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County Line Flow

It's all about secluded fishing here! Drop a line and have fun.

Getting there

From Newcomb follow Route 28N west toward Long Lake. Continue for around 9.5 miles to the access site on the right. Look for a DEC sign. Follow this short gravel road down to the parking lot.


There is very little shoreline fishing available here. The easement only allows for a boat launch to the flow and at the launch there is very little access for decent casting. The shore of the flow is not open to the public. However, by boat you can access Fishing Brook that feeds into and out of the flow where you can fish from shore, but you need to remain within 33 feet of the shore of the brook. All non-motorized uses allowed. Electric motors are permitted.

Fish species types: brook trout, bullhead

Special Regulations: No shore access from County Line Flow, stay within 33 feet of Fishing Brook when fishing from shore.

Special notes


  • Do not go ashore on County Line Flow.
  • Stay within 33 feet of Fishing Brook

Always follow State fishing regulations and be sure to pick up a NYS Freshwater Fishing Guide at your local outfitters or regional NYSDEC office.


The carry is an easy one as it is all downhill. It is a carry of only around 200' so a cart would not be necessary. The launch area is still fairly new and opened by the DEC under a conservation easement with the land owners. The pond is long and somewhat narrow, allowing for excellent wind protection, but it can still get a bit choppy during bad weather. Small bays and narrows on the NW end of the pond are a nice place to check out. You can proceed up and down Fishing Brook a little bit if the conditions are right.

Well sheltered and calm, there may be small motors on the small pond as it is essentially a private pond with public access. There is no access to shore from the pond other than the launch site.

Challis Pond Trail

There is a slight incline to this hike but it's very pretty and a relaxing hike. The pond gets its name from an early pioneer named Timothy Challis. 

Getting there

From Exit 29 off of Interstate 87, follow Blue Ridge Road toward North Hudson and take a left onto Route 9 and to follow it north. Continue for 2.5 miles and turn right on Caza Turn Road, then take the next right onto Ensign Pond Road. Follow Ensign Pond Road for around 2.5 miles to the trailhead on the right. There is limited parking and a fairly obscure trail, with only a small sign marking it.

By the numbers

The Challis Pond Trail is an easy, 1.2 mile loop.


The trail traverses a fine hemlock and cedar forest. This is a very enjoyable just over half-mile hike to a pond; it's easy to fall in love with. With minimal effort and only a slight climb, the trail passes a small, attractive waterfall before it reaches the north end of Challis Pond. A nice family picnic might be in order here.


Challis Pond offers early-season anglers brook trout. Reclaimed in 1992, the Little Tupper Lake Strain of brook trout were then stocked in this 15-acre pond. Remember that trout fishing is best when the water temperatures are cool – ice out to mid-May and then again in mid-September until the close of the season. Because this is a reclaimed pond, the use or possession of baitfish is prohibited here.


The hardest part of this paddle destination is reaching it, and that isn’t all that difficult with a lightweight boat. The portage to the pond is slightly uphill but the footing is pretty good in reaching this small backcountry jewel. It will be a 0.6 mile carry to the pond. The water is calm and well protected. There is no official launch but anywhere along the shore can be used.

Schroon River Paddle


This paddle, beginning at the NYS DEC boat launch on Glendale Road and ending at the Starbuckville Dam, is one of three paddles required to complete the Schroon Paddle Challenge.

How to get there

The put in for this paddle is at the Horicon boat launch, located on County Route 62 (Glendale Road), 
between Route 9 and County Route 15 (Adirondack Road) in Pottersville, NY.

By the numbers

  • 4.25 miles / 6.8 km one way (only one way is required to complete the Schroon Paddle Challenge)

  • Slow and winding river paddle on the Schroon River

Slow and winding river paddling

Begin this paddle at the NYS DEC-operated Horicon boat launch on Glendale Road. Paddle under the bridge and into the river. Enjoy a slow and winding trip downstream as you pass a number of waterfront homes, a large cattle ranch, and a wooded area. Note that the cattle will sometimes stand in the river but pose no threat to paddlers. Do not attempt to paddle past the bridge marked with warning signs. 

If you are completing this paddle for the Schroon Paddle Challenge, only one way of the trip is required. Consider spotting a car at the Starbuckville Dam, or plan to take the return paddle to the Horicon boat launch. 

The owner of the private Riverside Pines campground, near Starbuckville Dam, has graciously offered one-way trip paddlers to take out at the beach, and has offered round-trip paddlers to rest briefly at the campground beach before making the return trip. We extend a hearty thank you to the new owners of Riverside Pines for allowing paddlers to rest and take out here . . . please treat this spot with respect!



