Kenduskeag Stream Canoe Race

Stream Conditions Report #1 - Kenduskeag and Souadabscook

Here's a stream levels report which can be taken with a grain of salt, but I've decided to post it anyway as I am receiving many queries from out-of-towners looking to do the race. They want a general idea as to what they can expect this year, so here goes!

Much can change between now and April 19 as we know. There's still a good amount of snow and ice to melt off, and we may be in for a rainy weekend. We'll have to see how much rain we get during the week leading up to the race. It's worth noting that many veteran paddlers do not even bother to scout the stream until a day or two before the race. Yup, it can change that quickly. Therefore, a final stream conditions report will be posted on the eve of the race (Friday). Stay tuned!

But just for kicks, here are some videos of the Kenduskeag stream as of Thursday, April 10:

Six Mile Falls Video - My initial observation is that it's looking good. Not quite as high as last year, although as with last year, there is some noticeable flooding in the field near the Hudson Road where the vultures usually gather. While the flooding is not as bad as it was last year, it could limit spectator access. Lots of ice chunks coasting through. (Pat Davis could probably give us a better insight as he lives nearby and knows the stream well).

Shopping Cart Video - Water level is high enough that you can't stand on the banks easily, and there's a good swift current at the Shopping Cart but not as much of of that "hungry hydro scary water" that we saw last year. (Here's a photo from last year to give you an idea). As a side note, I'm told the Valley Stream bridge is undergoing renovations and will be out of service until June. Also, the parking area closest to the Shopping Cart (down the road from the Harlow Street Bridge) is torn up and closed off - so parking is not available there. Keep this in mind if you need someone to pick you up in that area after a trial run of the stream.

Flour Mill Video - This is a mandatory portage, so it's nothing a paddler would worry about. I just thought I'd toss it in here for the heck of it. Note that the boulder in midstream in this video was completely submerged at this time last year, so the water levels, while very good, are not as high this time around. For now, anyway!

Souadabscook Stream Video - Last but not least, if you are doing the Souadabscook Stream Canoe race (aka "The Sou") the day after tomorrow, I've included a short video from the Emerson Mill bridge. Lookin' good! I think this will be a fun race. A lot of the rocks are covered nicely, seems to be a good strong current there. There was a choppy section just downstream from the bridge with some decent standing waves. Can't remember if it was like that last year or not.

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