Wallkill, New York, US
|Usual Difficulty||I-II (for normal flows)|
|WALLKILL RIVER AT GARDINER NY|
|usgs-01371500||400 - 4000 cfs||I-II||01h35m||178 cfs (too low)|
Lat/longitude coords and mileage are approximate, from TopoZone.
The Wallkill is a long, and mostly calm river flowing through suburban and farm areas. As a result of flowing through farms in northern New Jersey and Orange County New York the river will be less than pristine by the time it reaches Walden. It would be possible to put in considerably further upstream if one wanted. This river is much more suited to canoes or other boats that will reduce the paddler's intimacy with the water.
Just below a significant dam in Walden there are some minor rapids and another small dam before the river becomes flat and slow for most of the distance to the take out. Another short stretch of rapids (using the term loosely) about 3.5 miles below the route 44/55 bridge in Gardiner probably determines the lower range at which this whole section could be paddled, though it would be possible to portage along the road.
Shortly after passing under the NY Thruway bridge about 8 miles downstream of New Paltz the river reaches another significant dam at Dashville. There is a small park on route 213, at the covered bridge immediately after the thruway bridge, and this is probably the best place to end a trip on the Wallkill, particularly at anything beyond relatively modest levels.
If one wishes to make the long portage past the Dashville dam (or put in below it) the river continues another 2 miles before reaching the Sturgeon Pool, which is created by the river's last hydroelectric dam. Continuing beyond the Sturgeon Pool will require a long portage around the 120' high dam to reach the final 1/4 mile of the Wallkill River. It is reportedly possible to park on Coutant Road, on the left (west) side of the river below the dam and walk through the woods to reach the river. It would also be possible to paddle about 3 miles down Rondout Creek (really a small, calm river at this point) to a NY state public access on Creek Locks Road.
Catskills Area Reaches
Downstate New York Area Reaches