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Mirkwood was the nickname given to a road in Hawkins that went past the Hawkins National Laboratory. Its nickname is based off a forest in The Hobbit and was given the name by Will, Lucas, Dustin, and Mike. It is located where the roads Cornwallis and Kerley meet. It was the road that Will took to go home from Mike Wheeler's house.



Ep1-Monster on Mirkwood

The Demogorgon on Mirkwood.

On November 6, 1983, Will Byers unexpectedly encountered a monster called the Demogorgon on Mirkwood while returning home at night from Mike's house. He fled through the forest to his house, but the Demogorgon chased and subsequently abducted him to an alternate dimension called the Upside Down.

The police found Will's bike by the side of the road the following day, but could not find him. Disappointed and dissatisfied with the police's efforts, his friends Mike Wheeler, Dustin Henderson, and Lucas Sinclair went to Mirkwood together on the night of November 7. They found an odd girl called Eleven in the nearby forest.[1] The next night, Jonathan Byers went to Mirkwood and took photographs of a party at Steve Harrington's house, including photos of Barbara Holland sitting by the pool before she was abducted by the Demogorgon.[2]

Ep1-Boys searching Will at Mirkwood

The boys finding Eleven.

At some point that week, Dale and Henry went hunting near Mirkwood and disappeared. Bev Mooney, who was presumably close with the two, reported them missing at Hawkins Police Station. Sometime later, in the Upside Down version of Mirkwood, when Will was searching for a way out to the real world, he came across Henry who was fatally wounded by the Demogorgon. In his dying moments, Henry requested him to get his friend Dale, who also got injured, back home. As Will offered him solace that they would all return home, the man passed away peacefully.[3]

Jonathan Byers and Nancy Wheeler went hunting for the Demogorgon on Mirkwood, but found a wounded deer. As they were about to perform a mercy kill on it, it was suddenly pulled away by an unseen force. Following the trail of blood, Nancy discovered an open gate in the base of a tree. Entering the portal, she found herself in another dimension where she witnessed the Demogorgon feeding on the deer.[4] When the Demogorgon was alerted to her presence, she ran away, screaming for Jonathan's help. Following the sound of her voice, Jonathan found the gate and quickly pulled her out to safety. The gate closed immediately after, leaving no evidence that it had ever existed.[5]


At a Surfer Boy Pizza restaurant, Mike told Eleven that he felt as if his life started the day he found her at Mirkwood, to give her emotional support as she battled Vecna, the leader of the Upside Down.[6]


Mirkwood is located where the roads Cornwallis and Kerley meet and goes past the Hawkins National Laboratory.[1] It is in close proximity to both the Byers house and the Harrington house, with only the forest separating them.[7]

Behind the scenes[]

Cornwallis and Kerley is a real intersection in Durham, North Carolina, the hometown of the Duffer Brothers.


The name Mirkwood originates from a forest in Old Norse mythology, where it was called Myrkviðr. It means "dark wood" or "black forest." Inspired by the mythology, Mirkwood is also a forest in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien where the character, Legolas, originated. It used to be called Greenwood the Great before it was taken over by the evil necromancer Sauron.

Notes and references[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 "The Vanishing of Will Byers"
  2. "The Weirdo on Maple Street"
  3. The Other Side Issue 3, page 17
  4. "The Flea and the Acrobat"
  5. "The Monster"
  6. "The Piggyback"
  7. After running his bike off the road, Will ran through the forest to his home in Chapter One and Jonathan heard sounds from Steve's pool party in Chapter Two when he investigated the scene.