This is the jewel of the Beaver. It begins with a couple of easy waterfalls, followed by some technical rapids; the last rapid, Moshier Falls, is a long, technical Class V. Moshier Falls is easily accessible from the takeout, which yields quite a number of spectators with cameras and video cameras. It's a serious rapid, with body-beating rocks and an undercut cave. The trail on the right does double-duty as a portage route and an attainment trail for those who want to rerun it.
Also see the Taylorville Section (Class III), and the Eagle Section (Class V), both of which run on weekends in September. See also the Raquette River, Stone Valley Section (Class V), which has two releases on Labor Day weekend.
The Beaver River originates from Stillwater Reservoir in the western section of the Adirondack Park northeast of the village of Lowville. The area is undeveloped and camping is available throughout the area.
Terrific campsites are available at the Soft Maple Campground centrally located between the Taylorville and Eagle runs. Boaters also often crash at the Moshier put-in. However, camping at the Taylorville put-in is no longer permitted after reports of public nudity and midnight low-water descents of the drops at Taylorville were brought to the attention of Orion.
Moshier Falls, the last rapid on this reach, has a very nasty sieve on River Left. Just downstream of the boater in the photo above, a paddler got sucked under a rock on Aug. 31, 2003. Quick action by boaters with ropes helped stabilize him and get him out of the hazard. Moshier Falls is no place to swim!
Posted by Chris Koll:
The releases are a product of negotiations by American Whitewater that resulted in a series of 11 whitewater releases during a typical year spread over three challenging sections of Beaver River whitewater. The sections are dry except for release days when Orion Power allows water to spill back into the natural river bed creating whitewater runs ranging from class 3 to class 5.
The runs are typically short--varying in length from one to four miles--and on most release days water is scheduled on two different parts of the river. Boaters can easily paddle one section of the Beaver in the morning and then catch a second section in the afternoon.
The whitewater sections include the Taylorville run, a 1.5-mile stretch that features six class 3-4 drops. While some of the drops appear intimidating--particularly a steep 30-foot slide--the rapids are fairly straightforward and are appropriate for strong intermediate paddlers looking for an introduction to steep creeking.
The Moshier section is the jewel of the river--a 4-mile run that includes two runnable waterfalls, a number of easy class 3 rapids, and concludes with a long, technical class 5 rapid composed of four discernible drops. The section is appropriate for experts or strong intermediates with judicious scouting and/or portaging.
The Eagle section is short and demanding. Only a mile in length, the run starts off with four class-5 drops where the river drops the equivalent of 475 fpm. Eagle is a demanding expert run.
Questions regarding the Beaver can be directed to Chris Koll by email or by calling 315-652-8397.
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
This one's optional; you have to paddle upstream and then hike your boat uphill to run this steep, rock-infested slide; most boaters don't. But more seem to be running it each year.
After the pool at the putin, you'll see a huge mass of boaters, waiting, scouting, taking photos...for the First Falls. This is about the easiest waterfall you'll ever run. Just don't find yourself a little too far right, as you'll find yourself in a nasty crease that's separated some good paddlers from their boats.
After you've run it, paddle over to the right side and walk back up for a cool drop that's not as vertical as this one.
This one has a nice auto-boof feature. It can wash you up on the rocks about 10 feet away from the landing zone, so be careful. After this drop, head right for some rocky gnar.
After the second falls is a complex, shallow, rocky thing, Head far right for the eddy. Really try to stay upright through this thing. Your face will thank you.
This is the big one, the reason why the Moshier's such a gem. It's four drops in quick succession--kinda like a narrow, steep version of Lost Paddle. Use the trail on river right to scout or portage or walk back up for another run.
Spectators can get here for photos or just to watch the fun by walking downstream a couple hundred yards from the takeout and using the footbridge to cross the stream to the river-right trail.
Don't be fooled, the last section of four drops is solid Class 5 at release levels. There are easier drops upstream, one of which in particular gets run multiple times by athletic boaters willing to carry back to the top; it's about a 10-12 footer. If your mortality is never in doubt, feel free to portage the final four drops on the right, a common strategy.
Releases on one weekend in September, usually Sunday of Labor Day weekend; this year (2012), it will be September 2, 10 AM-2 PM (400 cfs). See the other Beaver and Raquette River pages (lynx in the "River Info" tab) for the rest of the Beaver and Stone Valley release schedules.
Permits are not required for this reach.
Directions (see the stylized Beaver map or the Google Map):
Most boaters will reach the Beaver via Interstate 81 north of Syracuse, NY.
Exit I-81 at Adams Center and take NY 177 east to West Lowville.
At that point, take NY 12 to Lowville.
In Lowville, just South of where Rte. 12 breaks off from Rte. 26 to the Left, turn Right onto Number Four Road.
Follow Number Four Road about 18-20 miles to Number Four. Turn Right onto Stillwater Road.
After about 2-3 miles, take a Left onto Moshier Road. At the end of Moshier Road is the takeout.
Just before the end of Moshier Road, bear Right onto the dirt road. Follow it about 2 miles to where you see the gigantic water pipes. Park in that area along the road, cross under the pipes with your boat, and follow the path down to the putin.
Left Boof, Moshier Falls
Carnage on the spillway
Moshier Run Beaver River
Scouting the put-in slide
Ted DeVoe runs the Put-in slide
Adam Herzog runs the Slide
Mmm, Mmm, Beaver
You are clear for take-off
Ramping it up on the Mosier
Rescue at Moshier Falls
Her First Waterfall
First Falls on the Moshier
One-Bladed Even !
See her braids ?
Testing out his new Micro 230
Settin' up for the next drop...
DJ in Last Drop
DJ approaching last drop of Moshier Falls
Moshier Section Falls
If someone gets hurt on a river, or you read about a whitewater-related injury, please report it to
American Whitewater. Don't worry about multiple submissions from other witnesses, as our safety
editors will turn multiple witness reports into a single unified accident report.
“Don’t call this a festival,” New York legend whitewater legend Chris Koll said of the original Beaver River Rendezvous in 1998.
The three-day event has stayed true to that mantra, despite the popular “Beaverfest” dubbing, the event lacks any sort of commercial qualities. Just great whitewater.
Northeast boaters will again have the opportunity to boat in the Adirondacks this year on the Moose, Raquette, and Beaver rivers. Be sure to mark your calendars for these releases and join us for the Moosefest and Beaver River Rendezvous this year
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.
Log into the American Whitewater website and you can contribute to river descriptions,
flow and access tips, and maps associated with runs you've done. You can even add new
runs to the inventory!