), and a few log obstacles (quite small). There are about ten single trails, but you can mix it up however you like.

My favorite route is starting from the parking lot, take the gravel road through the chain link fence, which will meet up with another gravel road, which you'll follow. THAT will merge with another road, but keep on heading forward, turn right on the next small path, and immediately on your right will be the beginning of Whaleback Trail. Whaleback will criss-cross that small path a few times, but keep going.

Eventually, you will come out on a road that doesn't look well used, and up the hill immediately in front of you begins Middle Trail, which is marked in orange. From here, I like to go to Chicken Ravine, and to do that take the first right (marked with orange), and continue on. Pass the entrance to Bee Trail, and the next one on your left is Chicken Ravine. This is by far my most favorite trail. You can fly down the middle, but where's the fun in that? On either side of the ravine, you'll notice paths of other bikers going up and down the walls of the gully. Do it. At the bottom, you'll come out on the beltline road/service road. Take a left, skip the first trail on your right (marked in red) and take the next trail on your right, which is the Lost Wall Trail. That will take you to the yellow-marked Heritage Trail, which will come out back on the service road. Take a right, and a little ways up on the left continues the Heritage Trail. I usually just take heritage back to the middle trail, and from there I hit Moose Gully back to the gravel road, and then back to the parking lot. Takes me about an hour, and my friend is usually done running by then. I am not the best direction-giver, but here is the link to the map.

Franklin Falls is an excellent place to bike. The ground here soaks up water like nothing else, and I've yet to see a puddle (except on the beltline/service road, near the river when stuff likes to flood during the spring), and attendance is really low, yet the trail seems to be very consistently maintained. One warning: if you're like me and want to ride out onto the dam, at the very end, past the gazebo, where the grassy land ends in something of a point next to the fence, there is an underground yellowjacket nest (as of April 12, 2010). Just be careful.

added by _konecoBunny Hop April 14, 2010
Trail Features
Trail features
  • Lift Service
  • Drinking Water
  •   Night Riding
  • Pump Track
  • Restrooms
  • Winter Fat Biking
Directions to Trailhead
Get Directions
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Trail Q&A
Rider Questions


Q: I will be riding this trail tomorrow. It seems like a lot of fun. -JoePalumbo221

A: Chicken Ravine is a must

Guest answered on April 3, 2016. Did you find this helpful? Yes | No


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Local Info & Nearby Trails
Trail Check-ins
Trail Check-ins
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Recent Trail Check-ins     (21 total check-ins)
  Rigormortus   on May 14, 2016
  Scastronh   on Apr 16, 2016
  Dirtroadreno   on Feb 29, 2016
  Obakst   on Oct 10, 2015
  maineskiaddict   on Sep 20, 2015
Photo & Video Gallery (90)
Trail Photos & Videos (90)
Reviews (16)

July 20, 2016
Review: I come up to newfound lake every year for vaca. This is my second visit. I'm surprised how hard it is to find good mtn biking around here! Franklin is solid.. Lots of good trails with nothing too crazy. Much more rocky and rooted than I'm used to in PA but that makes things fun. There's never many people here during the weekdays.

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Granny Gear

June 28, 2015
Review: The Core of Engineers knows how to host MTB trails, like one of our fave systems -Strom Thurmond in SC they did a good overall job. (Does have some unchecked erosion on roads that need attention aka waterbars.) Don't bother with Salmon Brook trail unless you seriously LOVE tight bouldery slick switchbacks. Otherwise all other trails are great - lots of flow and steeps to keep your heart pumping and designed to be fun in both directions. Facilities are clean, well kept and appreciated.

Similar Trail: Pine Hill Park, Rutland, VT

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May 26, 2015
Review: Excellent faster flowy smoother trails.. Easily navigated with some loose spots on a few trails.. Would happily go there again..

