Broad Brook - Above Powerlines to Lower Ashuelot

Broad Brook, New Hampshire, US


Above Powerlines to Lower Ashuelot

Usual Difficulty IV+ (for normal flows)
Length 1 Miles
Avg. Gradient 200 fpm
Max Gradient 200 fpm

The Put-in/Hike-in the easy way

The Put-in/Hike-in the easy way
Photo of Driving: Rich mathews Paddlers:Libby Klein and Roger Hodson by Nate Lesch-Huie taken 1/06 @ 2'

Gauge Information

Name Range Difficulty Updated Level
usgs-01161000 6.00 - 9.00 ft IV+ 00h26m 4.56 ft (too low)

River Description

This is the hidden gem of southern NH. Although it is a very short run, the quality of rapids and natural scenery are comparable to that of the boulder-strewn White Mountain creeks. When arriving at the put-in you will be immediately confronted with what this creek has to offer, looking up at the Fungi Express rapid while getting changed and ready to hike-in will get you excited for what's in store. This run could be considered an intro to creeking run but also has one rapid that most people walk. Three out of the four rapids have multiple lines to run depending on the level, where the difficulty can be significantly increased.

Use the directions on AW to get yourself to the Lower Ashuelot putin on 119. From the covered bridge putin for the Lower Ash, drive towards Hinsdale about 1-2 miles, see Broad Brook Road on your right side and go up Broad Brook road for about 1/2 mile. Park on the river-left side in small pull-off out of the way of the dumpster. Hike from here upstream on the river-left side for about 20 minutes to just above the power lines and cut in just above Percolator. (There is a trail that goes up the river right side which is much easier, but to access it you walk up someone's driveway. The locals here have always been nice to me but I would certainly ask if it's ok to cross their land to get to the trail.)
To get to the takeout, drive out Broad Brook Road to 119, take a right, go to the bottom of the hill, see Broad Brook coming in on your right and take the next left across the bridge that goes to the dam. Park in the far back parking lot as far out of the way as you can. You can also park at the takeout for the lower Ash and continue on down and run the dams in your creek boat if you want.

StreamTeam Status: Not Verified
Last Updated: 2010-10-27 09:33:20


Rapid Summary

Mile Rapid Name Class Features (Legend)
0.0The PercolatorIV+Photo
0.4The Fungi ExpressIVPhoto
0.8The Gangler5.0Photo

Rapid Descriptions

The Percolator (Class IV+)

Perfect set-up for the river left line

Perfect set-up for the river left line
Photo of Tony Vulcano by Nate Lesch-Huie taken 2/06 @ 1.75'

This rapid is one of the most beutiful ones on the river. I usually put-in a 100 yards or so above this rapid and then eddy out river right to pick my line. Formed by a couple large mossy boulders there are a couple lines depending on the level. The river left slot line is good at all levels. Simply line up at the top have a little bit of right angle at the bottom and prepare to go deep in the hole/percolate. The river right line which is considerably harder can be run from 1.75' and up. This requires a very well placed sliding rock boof where you land in between two rocks at the bottom and then paddle out the left slot. After this is a bit of boogie for about a 1/4 mile then a short section of flat water, After the flat water is a log that can be snuck around by going as far river left as possible. The next rapid Fungi Express comes within the next 100 yards, scout from river right.

The Fungi Express (Class IV, Mile 0.4)

Fungi Express boof.

Fungi Express boof.
Photo of Gabe Dawson by Nate Lesch-Huie taken 11/04 @ 1'

This is a wide boulder strewn area but the rapid takes place on river right. Its best to eddy our river left just above where the river goes off to the right. Then you can start heading river right and eddy out in a small eddy on river right. From here you can see the line very well. The key to this rapid is to drive a little bit right just before the boof as it has a tendency to carry you left into nasty rocks, then plant a big boof and continue down and eddy out immediatley left. By eddying out left you set yourself up for the cleanest line down through the runout. From there it is a cool ferry/attainment across the front of a big boulder then continue down the right side making sure to boof the man made ledge hole under the bridge. The next couple 100 yards are fun boogie. When you see a nice little cabin on the right side start thinking about getting out on the left and scouting the next rapid, potential.

Potential (Class IV+, Mile 0.7)

Libby Klein Shows her Potential

Libby Klein Shows her Potential
Photo of Libby Klein by Nate Lesch-Huie taken 1/06 @ 2'

This is a long multi stage drop. Begin by staying river left, punching a couple holes and passing a couple boulders in the river center, then drive back river right. At 2' and above you can stay left through the whole rapid running a slot on the left as oppose to driving right. After driving right prepare to punch a good size ledge then staying right to avoid getting pushed into a boulder spike type thing and eddy out immediatley right. There will be one more little two stage drop that is boofed directly off the center and then immedialtey eddying out on the left. The gangler lurks directly below.

The Gangler (Class 5.0, Mile 0.8)

On-line in The Gangler

On-line in The Gangler
Photo of Brad Croteau by Nate Lesch-Huie taken 11/04 @ 1'

The gangler is the hardest rapid on the run. At 2.5' and below there are two lines, one river right and one river left. Neither line are particularly good looking and you must be willing to take a bit of a hit when running them. The right line requires setting up river center then driving as far right as you can and boofing with a big left boof off the corner of a boulder. The landing sometimes requires a little finagling through a slot. The left line has a harder lead in and requires precise landing between two rocks that offer pin potential. At 3' and above you could probably boof directly off the center over a big hole. From there down to the Ashuelot its mostly class 3 boogie. Have fun and as always use your own good judgement.

User Comments

Users can submit comments.
August 30 2011 (2396 days ago)
David SuDetails
The easiest walk is to take the old Broad Brook Road across the pictured bridge, up 100 yards to
the power line easement, then turn right and take the trail that winds beneath the power lines to
the riverside. I enjoy walking up to do Percolator; another not-hard 100 yards towards the beaver
dam and old dam to get all the whitewater in as a warm-up and scout.

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