Friday, August 22, 2008

Assabet River - Egg Rock to Westvale & Return

Taking advantage of this afternoon's beautiful weather I trash patrolled the Assabet River from Egg Rock up to Westvale and back. The Assabet makes a nice choice on a day like today for it offers a considerable amount of shade.
River levels have dropped quickly over the last week so many of the rocks are beginning to reappear.
Approaching the mouth of Nashoba Brook, I recovered 3 double-tube epoxy sets that might have come from the construction at the Warner Pond dam.
Reaching the MBTA Commuter Rail bridge in Concord Junction, the river begins to present the paddler with a series of obstacles to navigate. Most are due to trees that have blown down.
At Pine Street, I was surprised to find that all of the bridge supports are gone and the river is wide open for the first time in years. I happily paddled through and negotiated the series of obstacles behind Thoreau School and Cousin's Field. At the large blowdown below Westvale, I was surprised, once again, by being able to paddle the narrow gap at river right with no trouble. This was the first time I was able to get through here without using the river left channel that is only full at near flood stage. When I made the turn to the right, I could see the Route 62 bridge at Damondale, but had to turn around just below the Damondale sluiceway due to another tree across the river.
As usual, the trip back downriver was an easy paddle and provided many encounters with blue herons, Canada geese and a curious doe downstream of Dodge Rock. The Cardinal flowers continue to put on their show.
My trash count for the day was 14 empty containers bringing my YTD total to 1659.

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