Cathance Fever, Catch It!

Perhaps the best kept whitewater secret in coastal Maine is a three mile stretch of the Cathance River in my hometown of Topsham. Located in the northeastern, rural part of town, it is a Class II through V creek run that consists of four rapids followed by four runnable waterfalls. Most of the action occurs […]

Youth Revisited on Pleasant Mountain

Birthdays never bothered me until I turned sixty-nine. It was then that I realized my next solemn remembrance would be seventy. By anyone’s definition, seventy is old. Depending upon one’s perspective, it may not be ancient or completely over-the-hill, but seriously old. Just recently, there was a news announcement about an accident in Hampden. The […]

Geriatric Whitewater on Austin Stream

Maine has some great whitewater. Besides the well-known dam release rafting rivers like the Kennebec, Dead and Penobscot, there are dozens of excellent free flowing whitewater streams and rivers. Under normal circumstances, the best time to paddle whitewater is in the spring when April showers and snowmelt combine to provide optimum conditions. However, soaking rains […]

Merrymeeting Bay, an Oversized Bird Bath

Neither an ornithologist nor a bird watcher, I might qualify as a lowly tenderfoot birdie peeper. Observing large colorful birds like pileated woodpeckers or beautiful toucans that were prevalent during my visit to Costa Rica is very entertaining. Eagles and ospreys always get my attention. Conversely, my favorite bird is the small, vibrant puffin. Over […]

Merrymeeting Bay, an Oversized Bird Bath

Neither an ornithologist nor a bird watcher, I might qualify as a lowly tenderfoot birdie peeper. Observing large colorful birds like pileated woodpeckers or beautiful toucans that were prevalent during my visit to Costa Rica is very entertaining. Eagles and ospreys always get my attention. Conversely, my favorite bird is the small, vibrant puffin. Over […]

Large Memories on Little Suncook

Several factors make Little Suncook River in New Hampshire unique. A short, very narrow, initially intense whitewater run, it has Class III & IV rapids, a navigable dam and is frequently pockmarked with strainers. All of this excitement in three brief miles, much of which can be observed from Route 4 in Epsom. Almost every […]

Chowderheads Just Wanna Have Fun

Is there a better way for outdoor enthusiasts to spend four days than mountain hiking on a range of magnificent summits, sea kayaking along perhaps the most spectacular section of the Maine coast and biking a network of scenic, off-road trails that weave through mountains and around secluded ponds on an island paradise? That’s exactly […]

Creeking the Piscataquog

Each October the State of New Hampshire draws down Lake Horace, providing an excellent Class III/IV creek-like whitewater run on the North Branch of the Piscataquog River. Located in Weare a little west of Concord, the release attracts whitewater boaters from around New England. For several years, Penobscot Paddle and Chowder Society president, Ryan Galway, […]

Moosehead Lake Surf & Turf

Call me quixotic but I like surf and turf outdoor adventures. What’s a surf and turf? My definition is a sea kayak or canoe trip blended in with a mountain hike. While this may seem bizarre to the uninitiated, it’s an excellent way to combine three popular outdoor activities, paddling, hiking and camping. Fortuitously, Maine […]

Whitewater Adventures on the Wild, Wild West

For two days each September, the Army Corps of Engineers releases water from Ball Mountain Dam on the West River in Jamaica, Vermont. An event that attracts many Mainers, the scheduled releases provide an excellent opportunity for paddlers to experience some outstanding late season whitewater boating. The releases have evolved into a veritable whitewater festival […]