Source: Greg and Sue Hanlon's Steep Creeks of New England, which has more info on this run. Text used with permission.
Directions: from Lincoln, drive 2.5 miles East on Rte. 112 (Kancamagus Hwy). Park in the dirt parking lot, river right, just downstream of the Loon Mtn. Bridge.
Putin: continue East on 112 ~ 6.2 miles, crossing the East Branch to the first bridge across the Hancock Branch. Park in the Cheney Brook / East Pond Trail lot on the right.
This run includes 2 miles on East Br., Pemigewasset; these two miles aren't figured in the gradient listed above.
Judge the water level from the road. The gage referenced above is approximate, based on a correlation.A better guide is the E. Br. Pemi. 12.0 ft (9000 cfs) usually means a high level on the Hancock Branch.
Five of us ran this river when the East Branch of the Pemi was at about 8000 cfs (very high). Four were in kayaks, I was in an open boat. The steepest part of the run is the put in down to Otter Rocks, which is too tight for an open boat.
The river opens up considerably below Otter Rocks because of a sizable tributary at the Rocks. Most of the run is boulder gardens with small to medium sized rocks, easy Class 5. There are two steep ledgey type drops, one about 1/3 of the way down, the other about 2/3 of the way down. We portaged the second drop because there is a very sticky looking hole at the bottom, which would be difficult to avoid. Others have run this drop successfully, scout it first.
There was a river wide tree just below water level in May 2001 about half way down the run, plus a fair amount of smaller trees in other locations. Be careful.
Open boaters: if you are running at very high water as we were, you should make the ferry across the East Branch of the Pemi to the takeout at the campground starting at river right on the Hancock immediately where the Hancock Branch meets the Pemi. I started about 100 yards downstream of the confluence, and got swamped before I could finish the crossing. Alternatively, you could carry up to the Kancamaugus Highway about 1/4 mile along the East Branch on river left.
boated this river today and I found the section between the put in and otter rocks to definitely passable for a 12ft Esquif Nitro the east branch was pumping at 6000 when I made the ferry to the Hancock campground. A really fun run that kept me on my toes the whole way.
Judge the water level from the road. The gage referenced above is approximate, based on a correlation.
A better guide is the E. Br. Pemi. 12.0 ft (9000 cfs) usually means a high level on the Hancock Branch.
Permits are not required for this reach.
We have no additional detail on this route.
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Northeast boaters can celebrate that another beloved whitewater gem has been protected. Paddlers on the Winnipeseaukee River are now assured that the put-in on the Lower Winni in Northfield, NH will be forever protected thanks to the donation of a parcel from Gloria Blais in memory of her husband Roger. Gloria donated the land to the Town of Northfield for the purpose of assuring that future generations of boaters will have access to the river. Protecting river access to the Winni is part of an ongoing effort by AW in the northeast region to protect river access.
A hardy group of northeast boaters climbed into the natural river channel below a hydropower dam to participate in a flow study designed to assess whether whitewater flows should be restored to this dewatered river reach on the Connecticut River. While significant obstacles remain, this site has the potential for providing instruction, playboating, and a big water feature that that could be run throughout much of the year and provide a much needed boost to the local economy.
American Whitewater and Merrimack Valley Paddlers have reached an agreement to purchase a 10-acre parcel fronting on Contoocook River in Henniker, NH. The land serves as an important launch point for whitewater paddlers enjoying the popular section of the river that runs from Hillsborough to Henniker. This section of the Contoocook River contains rapids ranging in difficulty from Class II to Class IV.
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