This section of river is frequented by many species of birds, including ravens, bald eagles, and both green and great blue herons.


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Paradox Lake Paddle


This paddle begins and ends at the DEC boat launch within the Paradox Lake public campground, and is one of three paddles required to complete the Schroon Paddle Challenge.

How to get there

From I-87, take Exit 28, then Rte. 74 east approximately 4 miles to Paradox Lake. Put in at the public DEC Campground boat launch. Head west (left) through the Narrows and into lower Paradox Lake.

By the numbers

  • Distance varies
  • Flatwater lake paddle

Flat water paddling

Put in at the public DEC boat launch within the Paradox Lake public campground. Paddle from the boat launch through the narrows and then into Paradox Lake. Paddle to the end of the lake and return. Boats with motors are allowed on Paradox Lake.

Swimming, hiking and wildlife viewing

On the way back, circle past Birch Island, stop for a swim, and return to the campground launch. Paradox Lake is known for excellent fishing and great bird watching. Look for herons, red winged blackbirds, and cormorants. If you’re adventurous, just before you enter the Narrows you will see a DEC sign for a hike up Peaked Hill. Pull up your boat, take in this short hike, and continue paddling . . . while it’s not required for the Challenge, it is well worth the effort.



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Schroon River to Schroon Lake Paddle


This paddle, beginning on Schroon River and ending on Schroon Lake, is one of three paddles required to complete the Schroon Paddle Challenge.

How to get there

The put in for this paddle is on the Schroon River, at the state access point just past the bridge on Alder Meadow Road.

By the numbers

  • 4.5 miles / 7.25 km one way (only one way is required to complete the Schroon Paddle Challenge)

  • Slow and winding river paddle on the Schroon River, leading to flatwater lake paddle on Schroon Lake

Winding river and flat water paddling

Begin this paddle on the Schroon River at the put-in on Alder Meadow Road. Enjoy a slow and winding paddle downstream before entering the northern end of Schroon Lake. End your paddle at the Schroon Lake boat launch on the west side of the lake. If you are completing this paddle for the Schroon Paddle Challenge, only one way of the trip is required. Consider spotting a car at the Schroon Lake boat launch, or plan to take the return paddle to the put in on Alder Meadow Road. Boats with motors are allowed on Schroon Lake.


On a nice day, stop at the sand beach opposite the Marina for a swim and a picnic.


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Henderson Lake

Henderson Lake is located in the High Peaks Wilderness and is wonderfully wild, despite having fairly easy access! 

How to get there

From exit 29 off I-87, turn west onto Blue Ridge Road (CR 84) toward Newcomb. Follow this route for 17.4 miles to an intersection with Tahawus Road (CR 25). Turn right on Tahawus Road and stay on it for 6.3 miles then turn left at a sign for High Peaks trails. Pass by the old blast furnace at 2.8 miles up this road. From the blast furnace, it is less than one mile to your destination. The road dead ends at the Upper Works parking lot. This is also the access point for hiking trails into the High Peaks; it may get crowded during peak season. 


Our friends at Open Space Institute have announced that effective June 18, 2021, please use the new parking lot adjacent to the MacNaughton Cottage. The old parking lot (terminus of Upper Works Road) will be closed for construction. Unauthorized vehicles in the old parking lot after June 18, 2021 will be towed away at vehicle owners expense. Signage has been placed throughout the old parking lot. They, and we, do not want any surprises for anyone. Thank you and Happy trails! This new parking will not add significant milage to your trip.


The mirror-like waters of Henderson Lake so perfectly reflect the towering mountains and cliffs it's almost dizzying! But don't let that stop you; this is a great spot to paddle, especially if you're looking for something wild. There are views in any direction.

We recommend a canoe cart, if you have access to one. There is a small, slightly uphill carry of 0.3 miles to the put in. However, the path is very cart friendly.

Oliver Pond

Oliver Pond is a quiet body of water where the fish are plentiful and the wildlife is abundant! 

How to get there

South of Schroon Lake on Route 9, turn right onto Hoffman Road (County Road 24). Follow this for 8-miles to parking on the right.


There is a short carry to the water, but once there, you'll find perfect flatwater for paddling. It's only 44.50 acres, so get ready for small pond paddling and solitude. There are also two campsites accessible via a short paddle.


Fishing from a canoe or kayak is the best option here. The pond contains brook trout. Use or possession of baitfish is prohibited.

Boreas Ponds Tract

Views of the High Peaks dominate the scene from the shore of Boreas Ponds, the 320-acre waterbody for which this region is named. LaBier Flow, Boreas River, LeClaire Brook, Casey Brook, Slide Brook, and White Lily Brook can also be found on this tract.

