||This portage was used by Native Americans, explorers, Jesuit missionaries, war parties, surveyors, settlers, and lumbering operations. Missionary Sebastien Râles and his colleagues, as well as the celebrated Arnold Expedition were just two of many groups to make passages along this route. By the mid-1800s, portions of the Lake Megantic trail fulfilled different needs. The section from Lake Megantic to the Dead River allowed passage for French-Canadian settlers between Canada and Maine. The portion from the Kennebec to the Dead River allowed lumbermen access to work camps in the Dead River watershed.
Between 1924 and 1927, the 93 mile (150 kilometre) " Arnold Trail Highway " was built along portions of the old portage. It is known today as Route 27. Several roads in Maine, including Route 16, also connected this highway to the Rangeley Lakes area.