The Friends of the Chemung River Watershed is the community's connection for everything related to the beautiful Chemung River, its tributaries, and the trails and grounds surrounding the river. The 45-mile-long Chemung River is at the center of our efforts to promote regional recreation for guided paddles, fishing, riverside hikes, cross-country skiing, biking, bird watching, nature photography, and other events and programs. We also believe that a clean watershed is what makes for great outdoor recreation, drawing both locals and tourists to the area, and protecting the ecosystem is critical as we advocate for increased responsible usage of our watershed. We work to educate the public on safe and fun recreation around the river, improving the quality of life in the Southern Tier, and helping the community to embrace their role in protecting our precious natural resources.
Fascinations by the River
We are excited to announce that we have partnered with local fiber artist, Shannah Warwick from BlckBts, to do fiber art installations on the riverside trails throughout Chemung County! Our project, titled "Fascinations by the River," was recently awarded a 2022 Community Arts Grant from The ARTS Council of the Southern Finger Lakes! You'll find these nature-inspired art installations in several locations. We won't tell you where, but we've set up a scavenger hunt so you can explore our river trails and discover them on your own. Your first hint:
If you are starting at the beginning of the Chemung River in Chemung County (heading East), you will find the first piece at a boat launch named after a locally famous LANDING...
This project is made possible with funds from the Statewide Community Regrant program, a regrant program of the New York State Council on the Arts with support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature and administered by The ARTS Council of the Southern Finger Lakes.
Support River Friends
When you make a donation, ask us about how you can obtain our river map bandannas and our Susquehanna & Chemung River Guide Book—a great way to support our organization! Our bandannas are available for $10 and our Guide Book is only $40. The book is 116 pages of topographic maps of the Chemung and Susquehanna Rivers, boating regulations, paddling tips, safety info, river history, camp sites, and so much more!
Guided canoe & kayak trips, river hikes, bike treks, cross-country skiing and riverbank cleanups, building boat launches, developing riverside education and safe boating programs for all ages, preserving and protecting our rivers, plants, and wildlife, and promoting the scenic beauty that is the Chemung River... You can support all the we do by becoming a "River Friend" member through a donation!
Osprey Live Cam
Check out our live stream from the Osprey Nesting Pole on Clinton Island in Downtown Elmira, sponsored by Casella! Watch these beautiful birds before they migrate and after they return to the nest, or watch our beautiful river during the off-season.
You will be prompted to login. Use the word "guest" as both the user name and password.
River Maps & Launch Sites
We have everything you'll need as you explore our rivers! You can view our interactive map, learn about water safety, and learn all about the history of our rivers. Explore the site menus above for more info. You can click on the button below to view current water levels.
In August, we had an amazing day with Burt Beebe from Honeybeemade, Mark Earley from Mark’s Hive Relocation, and Casella Waste Systems at the Bee Apiaries on the land buffers! We learned so much on the life of bees, their importance to our watershed ecosystem, and the importance of responsible waste management! This is just one of the many interest programs we run to educate the community on our watershed’s ecosystem. To learn about more of our upcoming programs, click below.
When we receive reports of dangerous obstacles on the rivers, we post them here. Whether you’re out on your boat fishing, hunting, or enjoying the scenery, the Safe Boating Campaign has some tips to get the most out of your adventure on the water and avoid the dangers of cold-water immersion.
Chemung River Trail Assessment & Comprehensive Master Plan
Prepared for the City of Elmira, NY, & Chemung County Waterfront Advisory Committee. [PDF]
A Driving Guide to History Along the Chemung River
Explore the path of the Chemung River in Chemung County and learn about its historic significance. [PDF]