Piercefield Flow

The Piercefield Flow is a section of the Raquette River that has been flooded due to a hydroelectric dam. Not that this is a bad thing, it makes for some outstanding flatwater paddling and fishing (so don’t forget the pole). In the autumn, it becomes increasingly beautiful as the warm hues of changing leaves reflect off of the water. 

Getting there

From the intersection of Route 3 and Route 30 in Tupper Lake follow Route 3 toward Piercefield. Continue for just under 7 miles to the launch area on the left.


With a designated soft-launch site on the southwestern side of the Flow, you will find easy access for up to medium-sized motor boats. Adjacent to the launch site you will find a pleasant picnic area and handicap accessible overlook which is also a popular fishing spot. Once you are on the water, make sure to visit the island just off shore for a cool place to relax or paddle upstream to Setting Pole Dam.

Please note: do not paddle down-stream; the power dam is located just a bit further down.

  • Type of launch: Roadside, less than 50 feet, sand and gravel, flat
  • Type of water: This is a decent-sized body of water but it doesn’t tend to get the whitecaps and heavy wind that Raquette Pond gets a bit further east. The Flow is sheltered due to its narrow passage, but always pay attention to weather.

As with all bodies of water that allow for motorboats, use caution and be on the lookout.


Shoreline fishing from this location is very popular, especially from the platform of the old bridge. Additional shoreline fishing is near the sand boat launch area, but access is limited to these two locations.

This boat access is best for smaller outboard motor boats. It is not adequate for large boats. Fishing from the deep portion of the flow which is part of the Raquette River can bring in some serious surprises and some decent fishing outcomes. The eastern portion of the lake tends to hold the walleye, and the deep portions of the lake near the center are a great place for bass.

  • Fish Species Types: Northern pike, smallmouth bass, bullhead, panfish, walleye
  • Special Regulations: Much of the shore is private property, please respect private property. Always follow state fishing regulations and be sure to pick up a NYS Freshwater Fishing Guide at your local outfitters or regional NYSDEC office.


The Big Tupper Conservation Easement has a lean-to campsite on the northern shore of Piercefield Flow. This is in the Special Use Area and is the only place where camping is allowed.