< PREVIOUS

Ware River Reach 5

Last Updated: 1/2018

Lower Dam in Ware to River Mouth

Description
         

STATISTICS

Skill Level:            Class 1 and 2
Estimated Time:
   3 hours
Distance:        
      11.6 miles

USGS Map: Palmer. MA
[1]  Veterans Memorial Park - Mile 11.5

Put-In Position: 42-15.45 N 72-14.65 W 
Altitude: 390 feet
Access: 
This is a informal awkward put-in. Park near the gate for Veterans Memorial Park. Walk through some  brush to the river.
Nearest Launch Address:  
36 Monroe St, Ware, MA 01082
Put-In Directions (8.9 miles, 17 minutes):
From the Mass Pike Exit 8, Palmer, MA:
  1. At the end of the ramp, turn left at the stop light.
  2. Head north on Route 32 North/Thorndike Street.
  3. At mile 8.4, at stop light, turn right onto Route 9 East/Main Street in the center of Ware.
  4. At mile 8.6, turn right onto South Street.
  5. At mile 8.8, turn right onto Monroe Street. There is a large catholic church on the corner.
  6. At mile 9.0, park at the end of the street near the back entrance to the Veterans Memorial Park.
Put-In here just outside of the back gate of Veterans Memorial Park.
[4 & 5] Thorndike Dams Portage - Mile 3.1
Take-Out Positions: 42-11.27 N 72-19.51 W
Put-In Position: 42-11.43 N 72-19.99 W
Altitude above upper dam: 360 feet
Altitude below lower dam: 318 feet
Portage Described: 
Paddling between the Upper and Lower Thorndike Dams is a waste of time. There is little to see and no opportunities to easily put-in and take-out. Instead, carry 0.6 miles between dams as follows:
1. Head south on Hill Street 0.1 miles to Church Street.
2. Turn right (west) on Church Street following the side walk 0.45 miles until you reach a playground on your left.
3. Turn left on Main Street crossing over the river about 0.05 miles.
4. Just before the railroad tracks on the right, down river side of the bridge, carry your boat down to the river. There is no clear trail or markings so you will need to be careful and use common sense.
Nearest Launch Address:  
Take-Out: 44 Hill St Thorndike, MA 01079
Put-In: 4021 Main Street, Thorndike, MA 01079
Put-In Directions (8.8 miles, 17 minutes):
From the Mass Pike Exit 8, Palmer, MA:
  1. At the end of the ramp, turn left at the stop light.
  2. Head north on Route 32 North/Thorndike Street.
  3. At mile 8.4, at stop light, turn right onto Route 9 East/Main Street in the center of Ware.
  4. At mile 8.6, turn left onto Church Street.
  5. At mile 8.8, turn right onto Park Street.
  6. Park in the Church parking lot and walk in to Grenville Park.
A close up of the 0.6 mile Portage
Take-Out river right above barrier.  Follow the trail.
Follow this trail to Hill Street.
Most of the portage is along Church Street.
Turn left at the park onto Main Street.
Put-In here just after crossing the river near the railroad tracks.
[2] ​Route 32 Bridge on Palmer Road in Ware - Mile 8.4
Positions: 42-14.34 N 72-17.15 W
Altitude: 376 feet
Access: 
Turn onto Old Belchertown Road and park on the side of the road. Follow an easy trail to river across from a couple of homes.
Nearest Launch Address:  
368 Palmer Road, Ware, MA 01089 - Route 32
Just south of Gibbs Crossing (Walmart)
Put-In Directions (5.6 miles, 9 minutes):
From the Mass Pike Exit 8, Palmer, MA:
  1. At the end of the ramp, turn left at the stop light.
  2. Head north on Route 32 North/Thorndike Street.
  3. At mile 5.6, turn left onto Old Belchertown Road.
  4. ​Park on the riverside of the road near the corner.
Route 32 bridge over the river.
The corner of Old Belchertown Road.
Park roadside and take trail to the river.
[3] Summer Street Bridge - Mile 4.5
Positions: 42-12.28 N 72-19.15 W​
Altitude: 376 feet
Access: 
There is a small roadside parking pull-over for one vehicle.  Follow the small steep trail on down river side.
Nearest Launch Address:  
2 Emery Street, Palmer, MA 01069
Put-In Directions (2.9 miles, 6 minutes):
From the Mass Pike Exit 8, Palmer, MA:
  1. At the end of the ramp, turn left at the stop light.
  2. Head north on Route 32 North/Thorndike Street.
  3. At mile 1.5, turn slight left onto Stimson Street.
  4. At mile 2.7, turn left onto Gates Street.
  5. Immediately turn right onto River Street then left onto Summer Street.  Cross over the river.
  6. At mile 2.9, arrive at launch area near the corner of Emery Street.
A view of the corner of Emery and Summer Streets.
Pull over and launch area opposite the corner above.
[6] Route 181 Bridge - Mile 1.25
Positions: 42-11.52 N 72-20.98 W​
Altitude: 376 feet
Access: 
Access is at the Sewer Pump Station next to bridge over the river.  This is across the road from Burgundy Brook Farm
Address: 3092 Palmer St, Palmer, MA 01069
Hours: Tue - Sun 7AM–2PM
Phone: (413) 289-6359
Website: burgundybrook.com
Nearest Launch Address:  
3098 Sykes Street, Palmer, MA 01069
Put-In Directions (2.9 miles, 6 minutes):
From the Mass Pike Exit 8, Palmer, MA:
  1. At the end of the ramp, turn right at the stop light.
  2. Immediately after the gas station, turn right onto Lawrence Street.
  3. At mile 0.3, turn left onto Shearer Street.
  4. At mile 1.0, turn right onto Route181 North/North Main Street.
  5. At mile 3.0, pass over the river.  Pull into the Sewer Pumping station immediately after the river bridge on your right.
The sewer pumping station.
Grassy area to launch and recovery area.
Burgundy Brook Farm
A good place for breakfast or lunch.
[7] Bridge Street Bridge Take-Out Put-In - Mile 0.0
Positions: 42-10.86 N 72-21.98 W​
Altitude: 376 feet
Access: 
Next to the white two-family house near the bridge.  The land toward the river from the fence is public.  The bank is steep!  Use caution as there is a swift current at the launch.  There is no place to park at site.  Unload on sidewalk and find road side parking nearby.  The land toward the river from the fence is public.  Climb over the railing and down the bank is steep!  Use caution as there is a swift current at the launch.
Nearest Launch Address:  
2033 Bridge Street, Three Rivers, MA 01080
Put-In Directions (3.1 miles, 7 minutes):
From the Mass Pike Exit 8, Palmer, MA:
  1. At the end of the ramp, turn right at the stop light.
  2. Almost immediately just past the gas station, turn right onto Lawrence Street.
  3. At mile 0.4, turn left onto Shearer Street.
  4. At mile 1.1, turn right onto Route 181 North/North Main Street.
  5. At mile 1.8, turn left onto Palmer Road.  Cross over the Quaboag River,
  6. At mile 2.9, turn right onto Bridge Street
  7. At mile 3.1, arrive at put-in.
A view of public access from end of bridge.
This is a difficult take-out because of the rapids where rivers come together.