Esopus Creek, New York, US
|Usual Difficulty||II-III (for normal flows)|
|ESOPUS CREEK AT COLDBROOK NY|
|usgs-01362500||5.00 - 8.00 ft||II-III||01h56m||4.25 ft (too low)|
The portal in Allaben is where water from the Schoharie Reservoir is piped into the Esopus to transport to the Ashokan Reservoir. About 1/2 mile down from this put-in is a left-hand turn with many trees along the right bank. These trees claimed the life of a private tuber and a kayaker in the summer of 2002. They are easily avoidable but one must be aware of this danger.
The tubing companies and most locals put in at the fishing access next to the cemetary that one passes on the way to the portal. Immediately downstream of the cemetery put-in there is a large strainer on river left and, as of September 2015, the river right channel is blocked by two fallen trees. A 14-year-old tuber died after becoming trapped under a strainer here over labor day weekend 2015. The strainers can be avoided via a small boatable channel by the island river center.
From the cemetary access you get right into the first playspot called "Cartwheel Hole" which is a double squirtline separated by a large boulder in the center of the river. Mystery moves have been gotten here by squirt boaters between 5.5 and 6 ft.
From here it's more of a technical class II+ with some surf-on-the-fly waves and squirt-lines
always different depending on levels.
At the junction of the woodland valley stream is the class III "Tenderizer" hole (rarely playable but fun to try), the railroad wave (class II surf), and then Railroad Rapid (III) which is the site of the slalom races held here. Many boaters get out here, about 3 miles down from the portal. The next significant rapids occur as you enter Phoenecia.
After the Phoenecia bridge, the third bridge from the put-in, is Elmer's Bend, a class III+ rapid with many different characteristics depending in the level. If you scout on the fly I recommend going right of the predominant boulder in the center, and then either left to right thru the rock garden or straight thru river right and over a little drop. This drop-route is better at higher levels. There is a take-out a little ways below Elmer's, or continue on to the parking area on Rte. 28 near the Catskill Corners Kaleidoscope. Some boaters, especially canoists, may opt to continue another 5 miles to Boiceville although there are considerably more flat sections.
Catskills Area Reaches
|Mile||Rapid Name||Class||Features (Legend)|
|1.0||River Left Strainer||N/A|
|5.4||Anglers' Parking Takeout||N/A|
This is an alternative put-in 1mile downstream of the portal with good parking and river access. It avoids some of the dangerous strainers on the early section.
Dangerous pile of logs forms a large strainer on river left after the cemetery put-in. The fastest current sweeps under it.
Alternative takeout on Route 40 (Mt-Tremper-Phoenicia Rd) that adds 1mile to the run. There is space for four or five vehicles in the anglers' parking here.