This tract is a new addition to the Adirondack Park Forest Preserve and the Department of Environmental Conservation is in the process of adding new features, such as trails, campsites, and maintaining roads. Please check their website for the most up-to-date information.

Getting there

Gulf Brook Road is the main route to Boreas Ponds. It's located off Blue Ridge Road, about 16.5 miles east of Newcomb and about 7 miles west of Exit 29 on I-87. Visitors are permitted to drive on Gulf Brook Road as far as the fourth parking area, after which it's an easy 3.5 mile walk or bike ride to the pond.

Hiking, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing

Gulf Brook Road is currently the main route to Boreas Ponds, but a number of other trails are in the works that will lead to ponds, mountains, and existing trails in the High Peaks Wilderness.

Hikers can park at the first lot to walk the entire 6.7 mile Gulf Brook Road to reach Boreas Ponds, or they can park at one of the other three lots along the road to shorten the trip. From the fourth lot, it's about 3.5 miles to the pond. The road travels through a dense, young forest for most of its length and doesn't really get scenic until it reaches LaBier Flow, a mile or so from Boreas Ponds. Shortly after that is a four-way intersection — take a right to pass by a cabin and another view of LaBier Flow before reaching the shore of Boreas Ponds.


The views from the ponds themselves make for a fine distraction while padding. Venture onto the Boreas Ponds themselves or head into LaBier Flow for a quick paddle.


Bicycling is permitted along Gulf Brook Road, from Blue Ridge Road to Boreas Ponds Dam. Bikes are not allowed past the dam.

Fishing, hunting, and trapping

The Boreas Pond Tract is open to fishing, hunting, and trapping.

Essex Chain Lakes

The 19,600-acre Essex Chain Lakes Complex opened to the public in the summer of 2014 as a prime destination for Adirondack paddling, camping, hiking, hunting, and fishing. The region contains the eight lakes in the Essex Chain as well as numerous other lakes and ponds. The Hudson River forms the eastern boundary of the complex, and small hills and mountains dot the entire area.

Getting there

The Essex Chain Lakes Complex spans three towns and two counties – Minerva, Newcomb, and Long Lake in Essex and Hamilton counties.

In Newcomb, there is a sign for the Essex Chain Lakes Primitive Area at the intersection of Route 28N and Pine Tree Road. Take Pine Tree Road for a couple hundred feet to a right turn on Goodnow Flow Road. Take the Goodnow Flow Road for 4.3 miles to a right turn on Woody's Road. Travel on Woody's Road for 1.5 miles to its end. Woody's Road is paved for three-quarters of a mile before becoming a seasonal use dirt road from April 1 to November 1. At the end of Woody's Road, turn left onto Cornell Road (there is a sign indicating a left turn for the Essex Chain Lakes at this location). Follow Cornell Road for approximately 4.4 miles to the parking area for the Essex Chain Lakes. Cornell Road is a one lane dirt road with a speed limit of 15 mph. High clearance vehicles are recommended, but low clearance vehicles can make it in with great care.

Paddling and portage

Paddlers can spend the day or camp at one of the designated sites. Campsites along the lakes and ponds are first come, first served and do not require a permit.

From the parking area, a quarter-mile carry begins on a dirt road with a right turn onto a short trail that leads downhill to the shores of Deer Pond. Paddle directly across Deer Pond, and carry an additional half-mile to Third Lake. The half-mile carry begins on a trail that leads uphill from Deer Pond to an old dirt road. Most of the carry is along this dirt road before a left turn on a trail leading downhill to Third Lake. At 216 acres, Third Lake is the largest lake in the chain. Heading southwest takes a paddler to Second Lake. A short carry is required to reach First Lake and an additional carry of four-tenths of a mile is needed to reach Grassy Pond.

Heading northeast from the put-in at Third Lake, a paddler can traverse Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, and Seventh Lakes without any more carrying. There are future plans to add a carry to Eighth Lake. There is ongoing work to improve the carry trails.

Additional information

All the lakes have wooden signs that indicate what number lake you are entering. There is a dirt road between Fourth and Fifth Lakes with a large culvert underneath that paddlers can use to change lakes. A rope with knots is hung along the length of the culvert so paddlers can pull themselves through! In high water, it may be necessary to get out and take your boat over the road.

The campsites are primitive with wall-less privies. There are no fires allowed at the campsites located along the lakes and ponds.


There are a number of plans underway to add winter recreational opportunities in this newly opened area, so stay tuned for additional announcements.

Find out more

Read the blog post, Paddling the Essex Chain Lakes.


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