Canoeing & Kayaking

Wild & Scenic Farmington River

Experience canoeing or kayaking along the upper section of the wild and scenic Farmington River.

View River Access Points >


Distance: 8 miles

Time: 2.5-3 hours

Towns: Colebrook, Hartland, Barkhamsted, New Hartford

Tributaries: Sandy Brook, Mad River, Still River, Morgan Brook, East Branch
of Farmington River

USGS Maps: Tolland Center, Winsted, New Hartford, Collinsville

Access Points: 5-13

Difficulty: Class I-II

PUT-IN : Access Point 5, Below Goodwin Dam, Hartland, CT - View Map

Directions : From the center of Riverton, cross the bridge, turn left and go east on Rt. 20 for .6 miles. Take a left onto Hogback Road and follow for 1 mile. Just past the gravel excavation site on your right, you will come to a small turnout on your left marked by a large, unusual boulder with trees growing from it.

TAKE-OUT : Access Point 13, Satan’s Kingdom State Recreation Area, New Hartford, CT - View Map

Directions : Travel 1.8 miles east of New Hartford center on Rt. 44, or 2.4 miles west of the jct. Rt. 44/179 in Canton. You will see a sign for Satan’s Kingdom State Recreation Area on the east side of the highway. This state owned area is the site of a very active tubing concession that runs from approximately mid May to early September. Parking is available for boaters.


Access Point 6, Parking lot, Rt.20, Riverton, CT - View Map

Directions: In Riverton you will find a parking lot on Rt.20 across from the Old Hitchcock Chair Factory Store, which is now called Riverton Self Storage.

Access Point 7, Pipeline Crossing, West River Road, Barkhamsted, CT - View Map

Directions: On West River Road 0.4 miles south of its junction with Rt.20 in Riverton or 3.6 miles north of its junction with Rt.181 in Pleasant Valley. Parking is available on either side of the road.

Access Point 8, Above High Bank Rapid, West River Road, Barkhamsted, CT - View Map

Directions:Travel 2.6 miles south from Rt.20 bridge in Riverton or 1.4 miles north from Rt.181 in Pleasant Valley. Parking is available next to the river.

Access Point 9, Peoples State Forest, Barkhamsted, CT - View Map

Directions: Travel on East River Road 3.0 mile south from Rt.20 bridge in Riverton or 1.0 mile north from Rt.181 bridge in Pleasant Valley to the entrance of Peoples State Forest on the west side of the road. Ample parking and river access are available.

Access Point 10, Rt.181/318 Bridge, Pleasant Valley, CT - View Map

Directions: Traveling west on Rt.44 for 1.5 miles north of junction Rt.44/219 in New Hartford, take a right on Rt.181. Bridge is at the junction Rt.181/318. Parking is available on the southeast corner of the bridge on river left.

Access Point 11, Lake McDonough, Barkhamsted, CT (formerly Compensating Reservoir) - View Map

NOTE: there is a small fee required to obtain a day boat permit

Directions: From Pleasant Valley follow Rt.318 east to Rt.219 passing of the Saville Dam. At junction Rt.318/219 turn right onto Rt.219. The entrance is in 0.4 miles on the right. From New Hartford center take Rt.44 east to Rt.219, then go north 3.3 miles on Rt.219. Entrance is on the left.

Access Point 12, Callahan Memorial Park, New Hartford, CT - View Map

Directions: At junction Rt.219/44, take Rt.219 north over the river. Just after the bridge, turn right onto Cottage Street and right again into Callahan Memorial Park. Tennis, basketball, barbecue, and picnic tables are available. There is no long term parking available.


The recommended water flow levels per cubic feet per second are:

Fishing - Optimum 150-350 cfs (minimum 100 cfs)

Scenic Enjoyment - Optimimum 240-540 cfs

Tubing - Optimum - 350-450 cfs (minimum 200 cfs)

Downriver Canoeing - Optimum - 360-980 cfs (minimum 250 cfs)

Kayak Play Boating - Optimum - 540-980 cfs (minimum 250 cfs)