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Corps of Engineers support canoeists, kayakers, rafters on West River with white water releases

Published Sept. 25, 2012

CONCORD, Mass. – Controlled releases of water will be made by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New England District, from Ball Mountain Dam and Townshend Lake reservoirs in Jamaica and Townshend, Vermont, on Saturday, Sept. 29 to provide adequate river flows for recreational canoeing, kayaking and rafting, according to Corps of Engineers officials.

 

The park gates will be open from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. to welcome the approximately 800 participants the Corps expects to turn out to enjoy this white water activity. Corps park rangers at Ball Mountain Lake expect the white water enthusiasts will be out all day on Saturday, Sept. 29, 2012, as water releases of 1,500 cubic feet per second (cfs) are scheduled for both Ball Mountain and Townshend dams from about 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (conditions willing), which should provide a full day and an ample amount of white water for the recreational canoeists, kayakers and rafters to enjoy the river. The 8-mile run from Ball Mountain Dam to the backwater of Townsend Lake has class II-IV rapids with 1 to 2 foot drops.

 

Ball Mountain Dam, on the West River in Jamaica, was constructed at a cost of $11 million in 1961 to reduce flooding. The 915‑foot‑long, 265‑foot‑high dam can impound a 54,600‑acre‑foot reservoir, which is equivalent to 17.8 billion gallons of water. During the 1987 floods, Ball Mountain Dam used 100 percent of its storage capacity and prevented damages of $18.3 million. Since it was placed in operation in 1961, it has prevented damages of $162.2 million. The reservoir area offers many recreational opportunities, including swimming, picnicking, fishing, hunting, canoeing, nature study and camping at Winhall Brook Camping Area in South Londonderry. This popular camping area offers 111 sites for tent or RV campers. Some sites have hookups and others have lean-to shelters for rent. Ball Mountain welcomes more than 130,000 visitors each year.

 

Townshend Dam, on the West River in Townshend is 1,700 feet long, 133 feet high and cost $7.4 million to construct.  Its lake can hold a 33,700-acre‑foot reservoir with a capacity to store 10.8 billion gallons of water. During the 1987 floods, the dam used 100 percent of its storage capacity and prevented damages of $14.2 million. Since it was placed in operation in 1961, it has prevented damages of $137.1 million. The reservoir area offers many recreational opportunities, including swimming, picnicking, fishing, hunting, canoeing, boating and nature study and annually attracts nearly 81,000 visitors. 

 

Townshend Lake, in conjunction with Ball Mountain Lake, provides scheduled white water releases in the fall. More than 800 canoeists, kayakers and rafters take advantage of the event each year. Ball Mountain Lake is located at 88 Ball Mountain Lane off of Route 30 or Route 100 in Jamaica. For more information on the white water event or Corps recreation contact the Ball Mountain Lake project office at (802) 874-4881 or check the website: www.nae.usace.army.mil/recreati/bml/bmlhome.htm.  


Contact
Tim Dugan
978-318-8264
cenae-pa@usace.army.mil

Release no. 2012-090