Mass Rivers Right Now?

Hell. Have any of the Mass natives been out and about yet? Mrs. and I are looking to do some beginner-friendly flat water paddling this Friday. I know that the rivers have been draining a lot of water over the past week but I was wondering if any of you veterans thought that the Merrimack near Lowell (above or below the dam) or, more likely, the Concord, Asabat or Charles might be ready for some LEISURELY paddling yet or should we just find a nice pond and call it a day?

A little North of you in NH, everything is open and ready. Ponds, rivers, streams.

Concord, Sudbury, Assabet

– Last Updated: Apr-07-10 7:52 AM EST –

Concord, Sudbury and Assabet are all still very high.

You can't get under some bridges. The current is still very strong on the Assabet.

There are probably wide areas near Wayland and Fairhaven Bay that are safer. Remember to wear your PFD. It is the law until 15 May, but it is largely ignored.

I have heard that the amount of raw sewage in the Merrimack is not insignificant.

Merrimak is…
>I have heard that the amount of raw sewage in the Merrimack is not insignificant.<

Gross. Completely un-thought of and completely gross. I guess there is no reason that we can’t hit up a local pond and have just as much fun. Neither one of us has the skilz to “run” any thing just yet.

Ditto what w/c said.

– Last Updated: Apr-07-10 8:45 AM EST –

I drive over the Sudbury in Concord twice a day and, while not as high as it was last week, it's still as high as I've ever seen it stay for this long.

If you're willing to drive a bit farther west out Rte.2, e-mail me for a couple of nice beginner-friendly flat water suggestions.

The Concord, Sudbury, Ipswich, Shawsheen or some of the ponds in Harold Parker State Forest in N. Andover

I have not been on any of these this spring. Too many other places to paddle!

But all of these have fairly slow current (none in Harold Parker) and with a little care might make for a nice paddle.

The Concord in Bedford off Rt 225 is wide and slow. I’d head upstream from the launch and let the current, mild as it is take you back when you want.

The Sudbury at the Lincoln Canoe Launch on Rt 117. I’d try to gage the current there if paddling with beginners. Upstream is nice and has the advantage of an easy return. Down stream brings you quickly to Fairhaven Bay where you are not likely to feel any current at all. But you will have to paddle the short distance against the current to get back to the canoe launch.

The Ipswich by Bradly Palmer State Forest on the Topsfield Ipswich line would be another place to paddle upstream and let the current carry you back.

The Shawsheen above the dam in Ballardvale (Andover) would be another up stream and back that I’d take a beginner on.

Harold Parker has two ponds that might make a nice current free paddle. Sterns Pond is easy to get to by taking Harold Parker Road off of Rt 114. Field pond is larger and has access to the campground. That is accesable from Harold Parker Road off of Rt 125. Note that the two Harlod Parker Roads are not directly connected.