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Difficulty V
Length 0 Miles
Gauge MOOSE RIVER AT MCKEEVER NY
Flow Range 2 - 8 FT
Flow Rate as of: 47 minutes ago 4.51 [FT]
Next Release 2018-10-28
Reach Info Last Updated 02/23/2018 5:55 pm

River Description


2018 Release Dates:

Spring: April 15, 22, 29 - May 6, 12, 13, 19 20, 26, 27 - June 2, 3

Fall: October 7, 12,13, 14, 20, 21, 27, 28

 

Spring Moose-Black Festival Page

Moose Festival Page

All boaters planning to paddle the Bottom Moose Releases are required to sign-in at the power station office (located between Agers Falls and the take-out overlooking the right left side of Crystal) before accessing the river. On release days a sign reading "Whitewater recreation sign-in" is placed by the side of the road at the entrance to the office. Click here for the details.

 

OVERVIEW

Paddlers should have Class 4 skills if they want to have fun on the Bottom Moose at normal and Class 5 at higher flows.

Releases occur on weekends in October and April-May.

Summer time on the Moose is a local favorite. The river becomes more like a traditional creek at low water, opening new lines, and giving beginners a chance to learn on warm reliable class 4-5. The run stops after double drop without the releases once the river is below 4-4.5 feet, but with more and different lines this is not a problem. Once the river drops below traditional levels the power company is unable to produce power and river is low but runnable from below Agers Falls to Magilla.

DIRECTIONS

From the West:
From the NY Thruway, take Exit 33 (Rome). Head right from the ramp, taking Rte. 365 East, toward Rome.
In Rome, follow the signs for Rte. 26 North.
Follow 26 for about 31 miles into Collinsville.
In Collinsville, you'll come to an intersection where Rte. 26 bangs Left. Don't follow 26 here; instead, head Straight onto Rte. 12D.
You'll cross Rte. 12 and follow the road you're on through town. You're now on Center St.; follow it as it curves to the Right.
After you curve around, take your first Left. Cross the Black River and bear right onto Laura St.
After about half a mile, bear Left onto Lyonsdale Rd.
To get to the takeout from here, simply take a left after about 0.3 miles onto Shibley Rd.; after crossing the Moose River, take your first Right onto the dirt road. Follow it around and park in the parking areas on River Right.
To get to the putin from Lyonsdale Rd., click on the Map or Directions tab in this page. Follow Lyonsdale Rd., bear Left onto Hunkins Rd., and take a Left at the T-intersection onto Fowlersville Rd.
You can park in the sandy parking area on River Left or cross the bridge and take the funky sandy road to putin on River Right.

If you're coming up via Rte. 12, zoom in on Port Leyden to see the roads in that area; if you're coming via Rte. 26 and 12D, zoom in on Lyons Falls. Then click on the Map tab in this page to get to the putin.  

Latitude/longitude data are verified by GPS.

 

SAFETY WARNING: Beware of logs and stumps with huge root balls, specifically at Agers Falls and the Alpine Line at Crystal. You can scout both prior to the release. Alpine Lumber can only be detected from downstream (a short walk up from the takeout). Agers Lumber can be seen from river left by the fence. There is wood throughout, which can be easily missed but would be dangerous for a swimmer. (Thanks to AW Safety Chair Tim Kelley for this warning.)

TROUBLEMAKERS

And now for something completely different: ZoneDoggyDogg runs Lyon's Falls!

Click here for Karl Gesslein's view of the Bottom Moose. (Clicking will open up a new browser window.)
If you like that, check out some more drawings here, here, and here.

OTHER RESOURCES

Click here for a collection of Youtube vids on the Bottom Moose.

OTHER NEARBY RIVERS

Lower Moose (Class III-IV)
Middle Moose (Class III)
Black (Class III)
Independence (Class II-V+)
Otter Creek (Class III-IV[V+])

 

Tug Hill - Old Forge Area Reaches

Beaver (1. Moshier)                               Beaver (2. Eagle)                                 Beaver (3. Taylorville)

Black (1.)                                                Black (2.)                                             Black (3.)

Black (4.)                                                Black (5.)                                             Black, S. Branch

Cincinnati Creek                                     Crystal Creek                                       Deer River (Section 1)

Deer River (Section 2)                        Fish Creek, E. Branch                          Independence River (1. Upper) 

Independence River (2. Main)               Indian (S.Br. Moose trib.)                     Little Black Creek

Little Woodhull Creek                             Mad River                                           Mill Creek 

Mohawk (1.)                                           Moose (1. Middle)                                Moose (2. Lower) 

Moose (3. Bottom)                                 Moose, Middle Branch                          Moose, S. Branch (1.)  

