Monday, December 27, 2010

Pawcatuck – Shannock to Richmond – December 26th

We were originally talking about going to T’ville yesterday, but with a snowstorm approaching, we decided to stay local instead. At Jim’s suggestion, we ended up padding the Pawcatuck River from Shannock to Richmond. This is a section that I hadn’t done before, so it sounded good to me.

I met Jeff and Jim at the Richmond Fishing Area around 9:00 and we ran the shuttle up to Shannock. The run is about 4 miles long and has a little bit of everything – flatwater, quickwater and a few easy rapids. The level was low but fluid – 100 cfs, 2’ on the Wood River Junction gage; 75 cfs, 1’ on the Kenyon gage. Snow was just starting to fall as we reached the put in.

Just downstream from the put-in in the Shannock Village are the rapids of the reconstructed lower Shannock Falls. A 2’ drop at the end of the rapids would be fun if it wasn't for a large boulder placed in the middle of the river just downstream. This boulder was supposedly placed there to provide a rest eddy for the fish, but I suspect more than a few boats will get pinned on it. Due to the low water, and the mid-stream boulder, we decided to line this section.

The next mile is flatwater leading to the Route 122 bridge and the easy rapids in the old Carolina Mill Raceway. We did two runs through the raceway, and then began picking our way through the blow downs until we reached the Carolina Canoe Campsite. As we took a break, Jim lit a small fireplace – a nice treat on a snowy day. Its amazing how much heat a small fire can produce.

The snow was falling heavily by the time we got back on the river. We headed down to the Richmond Fishing Area where we ran the dam and did a little surfing in the playspot. By this time, the roads were starting to look bad, so we loaded up the boats and headed home to sit out the storm.

My Pictures
Trip Description from Rhode Island Blueways
Richmond Fishing Area from Google Maps
Kenyon Gage
Wood River Junction Gage

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