Water Quality

Indian Brook Water Quality Update 7.20.23
All three sites/samples are back to "normal" e.coli levels and are suitable for swimming again!

What are the risks of swimming in contaminated waters?

Heavy rainfall and floods have led to dangerously fast-moving water. People and pets should stay out of any body of water after a flooding event. Even in normal conditions, it’s best to wait 48 hours after a storm to go in the water.

Conditions of high water and strong undercurrents can linger several days after a storm. Even strong swimmers are at high risk of injury or death. Many rivers, ponds, lakes, and streams have been contaminated by disease-causing microorganisms, fuel, debris, and wastewater runoff. 

Swimming in contaminated water can result in skin rashes, sore throats, diarrhea, or more serious problems from bacterial infection. Unseen hazards and debris are also dangerous for recreational boating.

Pay attention to posted information at beaches and other swim areas.

We consider the months of October through April (and sometimes into May) our off-season.

During these months passes are not required and we do not have staff onsite. We are also not monitoring the water quality. This means that the reservoir continues to be "swim at your own risk", humans and dogs alike. Please use caution when enjoying the park.

You will find up-to-date testing information here. If water quality is unsafe signage will be posted at Indian Brook as soon as possible.

Water Testing Overview:

The water at Indian Brook is tested every two weeks through the Vermont Department of Health for E.Coli. The Parks and Recreation Department tests the water in three different locations. The locations are identified on the map. The Department of Health has identified the acceptable level of E-coli at 77 parts per 100 milliliters for swimming. 

For up to date information, please visit: https://www.essexvt.org/802/EColi-Results-Information

Cyanobacteria can multiply quickly to form surface scums and dense populations known as blooms, especially during the warm days of late summer and early fall. If you have a concern or observe Cyanobacteria at Indian Brook please send pictures and location information to recmail@essex.org.This will help our staff visually confirm from the pictures as well as visit the location at the park. From here testing may or may not occur based on suspicion of Cyanobacteria. 

For up to date information, please visit: https://www.essexvt.org/799/Cyanobacteria-Information-Results

In the instance of the suspicion of Cyanobacteria, water samples will be taken and sent to a local lab. Results can take several days to come back.