Hoosic River Reach 11

Last Updated: 5/2018
       Skill Level:            Class 1 
       Estimated Time:    2 hours
       Distance:               5.2 miles
       USGS Map: Eagle Bridge, NY and Schaghticoke, NY
Buskirk Covered Bridge to Johnsonville Dam
        ​This reach of the river has a very slow current most of the year.  Expect it to be lake-like.  The shore is mostly wooded with occasional view of farm land and very few homes until your approach the dam.  There are wetlands that border the river so expect a lot of wildlife associated with this section.

Mile 16.4 to 13.3 Take-Out - There can be extensive weed growth.  It is best to travel in the main current where there are no weeds.

Mile 13.6 - The river turns left here and you will get your first view of the dam barrier in the distance.  Stay river left.

Mile 13.3 - As you get closer to the dam and barrier look for a break in the weeds that appears as a long straight trail to the take-out.  You may have to push through a few weeds on the way.

Mile 13.3 Portage to Mile 13.1 - The portage is 0.2  mile.  Fortunately it is an easy carry along a quiet road.  Follow River Road toward the dam.  Just as you pass the dam, there is a brown sign that reads “ Hoosic River Canoe Route Launch”.  Follow the trail to the launch below the dam.
[2] Buskirk Covered Bridge - 18.3
Position: 42-49.60 N 73-19.31 W
Boat Launch:
Access site will be just before the Buskirk Covered Bridge, on the left. It is signed.
Nearest Address: 
206 Buskirk-West Hoosick Road, Eagle Bridge, NY 12057
Put-In Directions ( 18.1 miles, 14 minutes)
From the center of Hoosick Falls.
  1. Take Route 22 North following turn John Street and quickly John Street turns left and becomes Classic Street.
  2. At mile 2.1, turn left onto Route 22 North/Route 67 West. There is a Stewarts Shop on the corner.
  3. At mile 4.6, turn left onto Route 67 West.  Benson's Family Restaurant on the corner.
  4. At mile 7.7, turn right onto Buskirk-W Hoosick Road.  White Buskirk Seventh Day Adventists Church on the corner.
  5. At mile 8.1, arrive at the covered bridge.  Access is just before the Buskirk Covered Bridge, on the left. It is signed.
Plenty of parking. This is used extensively by fishers.
Easy access to the river from the grassy area.
Buskirk Covered Bridge
         The Buskirk Covered Bridge is the only inter-county covered bridge in New York State, joining Rensselaer and Washington Counties.  It is one of four covered bridges still standing in Washington County.  It is owned and maintained by both Rensselaer and Washington Counties and carries traffic across the Hoosic River.
      Built by Peter Osterhauth, Charles Newman, James Roberts and Charles Ingalls in 1857. This158-foot-long, single span structure incorporates the Howe truss design patented in 1840, and improved in 1850, by William Howe of Springfield, Massachusetts. It is one of only three Howe truss bridges in New York State.   It was built in about 3½ months.
            One would think that the misfortunes of previous bridges at this crossing point would have prompted the builders to design for the worst conditions, but in 1880, a flood caused extensive damage. In the flood of 1927, which swept away many covered bridges in the area,there was two feet of water over the floor of the Buskirk Covered Bridge. In 1959, ice pushing against the bridge caused it to bow more than afoot in the middle. Ice again damaged the bridge in 1976. After a damaging flood in May that same year the bridge was raised two more feet.
              For more detailed information visit the New York Covered Bridges website:
Buskirk Covered Bridge
[2] Johnsonville Power Dam Portage - 13.3 (Put-In - 13.1)
Take-Out Position: 42-55.21 N 73-30.34 W
Take-Out Altitude: 342 feet

Put-In Position:      42-55.16 N 73-30.49 W
Put-In  Altitude: 306 feet
Portage Description:
       Take-Out at the small park with a concrete boat ramp.  There is adequate parking. Carry your boat along River Road.  There is very little local traffic to deal with.  The total carry is a little less than 0.2 miles.  As you reach the dam there is a sign indicating the portage trail.  Follow the trail to the Put-In below the dam on a gravel beach.
Nearest Address: 
114 River Road, Johnsonville, NY 12094
Directions ( 8.8 miles, 12 minutes)
From the intersection of Route 22 and Route 67 in NY State.  There is a flashing yellow light and Bensons Family Restaurant is on the corner.
  1. Head west on Route 67 toward Eagle Bridge.
  2. At mile 0.8, cross the river on a metal bridge. Continue on Route 67 West.
  3. At mile 8.3, turn right on County Route 111, Johnsonville Road.
  4. Go under the railroad bridge and at mile 8.4, turn right onto River Road. The Johnsonville Volunteer Ambulance is on the corner.
  5. At mile 8.6, pass the Put-In sign and the dam.
  6. At mile 8.8, arrive at the Take-Out parking.  There is plenty of parking on the gravel.  Use this same area to park for the Put-In if you plan to launch below the dam at river mile 13.1.
1. Take-Out: Nice little park with a concrete boat ramp.
A closeup of the dam and portage.
2. Follow the trail signs.  The river drops about 36 feet.
3. Follow this trail and sign to the put in below the dam.