Green Ridge State Forest


Paddling in Green Ridge State ForestThis winding section of the Potomac River is runable year-round except after severe drought. Boaters travel at approximately 1.5 miles per hour during normal water conditions. Though most of the way is flat, the river must be considered potentially dangerous at all times. River currents are strong, deceptive and unpredictable. A canoe campsite is available on a first-come, first-served basis at Bond's Landing. Paddlers should always be aware of the weather forecast when preparing for a trip.

  • 12 miles - 5 hours - Class I
    Boat launch parking is located just over the Route 51 bridge entering the town of Paw Paw, West Virginia. Your paddle trip will parallel the C&O Canal, which includes the historic Paw Paw Tunnel, worth stopping for a visit. The floodplain shoreline is home to an abundance of wildlife, including colorful wood ducks and river otters. Camping is located at the Bond's Landing take out site, as well as several other locations along the canal.

  • Bond's Landing to Fifteen Mile Creek
    9 miles - 3 hours - Class I

    Get a feeling of past centuries when Native Americans were dependent on the resources of the Potomac River. They drank its water, fished it for food and used it to guide them from one hunting ground to another. Follow a great blue heron downriver or search for evidence of beavers. Enjoy a cold drink and sandwich at the end of your trip at locally-owned Bill's Place.

Paddling Safety Tips

  • Always wear a lifejacket.
  • Paddle with others.
  • Always check the river's conditions in advance by calling NOAA 703-260-0305.
  • If air and water temperatures combined total less than 120 degrees, wear a wetsuit.

The American Canoe Association advocates for paddler safety, clean water, the preservation of natural resources and paddler access to our waterways. For more information visit or call 703-451-0141.​