Starting from the AMC Cardigan Lodge, the trail quickly heads northwest from the Manning Trail
past a potable water source and camping sites on a broad trail along a tributary of Bailey Brook. After 0.8 miles, the Back 80 Trail proper turns left from the Back 80 Loop adjacent to an old cellar hole.
From here, the trail jaunts slightly uphill finally narrowing through mixed forest and hopping a couple streams before coming to more softwood dominated areas and beaver-worked flowage areas of Davis Brook. These are among the most scenic lengths of the Back 80 with some peeks through openings in the canopy over old beaver pond meadows of the lower hilltops and rocky cliffs of the Mowglis Trail
junction area to the west, located north of Cardigan and Firescrew peaks. The trail turns uphill a bit more on its final stretch before rolling in to give way to the Elwell Trail
From here, or points along the Back 80 Trail (Back 80 Loop), several destinations are within reach such as Hanging Rock, Cilley's Cave, New Colony Rd in Orange, Mowglis Mtn, Oregon Mtn, Carter-Gibbs Trail via Old Dicey Rd and more.
There are also numerous ski trails in this area for those seeking winter fun.