Similar Trail: Russell Mill, Chelmsford MA

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Granny Gear

April 26, 2015
sbbikeit26 Granny Gear  
Review: There is a nice mix of trails at the Dam. Really has something for every ability level. Trails begin as fire access roads and branch off into the woods from there. You can choose to stay on flat and windy or challenge yourself with steep and technical. Advanced riders make sure to seek out the Mighty Chicken and Ravine.

Similar Trail: Rambling Vewe Farm

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Bunny Hop

August 3, 2014
Review: Very good don't follow this guys direction they are all screwed up just look up franklin falls and you will find where to go. CHICKEN RAVIEN best trail ever very fun there are so many trails but really don't follow this guys directions me and my dad spent the hole morning trying to find out where to go!

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Bunny Hop

August 31, 2015
Guest Bunny Hop  
Review: I love single track trails... I'm 63 year old female... went with my 67 year old male friend -- we both get very psyched doing single track trails, but we both got scared Chicken Ravine -- not going down the middle but traversing back and forth. Midway I got off from one of them on the right side, and took a slight right turn to get back onto the middle ravine... my front tire hit a smooth moist large flat rock just hidden under the dirt and bam! down I went... bike fell to the right and I flew off the bike to the left, purposely. I'm fine but honestly I'm done with that trail. I need to face facts... I don't want any broken bones -- luckily I'm fine today... have sore shoulders from the fall... lower back... and I play a lot of tennis -- so no more crazy stuff like this for me. Will stick to trails such as Pine Snake... Ravine Trail is good too, but I did not go down the steep hill... after my fall, I was a little "chicken..." get it?

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July 12, 2014
akrantz Trailblazer  
Review: Very cool network of trails. The rocks and roots are tough but the real challenge here is being able to lay off the brakes. These are quick trails and there are some cool drops.

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June 25, 2014
schwei Gnarly  
Review: Although there is not a ton of trail here, I did think this place was pretty enjoyable! NEMBA did a great job with the trails and there is enough there to put together a nice hour or so ride. Mighty Chicken was definitely a standout and was worth looping around a couple of times to hit it again! It won't be an endurance ride, but the trails are great and you'll enjoy it!

Similar Trail: Lowell Dracut Tyngsboro Forest

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October 13, 2013
ediblefrog Gnarly  
Review: Lots of great trails here. Chicken Ravine was a blast! Lots to do here a little something for everyone.

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June 29, 2013
Review: I took the 45 minute ride north to try this place out on a drizzly wet day after reading about how well this place drains and is open year round even thru mud season. I was not disappointed, the trails were amazingly firm and unaffected by any rain. I did however call shinanigans when I read NO roots or rocks. In New Hampshire that is not possible. The roots are so few and small they seem non existent. This place is fast and wicked flowy, a lot of rolling can be done. There truly isn't anywhere else like this in NH.

I followed the first half of the loop mentioned in the description but took a right up the hill to Rusty Bucket after the most awesome and gnarly Mighty Chicken!! I climbed the hill and rode Rusty Bucket, Snake Pine, Moose Gully, Salmon Trail, Sniper, and a few others. They were all great!

The trails are tight, and twisty with lots of flow and very compact. The trail builders have made very good use of the area and terrain. There are plenty of steep descents followed up with a steep climb making most trails flow evenly in both directions. You could spend a better part of a day and cover all the trails, then spend the rest of the day putting together repeat loops that all incorporate Mighty Chicken!!!

It is mentioned that there is not much in the way of technical stuff here. There are lots of jumps, drops, berms and features to play on scattered thru ought. There is also Salmon Trail. Rocks, roots, tight, steep, switchbacks blanketed in small viney roots and rock gardens galore! This however is like the black sheep of the system as tech is not what this system is about. This trail system is all about speed and flow...

A hardtail would be a very good choice for this place.

Thank you very much NEMBA for this awesome trail system, it's pure artwork!

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October 4, 2012
Review: Alas the trail maps given on this site do not work here is working one This place is sick, I love riding here!

Similar Trail: Horse Hill

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Franklin Falls MTB Trail 4.75 out of 5 based on 16 ratings. 16 user reviews.
Trail Conditions
Trail Conditions          < / > embed