Adirondacks State Park
Flows and bays extending out in every direction invite exploration and offer refuge on windy days. Many hiking trails originating on the lake shore lead to remote ponds and overlooks on mountain tops. There are 46 designate campsites on the lake.
Cranberry Lake Outlet
A brief section of Class II rapids can be avoided by starting 1.8 miles downstream. The rest of the river is a flatwater winding through Chaumont Swamp on its way to the Newton Falls reservoir.
Lower Raquette River
Closer to its confluence with the St. Lawrence River are 14.5 miles between Raymondville to Raquette River Village, which can be paddled when water levels are adequate. There are several sets of rapids which can be run or carried around.
North Branch Grass River
This 16.5 mile paddle is a nice mix of rapids and flatwater. What starts as a meandering river in a marsh quickly changes to Class II rapids. Class IV rapids and a moderately sized double hydraulic are met before reaching the 50-foot Harper Falls, where a carry is required.
This 27 mile stretch of the Raquette is the setting of the largest inland hydroelectric installation in New York. Niagara Mohawk maintains carry routes between reservoirs, as well as picnic areas, boat ramps, beaches and campgrounds. Below these reservoirs, travel on the river continues with a series of small reservoirs at Hannawa, Potsdam, Norwood and Norfolk.
The 17 mile stretch from Piercefield to Carry Falls Reservoir offers the Raquette's most exciting whitewater. Starting at the dam near Piercefield, the river winds north, through a series of rapids and over two waterfalls. State land borders most of this area and carry trails skirt some of the harder sections. Water level is critical and it can fluctuate due to dam releases.
South Branch Grass River
This is is a 16.4 mile round trip paddle, first down, then upstream The first 1.2 miles, which consist of Class IV rapids can be avoided by carrying one mile on the roadbed of the old Grasse River Railroad along the right bank. The rest of this scenic corridor is a flatwater cruise. Wildlife sightings may be frequent in this remote area.
Lampson Falls Area
This spectacular stretch of the Grass accommodates a range of paddling skills. The first 4. 5 miles is winding flatwater, then, at the 40-foot Lampson Falls, the river abruptly changes. Over the next seven miles the river drops 220 feet over nine dramatic cascades and flumes rated up to Class V. To follow is a speedy 4 miles of almost continuous Class II rapids. Only experts should try the lower section.
This river is a study in contrasts. The lower six miles this technical Class III rapids while the upper 12 miles is a quiet Class I, with some riffles and two short carries. The corridor is lined with balsam fir and marsh.
Pond-hop among the many small lakes or paddle 8.5 miles down through the Massawepie Mire and Grass River Flow. Glaciers formed this unique area into a scenic wonderland of kettle ponds eskers and a 900-acre peatland with the 40-foot Burnt Rock in the midst of it all. The area is open to the public before June 1 and after September 1.
Don't overlook the hiking trails around Cranberry Lake.
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication