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South Branch Raritan River in New Jersey

Trip Overview

We paddled the section between Hoffman Crossing Road and the city park in High Bridge, NJ, about 4 miles.

According to Ed Gertler's "Garden State Canoeing" this section requires about 6.5 feet on the High Bridge Gauge (check USGS Website) and he is right. We had only 6.2 feet on the gauge and our 11' kayaks scraped bottom a lot.

Luckily, this level was sufficient for fun, in spite of pushing ourselves over obstacles in some of the shallower rock gardens. At 6.5 feet I think this section would rate about 2.5-3.0 for difficulty, but there is ample opportunity to escape the river and a road parallels the entire course.

I'm looking forward to a big summer rain, look for my next report.


Very limited parking at some access points, plenty at others.

Clinton is a tourist attractions with lots of shops, restaurants, etc.


No, none that we encountered.


Basically, this section of the river is at I-78 and NJSR 31; county route 513 N from Clinton is the main access.

  • Duration: Day Trip
  • Sport/Activity: Kayaking
  • Skill Level: Intermediate
  • Water Type: River/Creek (Up to Class II)
  • Group Rates: No

Locations on this Trip