Halloween Paddle on the Piscat

Yesterday was the 20th annual Halloween Paddle and BBQ on the Piscataquog River in Goffstown, NH. This was actually the first trip that I did as a new whitewater paddler back in 2005, and I have done it many times since. Its an easy trip with a nice surf wave where I have practiced air braces, bad side surfs and submarining the bow of my tandem boat.

Great day with nice weather, good food and lots of paddlers in one place. Plenty of us old fogies, but also a lot of younger folks as well - nice to see. Few more pictures here:


Have done some crazy endos and squirts out of that hole/wave myself! Have to say that is the most prominent play feature out of the Piscat run.


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Its an easy hole for kayaks. Not too bad for a tandem canoe, although you will fill it up eventually. In a solo canoe I tend to get spun sideways and window-shaded. I’ve had lots of practice doing that over the years…

Bell Buoy Lean

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If I remember correctly, that mini ledge/hole gets a little more retentive (at least for shorter ww kayaks) at lower flow levels. It acts almost like a mini lowhead dam. Can flush through more at higher flow.


The Halloween Paddle on the Piscataquog River in Goffstown, NH, seems like a great event with good weather and paddlers of all ages enjoying the trip. Kayaking experiences are shared.

I was communing with the kayakers again yesterday - this time on the class II section of the Contoocook in Henniker, NH. We did have one other open boater paddling solo. I was paddling tandem with a buddy. And of course there were 11 kayakers. Do what you gotta do. :wink:


Nice! Fond memories of the 'cook. That run was my introduction to white water, being the “home” of the annual NH-AMC white water school in spring! Also, home to some of the best BIG trout fishing in the southern part of NH.

Ironically, also where I found my Cobra ReVisions after a six year search! Henniker Center:


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Time to reminisce - this is me at the NHAMC Whitewater School back in the spring of 2005.


It was taken on the second day running Sweet Tooth on the Sugar River. I was paddling one of the club’s rental XL13’s that had been wrapped and repaired at lest once before I took it out. I didn’t do any more damage to it. This is the oldest paddling picture that I have. For the old-timers here, it was taken by old time P-netter TommyC1.

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Pretty sure I was at that one. By then, I was helping to coach the newbie ww kayakers (which I did for several years) and loaning out a couple of my ww boats for the smaller newbies. TommyC1 was, of course, helping with the openboaters. I am pretty sure Tommy was the one that had let me know about the NHAMC WW school. I met Tommy because he was also a member of NSPN. Tommy came out to some surf kayak sessions with his C1. I had some good pictures of him on the waves that were lost when Webshots went down.

Bygone but good times!


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That surf wave on the Piscat was the first time I surfed and the first trip after my school and back in 2001!
my school
Here I am in the bow running Sweet tooth at my school

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Looking good - getting ready to plant that cross draw - did you end up in the eddy behind Sweet Tooth.

I wasn’t even close - I bounced over the rock pile on the right and bounced half way downstream.

solo on the sugar
Just a quick jog to the left to miss the rock in the chute, then a hard right
to catch the eddy on river right.
I lost my student bow paddler in the eddy behind sweet tooth! Two months later
I lost my g/f, same eddy. Decided best to go solo from then on.

The only other time I have run it was as a safety boat back in 2013 - caught the eddy with no problem.


With the right partner I love tandem paddling. Good solo paddlers make the best tandem paddlers.