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Sanford High School and YMCA Trails

Easy walking trails connect Sanford High School complex, the Sanford YMCA, Marginal Way, the Rail Trail, and William Oscar Emery Drive. No trail segment is longer than a half mile. Surfaces are paved or crushed gravel.
Trail Activity
4.5 miles, Network
Dirt/Forest Floor, Gravel/Crushed Stone, Pavement


From Gowen Park Gazebo parking area: a gravel trail leaves the rear of the parking area and continues across an open field to the woods. In 400 feet, the trail turns left and ascends a bluff. At the top, the trail descends steeply to cross an aluminum bridge and then climbs steeply to the top of a wooded ridge, called an esker. A side trail to the right descends to the water with views toward Number 1 Pond. The main trail continues to a fork. The right fork proceeds about 800 feet to the National Guard Armory, Sanford Dog Park, and William Oscar Emery Drive. The left fork goes about 600 feet to a gravel parking lot on the east side of Blouin Field, proceeds across the parking lot, enters the woods, and climbs 300 feet to Sanford High School.

From the picnic area on William Oscar Emery Drive northward: a paved footpath through the park changes to unpaved where the trail enters the woods. The trail becomes rough and skirts around a marshy area. At its end, turn right to William Oscar Emery Drive at the Dog Park, or turn left to Blouin Field and Sanford High School.

From the west end of Sanford High School Boulevard: a paved trail passes through a gate and in 300 feet, the trail forks. Straight ahead, the trail proceeds 800 feet to Marginal Way. Branching right, the trail continues 1,700 feet to Sanford YMCA and skate park.

From Marginal Way trailhead, heading south: the paved trail passes through a gate and proceeds about 800 feet to an intersection. Straight ahead, the trail ends in about 300 feet at Sanford High School Boulevard. Turning to the left, the trail continues 1,500 feet to Sanford YMCA and skate park, where there are many trail options.

From Marginal Way trailhead, heading north: the paved trail follows Marginal Way; after 0.25 miles and at a sharp bend, a short footpath leads to views of Stump Pond.

From Marginal Way and Prospect Street intersection: a gravel trail goes around a rail fence and 350 feet to the Sanford Rail Trail.

From Sanford YMCA: One option is a loop trail behind the YMCA, which can be found at the upper end of the parking lot, just outside the fenced perimeter of the play area. The trail goes around a wooded peninsula with views of Stump Pond. At a trail junction, the right branch proceeds across a stone bridge to Marginal Way. The left branch returns to the YMCA. Another option starts at the brick gazebo near the skate park, where a paved trail proceeds away from the YMCA about 1,500 feet to the trailhead at the east end of SHS Boulevard. Or follow the paved trail to the right 1,700 feet to an intersection with another paved trail.

From the east end of Sanford High School Boulevard, northward: a paved trail passes through a gate and in about 1,500 feet reaches the skate park and YMCA, where there are many trail options.

Other Information

These trails are very easy with one exception. Steep slopes down both banks are on the approach to an aluminum bridge a short distance from the Gowen Park parking area.

Trail Manager

Sanford Trails is an all-volunteer organization that promotes, builds, and manages trails in Sanford and Springvale. Learn more by visiting:

Sanford Trails

Sanford Trails
919 Main Street
Sanford, ME 04073
Phone: (207) 324-9135
View website

Nearby Events


Trail Tips

Leave What You Find
Leave the trail work to the pros: they will add or remove blazes, cairns (stone trail markers), structures, and trail improvements as deemed necessary.
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Trailhead Information

Trailhead parking can be found at the following areas:

  • Gowen Park Gazebo parking - about 300 feet from Main Street, about 0.75 miles north of the ME-109 and ME-11 intersection.
  • Sanford Springvale YMCA - entrance on River Street, about one mile north of the River Street and ME-11 intersection.
  • Sanford High School Boulevard - about 800 feet from SHS Boulevard entrance on Main Street, about one mile north of the ME-109 and ME-11 intersection. Parking is available at the Junior High School and High School along the Boulevard.
Click on a parking icon to get custom directions
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