Best Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing in Massachusetts

This list represents the most popular whitewater kayaking & canoeing in Massachusetts. Use this list to plan your next Massachusetts whitewater kayaking & canoeing trip. Select a state and/or activity below to find even more top trails.

Learn more about Top Trails

#1. Deerfield River - Fife Brook Section: Fife Brook Dam to Zoar Gap


From Fife Brook Dam in Florida, Massachusetts, to the Number 4 dam in Buckland, the Deerfield River flows unimpeded for 17.0 miles. The longest stretch without a dam on the main river, this run is als…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
Florida, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 5 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#2. Millers River


This eTrail includes two sections of Massachusetts' Millers River: South Royalston to Athol and Erving to Millers Falls. The Upper Millers (trip A) run starts in South Royalston, just a mile below the…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
South Royalston, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 13.5 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#3. Hubbard Brook: Granville State Forest to Barkhamsted Reservoir


Hubbard Brook is a small, steep stream that runs through Granville State Forest in Massachusetts just north of the border with Connecticut. It is naturally flowing, so you must catch it immediately af…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
Tolland, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 2.75 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#4. Farmington River: Otis Bridge (MA) to Tariffville Gorge (CT)


This eTrail includes two sections of Massachusetts' Farmington River (Otis Bridge to Route 8 and Route 8 to New Boston) and Connecticut's Tariffville Gorge section from Route 189 to Route 187. Compare…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
Cold Spring, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 6.9 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#5. Concord River: Bradford Industries to Merrimack River


This run epitomizes urban paddling and is the closest class III–IV whitewater to Boston. The river is ledgy, with lots of man-made debris and a nasty breached dam at the end. There are three distinct…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
Concord, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 1.5 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#6. Quaboag River: Warren to Route 67


The Quaboag is full of variety—from abrupt drops to long rapids with wave trains to a mini-gorge. Medium-sized, with rapids of sufficient power to demand great respect, the Quaboag holds its water wel…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
Warren, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 5.5 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#7. Cold River: Dead Man's Curve to Deerfield River


You’re lucky to run the Cold when it’s completely free of ice, since most of its season is in the late winter or early spring just as the snow begins melting. It’s not unusual for it to run briefly ju…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
Zoar, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 4.25 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#8. Chickley River: Route 8A to Deerfield River


The Chickley runs through the rural landscape of Hawley, Massachusetts. Cow pastures, sugarbushes, and old mill sites are common along the river that takes its name from the Reverend John Checkley, an…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
West Hawley, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 4.4 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#9. Cohasset: Border Street


About half an hour south of Boston is an interesting tidal rip known to boaters in the area simply as “Cohasset.” This short class II drop has amused summertime whitewater paddlers in and around Bosto…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
Cohasset, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 0.05 mile
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#10. Housatonic River: Division Street to Brookside Road


This is a fun stretch of river with some runs of easy rapids and riffles between long reaches of flatwater that drift through beautiful countryside. For the most comfortable passage, the depth gauge u…
From the guidebook "Discover the Berkshires of Massachusetts"
Great Barrington, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 6.1 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#11. North Branch of the Westfield River: Cummington to Huntington


This trip on the North Branch is probably one of the most pleasant to be experienced. Moderate rapids, delightful scenery, and an isolated stretch of river all greet the paddler on a crisp spring morn…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
Cummington, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 21.6 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#12. Hoosic River: Ashton Avenue to Simonds Road


Short but sweet with a few reaches of slow water and the rest a whitewater treat. The Hoosic River is a shallow, energetic stream that is best run in spring or at other times when the water is up. T…
From the guidebook "Discover the Berkshires of Massachusetts"
North Adams, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 2.9 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#13. Deerfield River - Monroe Bridge Dryway: Monroe Bridge to Dunbar Brook Picnic Area


The Monroe Bridge Dryway is one of the great relicensing success stories of New England. Dewatered except for occasional spillage until 1991, the Dryway now has a schedule of 32 days each season when…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
Monroe Bridge, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 3 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#14. Pelham Brook: Rowe Center to Deerfield River


This small stream follows a country road through Rowe, Massachusetts, and is fed by Pelham Pond and a smaller millpond in the center of Rowe. The run itself is only 3.25 miles long from the put-in jus…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
Rowe, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 3.25 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#15. Dunbar Brook: South Road to Dunbar Brook Trailhead


Dunbar Brook is one of the narrowest, steepest, most extreme creeks in the Deerfield River’s watershed. For it to be runnable, you need lots of rain or snowmelt over a short period of time, and a smal…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
Monroe Bridge, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 3 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#16. West Branch of the Westfield River: Bancroft to Huntington


This eTrail includes two sections of Massachusetts' Westfield River - West Branch: Bancroft to Chester and Chester to Huntington. If the rocks in the river are covered at Bancroft, expect a roller-coa…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
Bancroft, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 13.5 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#17. Deerfield River - #2 Section: Wilcox Hollow to Stillwater Bridge


Number 2 is the first dam on the Deerfield counting up from the Connecticut River. Number 1 was planned but never built, and it is highly unlikely it ever will be. The river below Number 2 dam is remo…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
Shelburne Falls, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 7 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#18. Middle Branch of the Westfield River: River Road to Littleville Dam


When the water is up, the Middle Branch offers a fast, sassy romp that’ll challenge open boaters and even give closed boats a good time. Continuous rapids with rocks and haystacks, a good gradient, an…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
Dayville, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 7 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books

#19. North River: Veratec Dam to Deerfield River


The lower North is similar in difficulty to the Chickley except that it is larger, gathering inflows from several streams along its path. It is also ledgier, with a few rapids holding interesting hydr…
From the guidebook "Classic Northeastern Whitewater Guide"
Shattuckville, MA - Whitewater Kayaking & Canoeing - 2 miles
Published by Appalachian Mountain Club Books