Friends of the Mad River

Friends of the Mad River (Friends) is a member-supported, nonprofit organization, founded in 1990. Friends is dedicated to stewarding the Mad River Valley’s healthy land and clean water for our community and for future generations. We build diverse partnerships of neighbors, businesses, towns, and other organizations to restore and enhance the watershed’s valued resources. Together, we learn about the health of the land and water; conserve our natural resources; and celebrate this special place. Our work is grounded in sound science, inclusive education and engagement, and thoughtful action.



Friends of the Mad River
The General Wait House
4061 Main Street (office)

PO Box 255 (mailing)
Waitsfield, VT 05673



Friends has been monitoring water quality in the Mad River since 1985 and has the longest continuous volunteer water quality monitoring dataset in the country. Every summer, volunteers collect water samples at dozens of sites on the Mad River and its tributaries. Analysis includes water temperature, E. coli bacteria levels, total phosphorus and total nitrogen. MRW E. coli samples are analyzed "in-house" and results are published in the Valley Reporter, Facebook and the FMR website and also displayed on FMR signs at ten popular swim holes weekly.

Get Involved

It takes people power to keep the landscape healthy and scenic for the community to enjoy, and for the benefit of future generations.

Thank you to our volunteers for all they do, to the landowners who give us access to important sites, to those near and far who decide to support Friends of the Mad River as donors, and to the community members who care and work to thoughtfully steward their land.

It doesn’t happen without effort, and it takes us all. Thank you!

Current volunteers:

  • Collect water quality samples & help the Mad River Watch program in various other ways
  • "Adopt" tree planting sites and take care of them
  • Participate in the Ridge to River taskforce or working groups focused on clean water and resilience for our community
  • "Adopt" Green Stormwater Infrastructure sites and help with maintenance
  • "Adopt" trails and help with maintenance

Check our website for more ways to become involved.

Warren Falls 2