Gauge Info: USGS Flow: 3300 cfs; USGS Station: East Georgia Lamoille
[A comment about the Browns River flow... The Lower Lamoille cfs flow figure on the East Georgia gauge can be misleading for this river. However, a more complete estimate can be had by looking at the level of change per hour. If the Lamoille is climbing the Browns will likely be proportionately higher and vice-versa if the Lamoille gauge is dropping it will likely be proportionately lower.]
On Apr 11, 2012 we put in at the excellent parking area just south of Westford Village Green by the Rt. 128 bridge. The flow was medium-low. Some of the group eddied out (river left) to shore scout at the dam after passing under the covered bridge in Westford Village. All but one paddler then picked a line from river-right to left around the lead-in ledge pourovers to negotiate the slide on far river-left at the collapsed dam. A few rolls and braces were required by the tilted ledge at the foot of the tongue but others thumbed their noses as they paddled away from the large toilet bowl swirl river-center at the base of the broken-up dam.
The next feature, sometimes referred to as S-turn Rapid, is the liveliest rapid on the run. There are good eddies for practice throughout. The main flow takes aim at a large rock river-center if you are too passive with your paddle through this section. As flow increases there also is a diagonal wave mid-way and a pillow forms hiding the rock. The last road access parallels on river-right just after this rapid.
Around a bend and a few hundred yards is the next feature, a river-wide 3' ledge drop (scout on river left). Everyone cleanly ran left of the large rock (river center) . A short distance later, the group again choose center lines between a rock and island ledge in the 2-step, slide-drop section of this 3' drop. There were a few light scrapping sounds through the shallower section that followed but it was all reasonably fluid on this day.
The final double-island feature came up after 1-1/2 mile of flat water ending with a fun rock-garden lead-in rapid. Some river scouted from an eddy overlooking the river-right rocky slide, and then everyone elected to bounce down through that option rather than paddle either of the river left channel alternatives.
The Rt 128 take-out bridge came into view, after another 3/4 mile section of flat water. Take-out is on either side at the bridge (or after on river left 40 yards downstream). The takes out options are not the friendliest but access to the road-side parking area is good. Other options for take out are river-right just after the next bridge on McNall Rd. (+1-mile) or to the Lower Lamoille put-in (+ 2.2-mile) or the Lamoille take-out (+6-mile - see Lower Lamoille).
This run correlates fairly well with the Lower lamoille gauge. Low runnable is about 1000cfs on the Lower Lamoille at this level it is a scratchy class II. We ran it today at around 4000cfs on the Lower Lamoille and at this level it had several class III sections.
A few experienced paddlers ran this section last Fall. I was universally agreed that this is more significant than class II. Class III is probably more appropriate.
This run correlates fairly well with the Lower Lamoille gauge. Low runnable is about 1000cfs on the Lower Lamoille; at this level it is a scratchy class II. We ran it today at around 4000cfs on the Lower Lamoille and at this level it had several class III sections.
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The Vermont Supreme Court decided today that whitewater boaters have the right to paddle on the Green River. The Supreme Court affirmed the decision by the Environmental Division of the Superior Court that required the hydropower project on the Green River in Morrisville to provide three annual scheduled releases. This is a precedent setting decision because it establishes that whitewater boating is a designated and existing use protected under the Clean Water Act, that scheduled releases are necessary to protect that use, and that Vermont ANR failed to meet its burden to show that providing scheduled release would result in a lowering of water quality.
The Vermont Superior Court sided with American Whitewater in a long-running dispute with the state over whitewater boating on the Green River in Morrisville. The Court overturned state restrictions that would have eliminated any meaningful opportunity for boaters to enjoy this extraordinary river and required scheduled releases in a ground breaking decision.
In response to of the state’s draft basin plan for southern Vermont, American Whitewater and scores of boaters pressed the state to support the expansion of releases on the West River. Restrictions by the Corps of Engineers and Agency of Natural Resources have led to the elimination of nearly all scheduled boating opportunities on the West River over the past two decades, eliminating recreation opportunity and hurting the local economy. AW and its partners have been working to restore these releases.
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.
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