Saturday, April 21, 2012

Kayaking in the Monadnock Region

Paula and I may be novice kayakers but that hasn't stopped us from getting out on the ponds and rivers of the Monadnock Region and having a great time.  Kayaking is a great way to see places that would otherwise be inaccessible.  The season is off to an early start because of the beautiful mid-April weather and we hope it will last well into the fall.
Paula on MacDowell Lake in early spring
To answer the first question, you cannot kayak the Nubanusit behind the B&B, there are several good sized falls close by and places where it is too shallow.

However, the Nubanusit originates just 1.5 miles up the road at the 165 acre Edward MacDowell Lake and this is a great spot very close by to drop your oars in.  You could easily spend an hour or two exploring the coastline and bird watching.  We have also heard there is a small waterfall somewhere on the lake.

Yesterday Paula was unavailable but a friend of ours was interested so we drove the ten minutes up to the covered bridge in Greenfield and launched the kayaks on the Contoocook River at Powder Mill Pond.  We started by paddling "up" the Contoocook for about a half hour.  We spotted ducks, red wing black birds, and a couple of beavers.  They really got our attention when one slapped the water when diving.

At that point we turned around and let the current encourage us back downstream, past the boat launch and into 435 acre Powder Mill Pond.  That required going under the scenic County Covered Bridge.  We spent about an extra hour paddling around and up to the railroad bridge while taking in views of Crotched Mountain.  A look at the map when we got home made us realize we had just barely scratched the surface, we could have traveled much farther up the Contoocook and there was much of Powder Mill Pond we didn't see.

There is no doubt we will be back to both places to do some more paddling this summer but a quick look at the regional map excites us to think about all the nearby places there are to explore including 380 acre Contoocook Lake, 228 acre Lake Skatutakee, 250 acre Thorndike Pond and 715 acre Nubanusit Lake, the Ashuelot River in Keene and many others.

If you are considering coming to the area this summer and would like to try some kayaking, there are a few places you can rent kayaks and canoes from including our local EMS store in Peterborough and Pelletiers Sports in Jaffrey.

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