Photo by By the Way Berkshires

MA Towns in the Hoosic River Watershed:

  • Adams

  • Berkshire

  • Cheshire

  • Clarksburg

  • Hancock

  • Lanesboro

  • New Ashford

  • North Adams

  • Savoy

  • Williamstown

Major Tributaries:

  • Browns Brook

  • Case Brook

  • Hoosic North Branch

  • The Green River

  • Little Hoosic River

  • Walloomsac River

What's happening in the Hoosic River watershed? Click here to find out! 

Organizations working in the Hoosic River Watershed​

Hoosic River Revival 

Hoosic River Watershed Association 

Learn More

Environmental Concerns for the Hoosic

The biggests environmental concerns for the Hoosic River are non-point source pollution and invasive species. Pollution from stormwater runoff and industrial waste have impaired water quality in the river. Zebra mussels have outcompeted native mussles in the Hoosic River, disrupting the river's ecosystem. For more infomation, click here.

Additional Facts

History: The Hoosic River powered The City of North Adams, a 19th century mill community located on the junction of the river’s North and South junctions. Unfortunately, the fast-flowing river was also seen as dumping-grounds for industrial waste. The Hoosic River quickly became polluted, with floods containing toxic waste posing a threat to settlements on its banks. To combat this issue, flood chutes were constructed in the 1950s and remain standing to this day. In addition, restoration projects have drastically reduced the pollution that was once abundant in the Hoosic River. To learn more, click here Did You Know?

  • The Cheshire Lake was created by damming the Hoosic with the purpose of creating a supply of water for industrial purposes
  • The Hoosic River’s course was laid down before the last ice age (it is an old river)
  • Native American tribes (likely either Mohawks or Mahicans) would often travel via the Hoosic river
For more history and facts, visit this website

Hoosic River Activities
Walk, Hike, Bike
Boating & Sailing
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As a "Class B Impaired" river, swimming in the Hoosic is allowed but not recommended. There are several parks along the shore of the river that are accessible for swimming. To find out more information on water quality, check out How Clean is the Hoosic River? and the Hoosic River Recreational Assessment

Swimming locations:

  • Linear Park (Williamstown)

  • Clayton Park (Pownal)

  • Storobridge Complex (Pownal)

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Walk, Hike, Bike


Walking, hiking, and biking locations:

  • Long-distance trails:

    • The Appalachian Trail, a 2,000-mile footpath from Georgia to Maine. There are several trail shelters along the route. Backpacking The Appalachian Trail takes approx. two to four days. 

    • Taconic Crest Trail (Hancock, MA to Petersburg, NY). A 29 mile-long trail from Madden Road in Hancock to RT 436 in Petersburg. 

  • Short-distance trails:

    • Mt. Greylock State Reservation (Lanesborough). Located at 30 Rockwell Road, Lanesborough and is handicap accessible. See the state's website​ for more information.  

      • Includes (seasonal) parking fee at summit that is higher for non-MA residents.

    • ​​Mt. Tom State Reservation (Holyoke). A good trail for bird-watching, especially for seeing hawks. 

      • Includes parking fee that is higher for non-Massachusetts residents.
    • ​​Hoosac Range Trail (North Adams). Located at 2441-2599 Mohawk Trail, North Adams. See their trail map

    • The Ashuwillticook Rail Trail (Cheshire, Lanesborough, & Adams) is a 12.7 mile accessible trail. This is an old rail track converted into a 10-foot wide paved trail with multiple access points. 


Visit this website for more information on trails around the Hoosic River. 

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Paddling locations:​​

  • Recommended routes in MA from the Hoosic River Watershed Association:

    • North Adams to Lauren’s Launch (Williamstown)

    • Lauren’s Launch (Williamstown) to Clayton Park (Pownal, VT)

Visit HooRWA's page on paddling for more information, including locations in Vermont and New York. 

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Boating & Sailing


Please contact us with any information about boating the Hoosic River.

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Fishing is allowed in certain areas of the Hoosic River. The most common species of fish are Brown Trout, Brook Trout, and Rainbow Trout. 

Fishing locations:

  • For Public Fishing Rights Maps, click here