Moose, S. Branch (2.)                            Negro Brook                                       Otter Creek  

Roaring Brook (Brokeback Gorge)    West Canada Creek (1.)                      West Canada Creek (2. Ohio Gorge) 

West Canada Creek, S. Branch                Woodhull Creek (Upper)                     Woodhull Creek (Middle) 

Woodhull Creek (Miracle Mile)

 

Google Map of New York Whitewater

New York Whitewater Paddlers Facebook Group

 

 

Rapid Descriptions

Putin

Class - N/A Mile - 0
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

Putin river right or river left, upstream of Fowlersville Falls. You can run one rapid just a hundred yards above the road, if you wish or put in at the bridge and start your day off with a Fowlersville Fling.

For those looking for a bigger challenge find the ramp hidden in the woods.  Be sure not to land too flat and don't try it under 3ft!

Fowlersville Falls

Class - IV+ Mile - 0.2
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

Starts with a bang!
This photogenic baby is a huuuge slide, with a terminal hole in the middle. The hole is easy enough to avoid; at normal levels, everyone runs this on the left--and then maybe they climb up and run it again, because nobody got them on video the first time.

At 3ft or below the center and right lines open up.

Funnel

Class - III+ Mile - 0.7
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

Technical, with a diamond-splitter rock at the bottom. The rock becomes exposed at levels below about 3 feet. It's best to bang through a hole toward the right and ride the channel to the right of the diamond-splitter.
There's an optional boof for those who want to provide carnage for their video-wielding buds. (See the photos on the right for the boof and the effects of a blown boof; click on the photos for the full-sized version.) Boof is best at and below 3ft

 

Knife's Edge

Class - V Mile - 1.9
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

Scout from the river-right sloping rock face.
The standard line here is the S-curve: ride a very narrow shelf on far river-right, then to drop off the shelf and snake your way between two large boulders (first photo on the right). The middle route, just left of the first boulder, is dangerous at low water, as there's a nasty pothole which caused a fatality in 1987 (see the rescue, second photo on the right). Finally, for the adventuresome, there's a niche boof way river right. Better not drop off the shelf early, as you'll be in a world of hurt in the rocky channel down there. If you don't like the look of the rapid, there's a sneak to the river left of the whole thing.

Difficulty ranges from II-V+ depending on flow and line



 

Double Drop

Class - IV Mile - 2.1
Rapid Thumbnail Missing
Technical, with a couple of holes. After the pool following this rapid is the mandatory portage at the power plant.
Double Drop begins with a right-to-left snaking line around some holes (first photo--click on photo for the full-sized version),
...and ends with a boof in the middle or left (second photo--click on photo for the full-sized version).

Portage

Class - N/A Mile - 2.2
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

Get out and walk around the dam. This is also the takeout if you're running the "Bottom," which paddlers often do when there's enough water to run the first four rapids but no scheduled release--and therefore not enough water to run the "Bottom Bottom."

Be careful, especially in winter. This might be the most dangerous thing you do all day.

Ager's Falls

Class - III Mile - 3
Rapid Thumbnail Missing
One of the easier 18-footers around. There is some minor complexity to the runout, but this waterfall can be run just about everywhere. That's why there are so many photos of people running it two and three at a time.

Shurform

Class - IV+ Mile - 3.8
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

Right Channel: Steep, long, shallow, and technical. If you mess up the approach, you get up close and personal with a rocky mess in the middle. The approach is most easily run by punching a small but deceptively squirrelly wave and getting left. Stay high and to the left before dropping down at the very end. Another option is to run just right of the rooster tail.

Left Channel: Oh, yes: if you go left of the island, then it's really technical, with an undercut rock and a pitonat the bottom. Rate that line a 5.1. Come into the bottom facing 45* right and charging along the diagonal right, or stay left and try to ride over the peton just outside the under-cut.

Powerline

Class - III+ Mile - 4.1
Rapid Thumbnail Missing

Nicest, easiest rapid that draws the most blood on the river. Read and run down the center working right if you aren't comfortable. Otherwise the eddy moves are a lot of fun (until you miss one that is) Careful of the pourover rock at the bottom.

Crystal

Class - 5.1 Mile - 4.9
Rapid Thumbnail Missing
Whoa, Momma! This is one of the most visually impressive rapids in the East. From a rock at the bottom of the rapid, you can see it snake around for a quarter mile. It begins with a horseshoe hole which can mess with you, your boat, and your plans for the future. Typical, at normal levels, is to boof it left, as in the picture at the right (you know what to do: click on photo for the full-sized version).

