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Steve Jermanok’s Active Travels: Rafting Maine’s Dead River with Northern Outdoors

Large snow accumulation this winter translates into a better than average volume of whitewater come spring thaw. This is only enhanced by May and June dam releases, where the fast moving current results in a rip-roaring, adrenalin-pumping ride. Look no further than the Dead River. It’s a long drive on logging roads to reach the Spencer Rips put-in, but once there, be prepared for a glorious run on the longest stretch of continuous whitewater in New England. The Dead churns along 16 miles of almost nonstop Class III and IV rapids. There are no bridges, roads, or other signs of civilization until the end, just an exhilarating romp through big water on rapids with names like Minefield, Humpty Dumpty, and Big Poplar Falls. Go with a reputable outfitter like Northern Outdoors, who have been introducing clientele to Maine whitewater since 1976.

Rafting Maine's Dead River with Northern Outdoors
Rafting Maine’s Dead River with Northern Outdoors

Scheduled dam releases are May 25, May 31, June 1, June 7, and June 8. Cost for the full-day adventure ranges from $89-$109 per person, including lunch and a guide, with a minimum age requirement of 15 years old. 



steve  Steve Jermanok As a columnist for National Geographic Adventure, adventure travel expert at Budget Travel, and regular contributor on outdoor recreation for Outside, Men’s Journal, Health, and Sierra, Steve Jermanok has written more than 1,000 articles on the outdoors.He’s also authored or co-authored 11 books, including Outside Magazine’s Adventure Guide to New England and Men’s Journal’s The Great Life. His latest book is Go Now! Put Your Life on Pause and See the World. He’s currently an adventure travel expert at Away.com and blogs daily at  Active Travels.

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