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West River in Vermont

Trip Overview

West River (below Townsend Dam)
I paddled the West River (VT) yesterday from a put in on state forest road which is basically a mile downstream from the broken down covered bridge to the ball fields just outside Brattelboro on Rt 30. Distance about 16 mile. This is below the Townsend dam and the water did not start flowing till 1230 or so. It took us 4 hours.

The rapids really do not start till after Radway Hill Road Bridge which is off of Rt 30 near a flea market or fairgrounds. There is a put in on the far side of the bridge. Were I to do this run again this is where I would start from, as the river is quick water to class one above. From the bridge it is 11 miles to the ball fields.

The best rapid is immediately after the confluence of the Rock River and the West River - a bouncy wave train boasting 5 to six foot waves for 75 yards. There was nothing worse than class 2 + rapids on this trip and it reminded me a little of the Housatonic River covered bridge section.

We used LL coupe sit-on-tops which were great for navigating the flats which can be long. The weather was beautiful and we only saw one other group of kayakers making it a great place to go to avoid the chaos of the West Fest.


Radway Hill Road bridge state forest road in or near Jamaica, VT
Take out ball fields just on Rt 30 just outside of Brattelboro proper
  • Skill Level: Intermediate
  • Water Type: River/Creek (Up to Class II)
  • Group Rates: No

Locations on this Trip