Monday, February 29, 2016

Willimantic – February 28, 2016

Al runs the quick water
The Willimantic is one of those rivers that I usually drive by on my way somewhere else, which is too bad since it is a beautiful river.  The trick is to catch it when it has enough water to paddle, and we did that yesterday.  With last week’s rains the river came up nicely. Yesterday’s 50° temperatures were an added bonus as well.

I met Al, Jonathan, Mike, and Scott at Plains Road in Tolland for a run down the Willimantic.  The original plan was to take out at Merrow Road - about 9 miles, but Mike suggested that we continue down to a new take out on Plains Road in Mansfield making the trips about 12 miles. 

Mike getting ready to climb
into his Sopwith Camel
After running the shuttle, we got on the river around 11:00. The level was about 4.2’, 400 cfs on the Coventry gage - about the same level as the last time we were here, but it definitely seemed more fluid. The river alternates between flatwater and quickwater as it twists and turns along Route 32.  We stopped for lunch at Herring Cove – another new access point just below the Nye-Holman State Park and the Route 74 Bridge.

There are a couple of easy surf waves below the Route 195 Bridge, and we did our best to take advantage of them. We arrived at the take out at Plains Road at around 3:00, and I was home by 4:30 – great day.

Jonathan and Erik
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