Put in elevation........885'
Take out elevation......557'
River width average.....18'
River geology...........Granite ledge, small to medium boulders
River water quality.....Excellent, clarity good to excellent.
Scenery.................Good mountain scenery, route 25a occasionally visible
on river left.
Wildlife................Deer, moose, hawks.
Dartmouth paddlers started running this in '96. Here is a write-up of how we broke it down from then:
It is a great run because it is very continuous class III, with most of the drops described in detail being in the IV range. So even for a really good boater you're never bored, nor is there any flatwater to get across. About halfway through the run, not long after you leave the road, the first horizon line means you have gotten into "Hola" and now the thick of the things. It is basically a 1 meter drop into a very aerated hole, but brace well coming through, as there is another hole immediately below due to a shallow rock that will great you in the language of it's choosing. Prediction: pain. Then it is back to the class III boat scouting for a while. After half a kilometer (1/3 mi.) brings you to a sloping drop into a ledge with a large rock at the bottom right. You want to run this far right to avoid the piton rock which left an indelible impression on 2 of the 10 boats that have run it, gaining it the name "Pignose." 100 meters down is "Lefty's Grave" due to the Tombstone-esque rock on ricer left which 90% of the flow drops onto. Boof center with right angle and then work back left to catch the homeplate eddy (get in and you're safe). A swim would be ugly, as 15 meters (20 yards) down are two cass IV back-to-back. The first is "Right Slide Up," as 'tis a slippery slope of rock and any inversion would be most unfortunate. The problematic of said rapid is the guardian rock above the eddy at the bottom right which you want to catch. The eddy, that is, not the rock. You can sneak past the rock on the far right, or run the hero route down the middle and then eddy out. Immediately below this is Screw Two (too?), a drop named for its striking similarity to Corkscrew in the five falls of Chatooga section IV, only mirrored left-to-right. Start river right and peel out wide to prevent dropping down the vertical shaft, ride up onto the hole/pillow at the bottom left and get flushed to the right. It's all in the line-up. After that, you just drop in and hold on. Another quarter kilometer brings you to "Power Trip," easily recognizable by the high-voltage lines which are the reason for the clear cut up to the road mentioned in the "level" section above. Go left on the first ledge, and then either sneak left, or work center to left. It's best to scout the next bit when checking the level, as the channel has been straightened and it is non-stop until the end of the clear cut, and any strainers here would be quite a bummer. The next rapid, just below the Bachelor family's home is quite a party. Run the two ledges center to right, punching the hole and watching out for the curler of f the left wall. Things mellow for a half a kilometer or so as you come into "civilization," at least by central New Hampshire standards. The river winds through a few people's back yards, passing in to the "center" of Wentworth. The next significant drop is "Jiffy Lube" which you can run blind just entering center and sliding down the right. I'd run it sans scouting if the locals seem to be getting restless. Unfortunately the final/crux rapid is up next and scouting is definitely advised. You're definitely in someone's back yard, so try to be nice. Across the street is the Wentworth Inn. If you stay there (a quaint old place) tell them the first folks to kayak the river sent you, and we say "hey." It can't cost much, and ensures good vibes and easy access to this fine stretch and the proximity to other good creeks is phenomenal. Anyways, the "Inn-d of the Road" is a solid IV+, with some maneuvering at the entrance which would be great on it's own, but then goes over a 2-3meter drop that you want to boof well, as there's rocks down thar, particularly on the left. You should have felt comfortable with everything else if you're thinking about running this, not only because of the consequences, but just think how embarrassing it will be if the good 'ol folks at the Wentworth Inn are standing riverside with their camera and yours and you pencil into "the granite of New Hampshire." It could be ugly. And you might make the Wentworth paper as the first hack to run the drop.
Mileage, name on AW site, class per AW; our names.
1.6 Roadside III; Hola.
2.1 Funnel III+; Right Slide Up.
2.3 Island III; Lefty's Demise.
2.3 Megaslide 5.0; Screw 2.
2.4 Z-Chute III+; I considered this the lead-in of Power Trip.
2.5 Powerline IV; Power Trip.
2.6; Minislide IV; Bachelor Party.
2.9 Backyard Slide IV; Jiffy Lube.
3.0 Backyard Boof IV; Innd Of the Road.
3.1 Take Out.
8 years ago
by Mark Lacroix
The season is usually in spring (April/May) and after heavy rains. There is no gage on this river, paddlers must drive up to the last drop on Ellsworth Lane Rd and look to see if there is enough water. A rough correlation can be made with the Baker River gage. It is estimated that a level of 3.0 feet on the Baker could be a minimum flow level on Pond Brook.
Permits are not required for this reach.
We have no additional detail on this route.
Use the map below to calculate how
to arrive to the main town from your zipcode.
Lower Pond Brook Map
Upper Pond Brook Map
Paul at Roadside
Marc at the top of Megaslide
Marc at Z-curl
Marc at Minislide
Dave at Island Drop
Dave Livingston at Backyard Boof
Dave at Powerline
Dave at Funnel Ledge
Chris at Backyard Boof
Butch at the top of Megaslide
Butch at Powerline
Bill at the top of Megaslide
Last drop on Pond Brook, NH
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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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