New Hampshire Nature August 19, 2017
11 Rivers In New Hampshire That Are So Much More Than Just A Body Of Water
There’s something special about rivers – after all, through America’s history they’ve been an important source of life-giving water, transportation, and even energy. After all, New Hampshire had its fair share of water-powered mills back in the day! Next time you’re driving along one of these Granite State Rivers, stop a moment to think about the role it plays in our state.
Here are a few of our favorite rivers:
1. Androscoggin River
The mighty Androscoggin originates in Erroll, New Hampshire, at Umbagog Lake. It flows south, then east across the state before cutting over to Maine, where it empties into the Atlantic. Back in the day it powered textile and lumber mills, pollution from which helped inspire the Clean Water Act of 1972. The river still powers quite a few paper mills!
2. Saco River
The Saco originates in Saco Lake in Crawford Notch, and like the Androscoggin passes into Maine before emptying into the Atlantic. It supplies drinking water to about 250,000 people, and is a beloved destination for float trips.
3. Piscataqua River
This is an important one for New Hampshire, since it forms the boundary between our state and Maine. It begins at the confluence of Salmon Falls River and Cohecho River, and the last 6 miles before it empties into the sea form our beloved Portsmouth Harbor.
4. Merrimack River
The Merrimack River flows south from Franklin through New Hampshire and Massachusetts before emptying in Newburyport, MA. Concord, Manchester, and Nashua were built where they are to take advantage of its water power!
5. Connecticut River
The boundary line between New Hampshire and Vermont is drawn by this river, the longest in New England at 406 miles. It begins at the US border with Quebec and ends at Long Island Sound.
6. Cocheco River
The Cocheco is a tributary of the Piscataqua that starts in Strafford and runs to join the Piscataqua in Maine. Power from the river is created at the Dover Hydroelectric Station.
7. Pemigewasset River, Nr Kancamagus Hiwy, Lincoln, New Hampshire, United States
Also known as the Pemi, this river begins at Profile Lake in Franconia Notch State Park and merges with the Winnipesaukee River to form the Merrimack in Franklin. It's another great one for tubing!
8. Winnipesaukee River
As you could probably guess, the Winnipesaukee River begins at Lake WInnipesaukee. It joins with the Pemi in Franklin to form the Merrimack.
9. Ashuelot River
This tributary of the Connecticut originates in Butterfield Pond in Pillsbury State park before joining the Connecticut in Hinsdale. It's part of the U.S. Atlantic Salmon Restoration Program.
10. Contoocook River
The Contoocook flows from the Jaffrey/Rindge to meet the Merrimack north of Concord - flowing primarily north! You can find two gorgeous covered bridges on this river.
11. Souhegan River
This tributary of the Merrimack flows from New Ipswich until it joins with the Merrimack past the Everett Turnpike and US Route 3. It provides drinking water and hydropower to area residents, and people love to relax on its banks.
What role have New Hampshire’s rivers played in your life?