Cold River

Unspecified • 7.5 mi • 0 ft

This eTrail includes two sections of New Hampshire's Cold River: South Acworth to Vilas Pool and Alstead to Drewsville. The Cold is a small, snappy stream that offers nearly continuous current, pleasant scenery, fallen trees, and barbed wire. In low water the pace is relatively slow, while in medium to high levels the Cold offers a nonstop run. The Cold is an excellent place for advanced beginners to practice, because while none of the rapids is extremely difficult, they do require a certain finesse to negotiate gracefully. The valley is alternately attractive and civilized, and the water is polluted only by furry beasties and cows. When canoeable—generally only in the spring—the water temperature lives up to its name. A road passes alongside almost the entire route, so starts and stops are flexible. Trip B may be made in conjunction with the previous one or as a separate trip. Just below the dam on Vilas Pool, immediately after a right turn, there is another dam. This dam is broken and may be runnable depending on the water level and your ability. Look it over and decide for yourself. Since you have to portage the dam at Vilas Pool, you might as well carry down to Alstead if you want to continue on from the upper part (trip A). Because trip B is only 2.0 miles long, it presents a good opportunity for new paddlers to practice without having to tackle the longer upper section of the river. This section of the river is similar to the preceding section, and, although the rapids diminish somewhat, the swift current continues. The river is still narrow and fallen trees can aggravate the paddler and slow the trip drastically. Approach each blind curve cautiously, looking for obstacles. Beyond the trees there are no major difficulties—except for the takeout.
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Activity Type: Whitewater Paddling
Nearby City: South Acworth
Length: 7.5 total miles
Elevation Loss: Minimal
Gradient: Unspecified
Skill Level: Class II
Local Contacts: Gauge location and water level information is provided in the eTrail if available.
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