Blueway Trail: Willsboro Bay to the Four Brothers Islands

This segment begins in the picturesque Willsboro Bay and take paddlers around Willsboro Point, once a site of many limestone quarries. The trail continues out to the Four Brothers Islands, which offers unparalleled bird watching opportunities. The route ends near the mouth of the beautiful Boquet River, another lively spot for wildlife viewing.

The more ambitious paddlers can chose to hug the western shore of Willsboro Bay on their way out of the bay in order to see the impressive cliffs and clefts up close.

Launch Sites: Willsboro Bay NY Boat Launch; Noblewood Park Canoe and Kayak access

Approximate Paddling Distance: 14.5 miles (23 kilometers)

Insider Tip from Paddler Cathy Frank: "Be prepared for the raucous bird calls as you approach the Four Brother Islands. While the islands are home to mostly cormorants, a variety of gulls and a growing population of Caspian terns also nest here. You might catch a glimpse of black-back gull snagging a Caspian tern chick."

Notes: This segment should only be done in calm and clear weather by experienced paddlers as the islands are located nearly in the center of the broadest part of the lake, and paddlers will be exposed to wind in all directions. It is also important to stay far enough away from the islands as to not disturb the birds.

Layers
Willsboro Bay State Boat Launch
1
Willsboro Bay State Boat Launch
Recreation | Boat Launches and Fishing

The Willsboro Bay State Boat Launch is located on Lake Champlain’s Willsboro Bay about three miles north of the hamlet of Willsboro. 

Managed by the State Department of Environment and Conservation, the launch features a hard surface ramp…

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Willsboro Bay
2
Willsboro Bay
Transportation and Travel Routes | By Water

Willsboro Bay is a deep and peaceful fjord-like bay. The bay’s western shore is undeveloped and is comprised of many sheer cliffs; boaters are able to travel very close to its edge and explore the many waterfalls and rocky crevices.These towering…

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Frisbie Point
Heritage Areas and Sites | Historic Districts and Sites

Frisbie Point is part of a special Willsboro Point historic district called the Bluestone Historic District along with the Clark Quarry on Ligonier Point on the east side of the Point. On Frisbie Point there is still a marine railway and other…

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Willsboro Point
4
Willsboro Point
Heritage Areas and Sites | Historic Districts and Sites

Willsboro Point has long been a productive farming area. It is also the site of three quarries: Frisbie Quarry, Clark Quarry, and a small one used briefly for road stone--as well as shipyards at the two larger quarries. There was also a…

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Four Brothers Islands
5
Four Brothers Islands
Natural Areas | Wildlife

The Four Brother Islands are four islands with a total of 14.2 acres. These islands were once the home to a healthy and diversified bird population, but most vegetation is now dead from an over-population of cormorants, and a significantly…

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Ligonier Point
6
Ligonier Point
Heritage Areas and Sites | Historic Districts and Sites

Ligonier Point, the site of  Clark Quarry, is a Historic Landing. Massive amounts of stone left this dock for building most of the lighthouses on Lake Champlain, several Champlain Canal locks, foundation stone for the New York State capitol…

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Flat Rock Camp
Heritage Areas and Sites | Historic Districts and Sites

Flat Rock is owned by the Paine Family and it is an extraordinary natural area of glaciated Potsdam sandstone rock. Almost all of the soil was removed by glaciers and an unusual population of pitch pines, mosses, wildflowers, and other vegetation…

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Boquet River Delta
8
Boquet River Delta
Natural Areas | Geologic Feature

The Boquet River Delta is an area of course, shifting sands forming a long narrow beach--one of the relatively rare swimmer's beaches on Lake Champlain. The delta area covers a wide fan of sand, clay, drift wood, and other alluvial material…

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Boquet River
9
Boquet River
Natural Areas | Geologic Feature

The Boquet River is a short stream, yet an important player in the iron history of the region. Shallow draft vessels called lighters were used to transport iron ore downstream to the Boquet River Falls.  Bloom iron (slag-riddled iron castings)…

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Noblewood Park
10
Noblewood Park
Recreation | Beaches and Swimming Holes

Nobelwood Park is located along the Lake Champlain shore at the mouth of the Boquet River. Facilities include a public swimming area, bath house, primitive camp sites, and canoe and kayak access. The park itself covers close to 70 acres.

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the best travel advice comes from the people who live here
Gretel Schueller

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Trip Plan Details

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In This Trip Plan

1 Willsboro Bay State Boat Launch
2 Willsboro Bay
3 Frisbie Point
4 Willsboro Point
5 Four Brothers Islands
6 Ligonier Point
7 Flat Rock Camp
8 Boquet River Delta
9 Boquet River
10 Noblewood Park
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