Local Rivers and Creeks

Otselic River


A very pleasant small river that gets its start in Western Cortland and Eastern Chenango
counties. The Otselic River (footnote) ends at Whitney Point Resevoir.

Section Difficulty Distance Time Scenery Page
Willet to Upper Lisle 0 - 1 9 miles 3 hrs. very good 47
Trip Description:
Mostly flat water with slight current in one braided section before entering the area of
the river influenced by the dam and lake. It is away from the highway and view of houses
which is a plus.

An alternate trip is from Cincinnatus down to Willet where the river is narrower. It is about
a 5 mile trip. Possible strainers and sweepers in this area. Above Cincinnatus is a good area
for the experienced paddler at high water.

In: At the north east corner of the Rt. 41 bridge near the Rt. 41 and Rt. 221 intersection just
West of Willet.
Access Map

Out: Exit at Upper Lisle camp ground south west end of bridge.
Access Map

Hazards: None reported.

Water Conditions: Runnable early Spring or after heavy rain.

Gauge: Gauge at Cincinnatus should read at 1.9 - 2.0 ft. or more.

footnote: Otselic: (aht-SIL-ik) from the Indian word "Ocksilic" meaning "Plum Creek."
It had another name in 1753, which may have originated in the wild red plum.
An early Iroquios word for the plum tree was thickionk, from which Otselic might
be derived, or it may have been corrupted from oshiaki,to pluck fruit.

(Aboriginal Place Names of New York, New York State Museum).
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Revisions: Feb. 2005, June 2008 Feb. 2010