Roaring Branch, Vermont, US
|Usual Difficulty||V (for normal flows)|
|Avg. Gradient||230 fpm|
|Big Branch-Mt. Tabor to Appalachian Trail|
|river-2991||1.50 - 5.50 ft||V||ft|
Access is along Kelly Stand road which can by muddy when the river is running. Four wheel drive recommended. The river itself is a classic very steep New England creek.
The Roaring Branch is a highly underrated Vermont creek. Mainly due to the fact that the white water comes not in distinct rapids but rather as a three and a half mile gauntlet with a couple highlights. High flows are best on here to pad out the shallow nature of the river, however due to the steep gradient, high flows also bring little chance for respite and introduce serious consequences for a swim. Early on the river will be small and very steep, with one rapid dubbed Spasmodic Mastication for its long complex and very rocky nature. It ends in a good sized hole. After the river confluences with the south fork it becomes bigger with countless good boofs scattered along the length, and also countless holes, big ones if the water is high. Towards the end come a set of slides stacked up which create large curling waves, holes and tough moves. The very bottom is a big uniform hole which is best avoided on far left, and is a good place to set safety. Below here is the takeout bridge.
The Big Branch gauge has been offline since 2010. The Batten Kill gauge is downstream, but no correlation data is known. If you run this section please leave a comment with the gauge reading.