Then, deal with the squirrelwater to line up for the final drop, a fifteen-footer with a spanky hole at the bottom. At low water (less than 2.5), it's really important to avoid penciling in on the right--the rock is exposed and ankle-breaking. At higher water (3.0+), it's harder to make the right-to-left move for the final Falls--but the middle line opens up, so you can bump'n'grind down that if need be.
Whoa, Momma!, this is a fun one!

Another low water option is to start on the eddy on river right above the horseshoes, ferry left into the pothole eddy between the horseshoes, then drop down.

 

Magilla

Class - 5.1 Mile - 5.1
Rapid Thumbnail Missing
This one's optional; many paddlers take out before it, and it may not have any water even when the rest of the Moose is running. (It's dependent on yet another dam release.)

It kinda looks like Gorilla on the Green, but it's not as big a drop and the approach isn't so nasty. Nonetheless, don't drop your guard on the approach, either. It's not quite trivial--as seen in the first photo to the right (you know what to do: click on the photo for the full-sized version).

The second photo shows the preferred boof off the drop.

You can also run the middle channel off Magilla--just right of the normal boof line. That's extremely tight; it's easy to bang your elbows on the rock walls on the way down (don't ask how I know).


 

Matilda is another spout off the shelf. Enter a few feet right off the dam wall on the left. The landing isn't bad at higher flows, but brutal at low water (locals walk the dam and run the drop). The water constricts into a slotted channel and quickly snakes around to the lip. Take a few strokes left to try to get centered as you roll off the top of the lip.

 

 

Takeout

Class - Mile - 5.1
Rapid Thumbnail Missing
Takeout on River Right, either before Magilla or after.

Spine Compressor

Class - N/A Mile - 5.4

Below the next dam pond is a dam on the right under a green bridge.  This is the top of Spine Compressor, a seldom run drop that requires either very high flows, or heavily damaged splash boards. Go center on the dam and continue down a small wave train towards the lip. Be sure to hit the crease where there is the most flow right of center. A strong boof stomped at the last moment is the only way to have a soft landing. At most there is 2ft of fast moving water down there. The hole after the drop is no joke, be ready for a huge hit. Once you recover another drop is around the bend before you get to a camp site on the right.

Comments

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David Su
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2 years ago

from FB 5.24.2016 Mike Webster Yes. Except for Moose Fest in October, releases increase the flow over Agers and down. Generally a Moose release can not effect the river above Agers. General? Like · Reply · 1 · 22 hrs · Edited Eric Adsit Eric Adsit Between 2.2 (ish) and 5.5 feet on the McKeever gauge, if the dam is online and no release is scheduled, there will be no water from the Portage dam down. Below 2.5 and above 5.5, some water is allowed to pass through into the Bottom Bottom, but if it's below 2.4 it's not really worth doing.The Top 4 run with natural flow all the time, but as Mike said, during October Moosefest they get a bump up from the draw down of the Fulton Chain of lakes. Unlike · Reply · 3 · 22 hrs Jeremy Poulin Jeremy Poulin That being said,there is a release this coming weekend Like · Reply · 22 hrs Sam Bernstein Sam Bernstein The dam occasionally goes offline as well in which case the section just becomes undamned essentially I believe. Happened last fall for several weeks. Like · Reply · 20 hrs Chris Koll Chris Koll A Bottom Moose release simply means that some or all of the water in the river is allowed to spill over the dam at Agers. During a typical release, they'll spill around 600 CFS (which is about 3'). Obviously, if the river is under 3'--the spill is less. When the river is higher--say around 4'--they'll continue to divert some water which keeps the Bottom four more manageable. Unlike · Reply · 1 · 19 hrs

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n/a
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6 years ago

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Jack M. Carter
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8 years ago

how would you rate the difficulty of the hike to put in and the hike out?

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Matthew Parmeter
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11 years ago

While it was only my first one I have to say Moose Fest 2007 seemed to be a huge success. For anyone that was running Fowlersville Falls between 11am and Noon on Sunday or Magilla at around 1:30 I probably took photos of your run. I have over 600 high quality digital shots. Most of them from Fowlersville taken on the approach to the slide. I was just trying to get some good actions shots, but figure why let them go to waste. I am in the process of uploading them all to a Walmart photo group. The link is http://photos.walmart.com/groups/moosefest2007 so feel free to help yourself. You can also add your photos to the mix if I am not mistaken, so if you have some good ones of other people throw them up and share. I also have video from Fowlersville and Shureform so if you are in a Fowlersville picture or saw me standing at Shureform in the red fleece, shoot me an e-mail and I will see what I can do about getting the video to you. moosefest@howgreatami.com

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11 years ago

The sneak(take left right before the rapid) to knifes edge is a good alternative at lower levels. Just remember to stay right off the first drop unless you want to scrape up your elbow

Summary of Gauge Readings

This reach can have two different levels, in a manner of speaking. Halfway down the reach (not far above Ager's Falls) is a mandatory portage at a power plant which diverts approximately 1300 cfs. Therefore, when there's no scheduled release, a minimum of about 4.5' is required. Under those conditions, the first half has big water, and the second half has the equivalent of 2.5' or so.


