Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Assabet River - Paddling to the Mall

Yet another mild day with temperatures above 65 degrees combined with water levels that remain high, tempted me to see if I could paddle from Hudson Center to the Solomon Pond Mall.  Two other times I tried but was stopped, short of the mall, by trees that had fallen across the river. 
After launching behind the Fire Station in Hudson, I headed upriver as ominous looking clouds blocked the sun (photo at left).  Weather forecasters said to ignore them and I did so with no unfortunate consequences.
Trash was plentiful in the launch area and I encountered trash passenger 7,000 before reaching the footbridge.  Here's the lucky devil bobbing for his last time...

Just before reaching Route 495, at the spot where the river divides into 4 narrow channels, I was able to paddle through the opening second from the right.  On other occasions I had to portage here due to shallow water.
As I approached the Bigelow Street bridge in Berlin I came upon some internal organs and, nearby, what appears to be a deer hide floating in the river...


Under the bridge were the animal's entrails.  I don't know the ins and outs of deerhunting, but I thought dead deer had to be brought to a deer check station before being butchered.

Now, having crossed from Middlesex into wild Worcester County, I encountered a tiny bit of whitewater near Kelsey-McAllister Park...
Paddling up through it got my blood flowing a little faster.  Soon I was nearing the mall and saw this television set making a bad picture...

Near the Dingley Conservation area a fallen tree blocked my passage, but looking up on the embankment I noted my proximity to the Solomon Pond Mall...

Not really needing anything from Macy's store, I enjoyed my PB and J before turning around and heading back to Hudson.  More critters were seen on the downriver trip, such as this big fellow...

Between the north and soutbound bridges of Route 495, a mink popped out from the rip-rap with a mouthful of leaves.  A beaver was seen where the river splits into 4 openings, and a belted kingfisher joined me near Hudson's Riverside Park.

I wonder how many other folks, returning from the mall today, had the wide open travel lane that I did...

My trash haul of 99 at the takeout...

There were 64 recyclable containers (15 redeemable) and 35 pieces of miscellaneous rubbish such as styrofoam cups and plastic bags.
Combining this with a modest haul from yesterday's trashpedalling on the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail, with Mrs. Trashpaddler, brings the YTD total to 7075...




2 comments:

Claire said...

Steady River

Suasco Al said...

Claire, Thanks for the link. I enjoyed reading her post and will look for the book.