Mad River, New Hampshire, US
|Usual Difficulty||III (for normal flows)|
|Avg. Gradient||73 fpm|
|Max Gradient||73 fpm|
|BAKER RIVER NEAR RUMNEY, NH|
|usgs-01076000||900 - 2500 cfs||III||00h33m||40.5 cfs (too low)|
This is a nice but short pool and drop river. There are many 2 and 3 foot ledge drops amongst large granite boulders through a steep sided gorge. At low levels it can be a little scratchy at the begining and the end. There is not much playing to be had on this river section but it is a good place to learn skills for steep creaking. If the dam is spilling water put in at the first location by the dam. Walk down a steep embankment on river left downstream from the bridge. This will give you access to two warm up rapids (Upper and Lower White Pine rapid), with some surfing waves to play in. If the water is marginal or being bypassed by the hydro station it will be necessary to put in 1/4 mile further downstream.
Put in elevation........633' Take out elevation......560' Total drop..............73' Average drop/mile.......73' Distance................1.0 mile River width average.....50' River geology...........granite ledge, Large boulders, steep sided gorge River water quality.....Good to excellent, clarity excellent. Scenery.................An isolated steep gorge next to NH route 49 and Campton village, but all are out of sight once you enter the gorge. Wildlife................Occasional Moose, deer, hawks.
Interstate 93 north to exit 28.
Take a right at exit on NH 49 east approximately 1.5 miles.
Take a right (south) on NH 175 at the light.
Just after the bridge take a left and park close to the dam.
If the water is too low in this section, continue 1/4 mile to a small pull off where the river is close to the road on the right.
Head back to NH 49.
Take a left (west) at the light back towards Interstate 93
1 mile take a left at the Handyman True Value Hardeware store.
50 yards take a left and park behind the Embroidery factory building just before you enter the trailer park
The correlation gauge is located in a nearby but similar drainage. The 75th percentile has been used to estimate runnable flows. If you run this section please leave a comment with the level and any observations or reccomendations.
|Mile||Rapid Name||Class||Features (Legend)|
|0.0||Map of the Mid Pemi region|
Upper and lower Big Pine rapeds are straight forward easy drops. At the lower levels, such as when the water is diverted around these rapids, they can be quit boney. Rapid is named for a large tall white pine tree on river left.
As soon as you turn right away from NH rte 175 the Mad enters the gorge section. You will immediately start encountering several ledge drops spaced only a dozen or so yards apart. One of the major ones is a couple drops downstream of an old metal discharge culvert at a cliff overhang on river left. The drop is somewhat blinded by large boulders but the river right side has a clear path. Drop is named for the Mad River Tavern which is on river right (out of sight) on top of the gorge on NH rte 49.
Nice 3 foot ledge drop great for learning boofing manuevers. Left side is more vertical and has a fairly mean hole in it at higher levels. Feature is named after Sunset Hill on river right above the gorge.
As the river slows down to a few ripples look for an easy exit over the loose gravel and boulders on the river right bank. The takeout from the road is located behind A&H Aoutomotive. From exit 28 turn right on the road between A&H and the Handyman Hardware store. Just past the harware store take a left at the Embroidery factory and park in the roadside clearings by the factory. You should take a walk into the woods to the river to try and get visual marker so you can recognize the takeout from riverside.