Chris Koll shared:

"Be aware that the release only allows the flow already coming down the river to spill over the dam. Minimum levels (around 2.5' in my opinion) are typically present but not guaranteed on release weekends. Check the McKeever gauge to see if the river is too high or too low on a release day.

"Please be aware that the drawdown from the upstream Fulton Chain of Lakes will not commence until the Friday before Moose Fest. Consequently, favorable water levels are not guaranteed for the opening two fall weekends.
"For example, as of Wednesday, October 2, 2002, at 9 AM, the McKeever gauge is at 2.94'. This flow originates primarily from the North and West branches of the river and would be considered adequate for the Bottom Moose but a little low for the Middle and Lower sections of the river.
"However, the drawdown will kick in an additional 400-500 cfs down the Middle Branch (which right now is a little more than a trickle). If the river already has a flow around 3, the additional water would kick levels up a half a foot or more--which would make favorable levels for runs on the Lower and Middle sections.
"In 2000 and 2001, we entered the Fest weekend with levels around 2.3'-2.4'. After the drawdown water hit--voila--the level jumped to 3.2'.
"Anyway, just a little bit of rain will keep the river low but navigable for the first weekends before the drawdown kicks flow up to optimal levels."
Levels, according to Chris Koll:
2.6-2.7 is around 500 cfs.
3.5' is around 750 cfs.
4' is an even 1000 cfs.
5' is 1850 cfs.

Gauge NameReadingTimeComment
MOOSE RIVER AT MCKEEVER NY
AW Gauge Info
4.51 ft 00h47m n/a

Release Schedule

More Information

We have had releases on this reach but don't show any currently. This information is gathered by the public. If you know about releases then contact us about them. If you would volunteer to enter the releases, then reach out to us.

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Directions Description


DIRECTIONS

From the West:

From the NY Thruway, take Exit 33 (Rome). Head right from the ramp, taking Rte. 365 East, toward Rome.

In Rome, follow the signs for Rte. 26 North.

Follow 26 for about 31 miles into Collinsville.

In Collinsville, you'll come to an intersection where Rte. 26 bangs Left. Don't follow 26 here; instead, head Straight onto Rte. 12D.

You'll cross Rte. 12 and follow the road you're on through town. You're now on Center St.; follow it as it curves to the Right.

After you curve around, take your first Left. Cross the Black River and bear right onto Laura St.

After about half a mile, bear Left onto Lyonsdale Rd.
To get to the takeout

from here, simply take a left after about 0.3 miles onto Shibley Rd.; after crossing the Moose River, take your first Right onto the dirt road. Follow it around and park in the parking areas on River Right.


To get to the putin

from Lyonsdale Rd., follow Lyonsdale Rd., bear Left onto Hunkins Rd., and take a Left at the T-intersection onto Fowlersville Rd.

You can park in the sandy parking area on River Left or cross the bridge and take the funky sandy road to putin on River Right.

If you're coming up via Rte. 12, zoom in on Port Leyden to see the roads in that area; if you're coming via Rte. 26 and 12D, zoom in on Lyons Falls. Follow the directions above to get to the putin.

Latitude/longitude data are verified by GPS.

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Date Flow Result Factor  
2018-05-26 n/a Injury Read More
2011-10-15 High Near Miss/Rescue Other Read More
2000-10-29 Medium Injury Solo Paddling Read More
1986-05-04 Medium Fatality Other Read More

Alerts

       

News

article main photo

Moose River Video

2011-01-18 00:00:00-05
Mark Singleton

2010 marked the 25th anniversary of protecting the Black and Moose rivers!  View an online video documentary on the Moose River and the early role that American Whitewater played in protecting this amazing river.

article main photo

Don't Get Stranded at Agers Falls on the Moose: Always Sign In & Out (NY)

2002-05-07 00:00:00-04
Jason Robertson

Chris Koll reminds us that signing in only takes 30 seconds and is required for water releases. This procedure has been in effect for 16 years but few boaters are following the agreement.

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Alex Barham

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Matt Muir

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Mark Singleton