calm river surrounded by leaf-less trees
Poultney River Poultney River in Autumn's afternoon light © Murray McHugh

Places We Protect

Lower Poultney River Natural Area


Best known for freshwater mussels, the Poultney River features nearly 20 miles of natural shoreline.

The Poultney River meanders 40 miles through several towns in west-central Vermont and New York, defining a portion of the border between these two states before it drains into the southern extent of Lake Champlain. The scenery marked by cliffs and wetlands along the river is dramatic and for nearly 20 miles the natural shoreline of the Poultney is rarely interrupted by development.

Why the Conservancy Selected This Site

The cluster of significant terrestrial and aquatic sites in this largely undeveloped region of the Southern Lake Champlain Valley is a hotspot of biodiversity. New York State and the Adirondack Park Agency have recognized the ecological diversity of the Poultney River area, and the State of Vermont named the river an Outstanding Resource Water in 1992. The Conservancy included the Poultney River as part of its Freshwater Initiative Program, which has targeted 50 waterways in North and South America for intensive conservation efforts.

What the Conservancy is Doing

This preserve is part of the Southern Lake Champlain Valley (SLCV) landscape. The Conservancy has protected more than 8,500 acres in the SLCV area in Vermont and New York. From their office in West Haven, SLCV staff manage the preserve lands and provide opportunities for the community to participate in conservation-related activities.

A canoe put-in can be found at Coggman Creek culvert on East Bay Road.

Hunters use this preserve during the month of May and from October 1 to December 31. If you visit during hunting season, please wear bright clothing. Written permission is required to hunt at the Lower Poultney River Preserve.

Please read our Preserve Visitation Guidelines.