New Hampshire Rivers Management and Protection Program
Souhegan River Nomination
VII. RESOURCE ASSESSMENT
Identify the type and location of any high quality recreational fisheries or areas with such potential which are present in the river (as determined by the NH Fish and Game Department). Also indicate areas that have potential to be significant fisheries.
As discussed earlier, the majority of the fishing in the River is for stocked trout.
Describe any significant recreational boating opportunities which are present on the river, including whether it is used for motorized boating. Indicate if the river is cited as significant for recreational boating in a publication of a national, regional or statewide recreation organization. Refer to the NH River Protection and Energy Development Project to determine the river's significance as a recreational boating river. Also note if boaters are attracted from beyond the local area and if there are areas with potential to be significant boating resources.
The western sections of the Souhegan River from Greenville to Wilton provide whitewater canoeing and kayaking during the spring and other periods of high water. Both the Appalachian Mountain Club's (AMC) River Guide and the New England Whitewater River Guide identify these sections of the River as good intermediate whitewater. The AMC guide classifies the rapids in this section as Class II, III and IV. This stretch of the River is very popular with canoers and kayakers because it provides good training runs, the water is clean, the area is easily accessed and the ice melts early in the spring. The Boston and New Hampshire AMC's and the Merrimack Valley Paddlers organize numerous trips on the Souhegan River every year.
The stretch of the River between Wilton and Milford provides limited opportunities for canoeing and kayaking because the water is generally very low and portages are required around the dams. Below the Route 122 bridge in Amherst, the River is flat and provides excellent opportunities for family canoeing. The water is shallow with a sandy bottom and there are numerous spots to picnic and wade. Below the Seaverns Bridge in Merrimack, the River quickens as it flows through a series of ledges called Indian Ledges. Passage for canoes and kayaks at this point is again limited to periods of high water. The stretch of River below Seaverns Bridge is impassable to watercraft because of Wildcat Falls.
The Souhegan Watershed Association sponsors annual trips on all of the accessible sections of the River. The River is impassable to motor boats except in he western reaches on the impoundments.
List any other recreational areas, facilities, or opportunities or potential for such on the river or in the river corridor (e.g., hiking, camping, picnicking, etc.). Indicate ownership, if known.
In addition to the recreation areas listed below, numerous groups and the SWA have discussed a trail along the entire length of the Souhegan River.
|Taft Land - hiking, nature study||NH Fish & Game||Greenville|
|Town Forest - hiking, nature study||Town of Wilton||Wilton|
|SPNHF Land - hiking, nature study||SPNHF||Wilton|
|Souhegan River Scenic Easement - picnicking, river access||NHDOT||Greenville/Wilton|
|The Horseshoe - swimming, picnicking||private||Wilton|
|Milford Fish Hatchery - hiking, nature study, picnicking||NH Fish & Game||Milford|
|Town Land - hiking, nature study, picnicking||Town of Milford||Milford|
|Keyes Field - field sports, water access, tennis||Town of Milford||Milford|
|Emerson Park - walking, picnicking, summer concerts||Town of Milford||Milford|
|Kaley Park - river access, recreational fields||Town of Milford||Milford|
|Amherst canoe port - river access, swimming||Town of Amherst||Amherst|
|Route 122 Access - river access||Town of Amherst||Amherst|
|Sherburne Site - hiking, nature study||Town of Amherst||Amherst|
|Eighty Acres - hiking, picnicking||Town of Merrimack||Merrimack|
|Turkey Hill Bridge Site - hiking, river access||Town of Merrimack||Merrimack|
List any existing public access sites located along the river. These may be formal or non-formal access points. Include the type of public access (e.g., canoe only), related facilities (e.g., parking), and if known, ownership at each site.
|Location||Type of Access||Related Facilities||Ownership|
|Taft Land, Greenville||canoe||limited parking||NH Fish & Game|
|Captain Clark Bridge, Wilton||canoe||limited parking||NH DOT|
|Green Bridge, Milford||canoe||parking on-street|
|Keyes Field, Milford||canoe||parking, rec. fields||Milford|
|Kaley Park, Milford||canoe||parking||Milford|
|Route 122 Bridge, Amherst||canoe||limited parking||Amherst CC|
|Amherst Canoe Port||canoe||limited parking||Amherst|
|Turkey Hill Bridge, Merrimack||canoe||parking||Merrimack|
|Seaverns Bridge, Merrimack||canoe||limited parking||Merrimack|