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Great Chazy River

By Water
At the mouth of the Great Chazy River. – Courtesy of Cathy Frank

Insider Tip from paddler Cathy Frank: "The Great Chazy River has flat water up to the town of Champlain and is a nice paddle even on windy days."


The Great Chazy River is a major river that opens into Kings Bay and rises in Franklin County, flowing through the villages of Perry’s Mills, Champlain, and Coopersville. At one time, it had as many as 27 sawmills on its banks. After 1893, there are no official reports of commercial traffic on the river. In 1895, there was a federal project to keep the river navigable up to Champlain with a channel 5 feet deep and 40 feet wide.

At the mouth, George Rochester, a British boat builder, operated a shipyard from 1819-1860. Over 10 large vessels were built here, yet all evidence of the yard was gone by 1892.

Champlain was the location of another large shipyard toward the end of the 1800s operated by Averill and Kellogg. Several distinctive sailing barges designed for use on the lake were built here, as well as several large motor yachts designed for summer touring. The ferry G. R. Sherman was built here too.