Sunday, October 11, 2009

Woonsocket Falls – October 10th

Its too bad that we teach kids in summer camp not to stand in canoes.  Canoe polers stand in the middle of 16 – 17 ft. tandem canoes and propel themselves forward using 10 –12 ft. poles. It’s a great way to move up shallow, fast moving water that would be difficult to ascend with a paddle – and it’s a lot of fun!

I am planning to do a couple of days at the New Boston release on the Farmington River next weekend. Saturday I’ll pole the lower Bear's Den section with ACA Canoe Poling group. Sunday I’ll break out the whitewater boat for an end-to-end run from the Otis Reservoir down to Bear's Den.

Its been a while since I’ve done any canoe poling, so I decided to do get a little practice yesterday down at River Island Park.  I poled upstream from the Bernon Street Bridge to the Woonsocket Falls Dam. The water level was low (2 ft, 400 cfs), but there were some nice features to practice on.

Compared to some of the more experienced polers, I am definitely a rookie. My first attempt going up this section was a little rocky (pun intended), but I did make it up eventually. My second attempt was a little smoother.  I took a break at the top to get some pictures of the Woonsocket Falls Dam through the arches of the South Main Street Bridge. That’s a perspective that you don’t see very often.

I’ll still be the rookie next weekend, but hopefully I’ll be able to get the boat up the easier rapids without too much walking.

My pictures of the Woonsocket Falls

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