Sunday, December 27, 2009

Assabet River - Egg Rock to Thoreau School & Back

Today's weather provided an irresistible opportunity for one more "final" 2009 trash patrol.
The temperature was 52 degrees and there was light rain falling as I launched into the lower Sudbury River at high noon. Quickly reaching Egg Rock, my boat's bow swung to the left and I began ascending the Assabet River. My hope was that the river's main channel would be open and things were looking good as I passed some of the spots that have bridged over with ice in the past. The opening photo was taken just after passing Willow Island and aside from the fog/mist, my confidence for a clear passage was increasing. However, there were many floating sheets of ice that had to be avoided and there was this one location where ice reached nearly 3/4 of the way across the channel...

After passing under Route 2, I reached the spot where the moose was encountered last October. I stopped on the river's west shore to enjoy a hot cup of cocoa and reflect upon the strange event which was, without a doubt, the highlight of my paddling year. The rain had stopped and the sky was beginning to brighten.
Once back in the boat, I made good time through West Concord, easily passed under the Pine Street bridge, and reached the sandbar behind the Thoreau School. This made a good spot to turn around and allow the south wind and steady current to convey my boat downriver. The return trip was most pleasant as the sun was winning its battle with the clouds and creating some nice effects as it backlit their retreat to the north. This was especially noted as I approached the Route 2 bridge...

Seemingly much too soon, I reached my takeout location and unloaded the day's catch onto the icy ground beside my boat's hull...

The count for the day was 34 pieces of trash. Of these, 12 were recyclable (4 redeemable) and 22 were misc. rubbish such as styrofoam, plastic bags, spray paint, a prescription bottle (full of pills), a basketball, etc. My final YTD total is 5593.
Before leaving the takeout site, I watched as the victorious sun sank low behind the trees. In the twilight, I loaded my car with gear and then feeling very grateful for such a bonus day, drove home into the gathering darkness.

No comments: