Second Falls (Serpentine River)

Waterfall Detail: Second Falls is located 16.4 km up the 11 Mile Brook Road. Take Route 385 from Plaster Rock heading towards the small communities as Oxbow, Riley Brook and Nictau. Continue on past Nictau towards Mount Carlton Provincial Park crossing the Tobique River. The 11 Mile Brook Road is on the right hand side and is well marked. The road is well maintained by the Fraser Company and there are several locations along the route to stop and enjoy the Serpentine River snake its way through the deep valley but park well of the road as there is plenty of logging truck traffic. The mountains in this part of the province are the highest and largest. The waterfalls are more of a cascade on a sharp left hand turn on the Serpentine River. W. F. Ganong, the renowned new brunswick explorer documented and photographed the area during his numerous travels to the backcountry of New Brunswick in the 1800’s.

Visit Detail: Found out about these falls from Bill Miller who lives in Nictau, New Brunswick. For those not acquainted with Nectau it is the last community on the highway leading to Mount Carleton Park and Bills farm is the second to last homestead. Bill’s family is famous for the Miller Canoe and continues the tradition of building this renowned canoe. Bill and Ivan Hicks are instrumental in establishing the Fiddlers on the Tobique, an annual celebration of traditional music, canoeing and the Tobique River.

I stopped in to visit Bill on my way to Mount Carleton Park. I spent an evening at Bills home several years ago and was amazed to find myself in the company of a master storyteller, poet, and photographer and of course, canoe builder. During this brief visit he mentioned Second Falls on the Serpentine as a must see. After providing detailed information on its location I set out on this diversion from my intended destination. The drive up the 11 Mile Brook Road is very smooth, considering it is a logging road and the falls are located at 16.4 kilometers just like Bill insisted. To use one of Bills quotes, “Glad you like New Brunswick! Life doesn’t get much better than here!”

When I arrived the rain started, so I scurried along the well-hidden path to the river and falls. Due to the amount of rain fall the river was boiling over as it forced through the constriction of the falls. The thunder and rain shorten my visit and I made my way back to the car soaking wet but with several nice photographs.

I Goggled W.F Ganong and found the Archives of New Brunswick. The site had hundred of pictures taken by the renowned explorer including pictures of Second Falls on the Serpentine.