Furnace Brook is a little paddled gem. It needs a lot of water, and there is no gauge, which make it a gamble, but its location between Middlebury and the Big Branch should ensure that it is paddled fairly frequently. From the putin, about a mile of easy water leads you under the first road bridge. Downed trees are fairly common, but at the time of writing, all were obvious, and none blocked anything oher than flatwater. The first major rapid is a biggie - Caffee falls. Inspect on the right. This is a beautiful large three stage fall. After this falls, the river is continuous class 4, with several class 5's thrown in. Long continous boulder rapids, and many great boofs make this a classic run. There is one more rapid, just under the takeout bridge; run this, and walk back to the car on river right. Putin: From the takeout, continue on Furnace Rd. You wil cross the river once, and just after this, there is a large pull-off on a corner. This is the most convenient putin, although there are others which minimize the easy water. Takeout: From Pittsford, take Furnace Road North from Rte. 7. This turn is just before the Rte. 7 bridge if you are heading South. The road goes for a couple of kms before making a right turn. Follow for a couple of 100m until you cross the river. This is the takeout. There is room to park one vehicle at the bridge, and a couple of small pull-offs farther up the hill. Other Nearby Runs: The Big Branch and Clarendon Gorge are pretty close by.
6 years ago
by Scott Gilbert
7 years ago
by Mark Lacroix
No gauge; check out the river from the Rte. 7 bridge. You need a lot of water, but not too much. Should be able to bounce down the wide bits without too much pain to make the main section fun.
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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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