Lenght of this section: 8 miles

Altitude drop over this section: 22 miles

This section is only about 8 miles and  it took me only 2 hours. It was June 26, 2013 when I paddled this section and the water level was pretty high. Had it been later in the summer the current would not have been as strong and most likely would have taken me longer.

As I mentioned in the previous section, there is a dangerous dam just below the bridge at Oakland PA and I decided to begin this section downriver of the dam so that I did not have to portage. In this area, both river banks are very steep and it is difficult to fid an entry point. I scouted the right side of the river (right side looking downriver) and could not find a good place to put in. Then I crossed the bridge and explored the left side. There too I could not find a good place, but it would be preferable to the right side. I Also decided that I would leave my car at Halstead (8 miles down) where there is a nice public boat ramp. But, I had to figure out how I would get back to my kayak at Oakland. I already knew from the last time that there are no taxis in Oakland, and Uber did not yet exist. I thought that maybe I could do like last time; go to the Main St. Café and see if someone, Maybe Kevin, would help me. But unfortunately the Main St. Café was closed. When I was exploring the left side of the river I noticed  a man cutting wood with a chainsaw on the dirt road that parallels the river. So, I drove back, pulled over near where he parked his truck and engaged him in conversation. I explained to him what I was doing and asked if he could follow me to Halstead where I would leave my car and he would drive me back. For his trouble I told him I would give him $50. He told me he would have to ask his wife, but thought it would be ok. He said it would take him 15 minutes or so to go home and ask as he had no cell phone. I offered for him to use mine, but he could not remember her number.

 It took him longer than 15 minutes to come back. I waited a half hour and was ready to give up when I spotted his truck coming back. The wife said it was ok. So, I dropped my kayak and headed to Halstead with him following in his truck. On the way back we had a chance to talk. Very nice guy, and it was evident that the $50 I gave him were very much appreciated. I am sure he would not have taken the money if he did not need them. When we got back to my kayak he showed me a path that winds down to the river and that made it much easier than having to descend the steep bank. I was grateful for that.


The Main St. Café. When I paddled the section from Ouaquaga NY to Oakland PA the owner, Kevin gave me a ride back to my kayak. But, this time the café was closed.

The path leading down to the river. I was grateful for having been told about the path. Otherwise I would have to go down a steep bank, cross the railroad, and then more steep bank.

The dam at Oakland. As you can see there is a dangerous breach in the middle. I was glad to start out below the dam so that I could avoid the portage.

Just as I was about to set out a group of young people where in the process of portaging at the dam. Best side to portage is on the left side looking down river.

The railroad bridge just below the dam at Oakdale. I set out at 3:30.

At 4:00 I reach this river access point. I failed to make a note as to where it is located. But since it took me about half hour to reach this point it must be located one fourth of the distance from Oakland to Hallstead.

At 5:02 I reach the Route 81 bridge just before Hallstead.

At 5:08 I reach the route 11 bridge in Hallstead. The boat ramp is just before the bridge.

The boat ramp and parking lot at Hallstead. Next: Hallstead to Binghamton, NY