Showing posts from October, 2018

The Little Bridge At Last

Certainly not the most impressive bridge I've paddled to and under but it did prove the most elusive.  Many times I'd tried to reach the footbridge (above) but on each previous occasion one too many beaver-built obstacles persuaded me to abort short of reaching the bridge.  However yesterday, the Tully River's generous water levels convinced me to make, yet another, attempt.  From the north end of Long Pond I proceeded further north and ascended a horseshoe-shaped beaver dam near the overhead power lines.  It was then I heard voices and, soon after, encountered two paddlers heading downstream.  When asked how far they'd made it they answered "to the footbridge" and that was all it took to inspire my pushing onward.  The two paddlers looked familiar and it occurred to me I'd paddled with them before (later in the day I'd encounter them again near the river's confluence with Lawrence Brook)... At the second encounter I'd surprise myself (an

Busted Dam at Damon Mill

For many years paddlers wishing to traverse the Assabet River through West Concord, MA have been confronted with a broken dam at the Damon Mill (pictured above in 2017).   Not anymore as the old broken dam has been removed (photo below taken 10/20/18)... While driving along Route 62 the other day I noticed something different out of the corner of my eye.  Turned around, drove into the parking area behind the mill, and found the dam is no more... The river passing by the mill is now at least twice and, more probably, three times as wide as it formerly was. The old view looking upriver... Yesterday's view upriver... Most that paddled through the old narrow opening will remember this rock formation that lurked in about the middle of the passageway... Thanks to the work of an excavator that was still on site, the need for dodging the rock has been greatly reduced.   With the demolition equipment still there, I suspect the broken dam was only recently removed.

Upper Valley Rendezvous

It's been a long time since I last slept on the ground when camping, and I confess to having become quite accustomed to the comfort of a cot inside a spacious cabin tent...aka "car camping".  When a friend, Erik, mentioned a multi-day paddling/camping trip on the Connecticut River's Upper Valley section, I wondered if I'd be able to handle "roughing it" once again.  In joining canoeists Conrad, Erik, Bill, and Jonathan (above) this past Columbus Day weekend I put my smallest tent and sleeping pad to the test. We launched from beneath the Route 302 bridge in Woodsville, NH and, before beginning our downriver trip, paddled a short distance upstream to where the Ammonoosuc River passes beneath the Bath/Haverhill Covered Bridge before its confluence with the Connecticut... The confluence of the Ammonoosuc and Connecticut rivers played a tragic role back in 1759 during the French and Indian Wars.  According to this sign located 2 miles downriver and a

September's Balance

The balancing act of the immature male wood duck (above) served to remind me of how balanced my September paddling was between old haunts and new waterways. One beautiful late summer afternoon on the Sudbury River in Lincoln, MA this white-tailed deer kept its eyes closed and seemed to be drinking it all in... On the Nashua River at Petapawag a heron locked in deep thought... A few unusual containers were encountered such as this old bottle peeking out from the Assabet River's muddy bank in Stow, MA... ...the mud perhaps helping to preserve it in pristine shape... ...or possibly it was the staying power of Clorox bleach. This small container floating down the Assabet and also in Stow, MA might be worth a few bucks... Usually seeing a Dunkin Donuts container means Styrofoam or plastic.  Not in this instance however... ...with this rugged and re-usable container found in the Concord River in Concord, MA. With September being a month of transition a few t