Otter Creek, Vermont, US
Beldens Falls to Bleeders Dam (Otter Creek gorge)
||III (for normal flows)
Otter Creek Falls
Otter Creek FallsPhoto of Rick Cooley taken 5/02 @ ~1000 cfs
There are two whitewater sections:
1) Middlebury Falls -- 18' high falls right in downtown Middlebury, plus a meaty ledge hole
just below it. Put-in and take out are in same spot -- there is only one bridge right in downtown
Middlebury, falls are right under it, take the first road just after bridge on downstream side, go
park down there. Watch out for strainers.
2) Otter Creek Gorge -- one cl. III rapid, a couple of light cl. II. Put-in below Belden Falls Dam.
A short class 2 leads to the gorge entrance. The short gorge is straightforward and fairly short,
but has boils and undercut walls, so stay straight down the middle. Long flat pool afterwards to
collect any pieces.
A class 2 wave train rapid leads down to the confluence with the New Haven by the campground.
Dog Team Falls, on the New Haven river, behind the Dog Team Tavern, can be used as an alternative
access point for Otter Creek if the gorge is too high
Below the campground a ledge rapid forms a small playwave on river right as the river splits round
an island. This is best in high water. From there its flatwater all the way to the takeout, on
river right before the road bridge.
Put -- go north from Middlebury on Rt. 7 until about 1 mile, when you see a sign for New Haven
Mills on the right. Take the dirt road on the left at this intersection, signed Beldens Falls Rd.
Follow this down across the railroad tracks to the put-in just below the Dam.
Take-out -- Go North on Rt. 7 from put-in; at 2.2 miles (measured by John Jackson, 2004-06-28) take
a left on Campground Road; when that road runs to a T in a mile, take a left. The take out is just
before the bridge.
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Last Updated: 2011-07-18 01:36:35