Note: Any run on this river will also include the first 3 miles of the East Branch below Franconia Falls. So the actual length of the run would be 13.5 miles.
Source: Greg and Sue Hanlon's Steep Creeks of New England, which has more info on this run. Text used with permission.
Directions (this is a very long shuttle):
For the Zealand Pond put-in: From I-93 N, take Exit 35 to Rte. 3 N; continue to Rt. 302 at Twin Mountain. Head right on 302 East; head ~2.5 miles to the sign for Zealand Camping Area. Turn right; head up the Forest Service Road approx. 3.5 miles to a small hiker's lot at the end of the road. Hike 2.6 miles to Whitewall Brook below Zealand Falls. Put in as soon as the stream has enough water to paddle.
For the Ethan Pond put-in: From the Zealand Camping Area; follow Rt. 302 past Bretton Woods Ski Area and the Mt. Washington Hotel. Continue thru Crawford Notch to where the Appalachian Trail crosses Rt. 302. Turn right and follow a short access road to the end and park. Hike up the Appalachian Trail 2.4 miles (1400 feet in elevation) to Ethan Pond (the headwaters of the North Fork). Continue past the pond until enough streams enter the North Fork to make it paddleable.
To the takeout: follow 302 West back to Rte. 3 South. Take 3 to I-93 South through Franconia Notch to Exit 32. Follow Rt. 112 East past Loon Mountain. Cross the East Branch of the Pemigewasset and park in the Forest Service lot at the Wilderness Trail on the left.
The gage linked above is on the East Branch of the Pemi and has been recorrelated to the new readings. The visual paddlers gage on this run is at the takeout bridge (Rte. 112). 1.3 on the bridge "seems to correlate" with a minimum North Fork level.
8 years ago
by Mark Lacroix
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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