Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument is located in north central Maine, approximately a 2-hour drive west of Acadia National Park in Bar Harbor and 1-hour drive north of Bangor, Maine. Both areas are served by regional airports.
Traveling north or south on I-95, you can access all parts of the monument from exit 244 (Medway) and exit 264 (Sherman). Once you get off of I-95, you will get on Route 11 to access the monument. Or, coming south on I-95, you can also access the monument from exit 276 (Island Falls).
Route 11 in this area is also known as the Katahdin Woods and Waters Scenic Byway, designated by the state of Maine. It is the main access route to the monument.
From Exit 244, head west towards Medway and turn right onto Route 11 (also called Grindstone Road). If you cross the East Branch of the Penobscot River, you have missed the turn for Route 11. Follow Route 11 for approximately 20 miles and then turn left onto the Swift Brook Road. Use caution with this turn as sight distance is limited. The Swift Brook Road, which is a gravel road, will lead you to the Katahdin Loop Road in approximately 10 miles. Or, you can continue north on Route 11 to Patten and in approximately 15 miles turn left on Route 159 and the Grand Lake Road to access the North/Matagamon entrance.
From Exit 264, follow signs for Route 11. For the south entrance and the Katahdin Loop Road, turn left at the next intersection to stay on Route 11 south (also called Grindstone Road). In approximately 5 miles continue straight when the road curves left. This will lead you to the Swift Brook Road and access to the Katahdin Loop Road. At this point the paved road will become a gravel road. For the North/Matagamon entrance, follow Route 11 north towards Patten. In approximately 10 miles turn left onto Route 159 and the Grand Lake Road to access the North/Matagamon entrance.
From Exit 276, proceed west to Patten on Route 159 for approximately 8 miles. At the junction of Route 159 & Route 11, follow the above directions for access to either the Swift Brook Road and the Katahdin Loop Road or the Grand Lake Road to the North/Matagamon entrance.
From the intersection of Route 11 & Swift Brook Road, it is approximately 12 miles to the Katahdin Loop Road. Follow signs within the monument proper.
From the intersection of Route 11 & Route 159 in Patten, it is approximately 30 miles to the North/Matagamon Entrance. To access the monument, take the second left turn after you cross the East Branch of the Penobscot River near the Grand Lake Matagamon. This becomes the Messer Pond Road and dead-ends in approximately 4 miles.
There is no public transportation to the monument.
Traveling on Swift Brook Road
Please use caution when traveling on the Swift Brook Road, which is a gravel road. All gravel roads in the area are shared with logging and equipment trucks. It is important to drive slowly, keep to the right side of the road, and yield to oncoming trucks. If you are traveling north on Route 11, please use caution when making the left turn onto Swift Brook Road as there is limited sight distance.
Please be considerate of your speed as you pass the residential area near the intersection.
Last updated: August 26, 2020