Kenduskeag Stream Canoe Race

Maine Whitewater #2: Passy River Race

The Passy River Race is scheduled for this Saturday, April 2nd, at 11am.

And so is an early April nor'easterner! Good thing I didn't put my snowplow into storage; we could see several inches of snow or rain (or both) on Saturday morning. It won't stop a bunch of people from having a good time on the water, however.

The Passy is hosted by the Waldo County YMCA, where you can find more information. But here's the rundown:

Passy River Race 2011

Time:
11am start

Place:
Savage Road, Littlefield Farm in Waldo, Maine (outside of Belfast)

Course:
Course: Race starts at the Littlefield Farm. The first mile is flatwater with many curves. Course passes under a cement bridge to another mile of flat water followed by a short stretch of Class II rapids. A two-mile stretch of flat water to the Rolerson’s bridge, then Class I, II and III whitewater for a mile and a half, leading to a flatwater stretch to the finish.

Registration:
Call (207) 338-4598 to register, or stop by the Waldo County YMCA. Cost per paddler is $20, first 180 registrants will receive a t-shirt. Register for the race and be entered in a drawing for a brand new Old Town canoe!

Comments

Maine Whitewater #1: St. George River Race

St. George River Race - photo by Michael Alden














UPDATE:Race results from the St. George may be viewed here.

The 2011 Maine whitewater season is upon us. Woo-hoo!

The St. George River Race kicks things off this Saturday, March 26th, at 11am.

The St. George is one of two races hosted by the Waldo County YMCA, where you can find more information. But here's the rundown:

St. George River Race 2011

Time:
11am start

Place:
Searsmont, Maine (Rt. 131 bridge)

Course:
Course: Race starts at St. George Bridge in Searsmont Village. Three miles of dead water, 1 mile of rapids, 2 miles of dead water and curves with one Class III drop. This race has Class II – III rapids (plus or minus depending on the water level.)

Registration:
Call (207) 338-4598 to register, or stop by the Waldo County YMCA. Cost per paddler is $20, first 180 registrants will receive a t-shirt. There will also be a drawing for a brand new Old Town canoe!


Comments (3)

The Sou & The Marsh

Maine's Whitewater Weekend was a blast (as it always is). Cloudy skies and cooler temperatures didn't deter these hardy paddlers. (Or is it 'hearty'? I was never clear about this, and a Google search for the correct usage is of no help because other people seem to be equally perplexed....)



Souadabsook Stream Canoe Race
Held in Hampden, this is often a wild and woolly ride! The stream seemed to be at a nice level this year. Last year, it was a bit too much, and many people portaged the trickier areas. But not so this year - people seemed to take glee in "tackling" the tricky areas and it looked like a good time was had by all.
65 registrations this year at the Sou, according to this Bangor Daily News article.

* * * *

Marsh Stream Canoe Race
Why this particular race isn't 10x more popular than it is, I'll never know! I really enjoy watching this particular race, so I'll have to get out the boat and take a shot at it next time around.

The Marsh is one of those "dark horse" whitewater river races - it seems to slip under the radar for whatever reason. I don't know if this is because it falls on a Sunday (although there's a generous 1:30pm start time) or of it's because the race falls on the heels of the Souadabscook in Hampden. Back-to-back races aren't for everybody, and some people have to choose one race over another when they schedule their weekends.



All I can say is that if any of you whitewater enthusiasts out there haven't heard much about this race before, take a closer look next time. The whitewater "season" in Maine is short enough as it is; don't let these well-directed races fall by the wayside. This race is too good for that.

Kudos to the Penobscot Paddle & Chowder Society for safety work on this race - these folks really have their act together! I'm going to become a member of PP&CS.

Here's a crib sheet for future reference. The exact dates will vary, but the spring whitewater race schedule (ahead of the Kenduskeag) is usually as follows:

Last Saturday of March - St. George River Race, Searsmont
First Saturday of April - Passy River Race, Belfast
2nd weekend of April - Souadabscook Stream Canoe Race, Hampden
2nd weekend of April - Marsh Stream Canoe Race, Winterport
3rd Saturday of April - Kenduskeag Stream Canoe Race

PS - I've posted my pics of both the Souadabscook Stream Canoe race here, and the Marsh Stream Canoe race here. Hope you enjoy them!

Comments

Maine Whitewater Weekend!

Two exciting races this weekend! Thanks to the Maine Canoe & Kayak Racing Association (MaCKRO) for the following information.

I'm going to be at both races, should be a blast!

* * *



Saturday, April 10th: Souadabscook Stream Sprint & Race, Hampden
(HELMETS REQUIRED)
8:00am - Sprint and Short Course Registration, Grange Hall, Emerson Mill Rd
9:00am - Sprint Start—Manning Mill Rd bridge (finishes at Paper Mill Rd bridge)
10:00am - Short Course Start—The start will occur immediately following the
conclusion of the Sprints. Recreation area below the falls off the Paper
Mill Rd (finishes at the Hampden Water Works on Main Rd/Rte. 1A)
11:00am - Downriver Race Registration—Vafiades’ Landing, Bog Rd
12:00pm - DR Race Start—Vafiades’ Landing, Bog Rd
(finishes at the Hampden Water Works on Main Rd/Rte 1A)

Awards for all races at the Water Works following the conclusion of the DR race.

* * *



Sunday, April 11th - Marsh Stream Canoe & Kayak Race, Winterport
(HELMETS REQUIRED)
10:00am - Sprint Registration—Winterport Riverside Riders Snowmobile Club, Pine View Drive (at the intersection of Stream Rd and Rte. 139)
11:00am - Sprint Start—Launch at Pine View Dr and drift downstream to the start (finishes immediately below Roadside Drop on Stream Rd)
12:00pm - Short Course and DR race Registration—at the Loggin Rd bridge
1:30pm Short Course and DR race start at the Loggin Rd bridge (short course finishes at the railroad trestle on Stream Rd.
DR race course finishes behind a garage-type business on Rte. 1A.

Comments (2)

Passy River Race: Fun In The Sun
















The Passy River Race on Saturday was a blast. The weather was beautiful (I have a mild sunburn to prove it) and the water was truly inviting.

Over 100 paddlers participated this year. It was nice to see so many young paddlers involved in this year's race.

In part, this is clearly the result of hard work by the Maine Canoe & Kayak Racing Organization (MaCKRO) to engage young people in the sport of paddling. If the St. George and Passy River races are any indication, these efforts seem to be working!

I've posted some race photos here.

Comments (3)

Next Up: Passy River Race!
















The second chapter of Maine's all-too-brief whitewater
season begins near Belfast on Saturday, April 3rd at 11am.

Passy River Race - Saturday, April 3rd at 11am
at Littlefield Farm near Belfast

Registration: 8:30 - 10:30 a.m.

Cost: $20 per paddler

Race Location & Directions: Take Rte 7/137 NW out of Belfast. After about 3 miles, take a left on Shepard Rd. (Side note: about a half mile up Shepard Rd is where the race ends, at a spot where the river comes close to the road. You'll see lots of cars and paddlers and if in doubt, just ask someone where the start is!) Continue up Shepard Rd. At the stop sign, bear right onto Poors Mill Rd, then after about a half mile, bear right again. Continue across the bridge on Poors Mill Rd, and after about 1.5 miles, bear right onto Savage Rd (a dirt road). The start is about a half mile up Savage Rd where the river goes under the road.

Course:Race starts at the Littlefield Farm, first mile is flat water with many curves. Course passes under a cement bridge to another mile of flat water followed by a short stretch of Class II rapids. A two-mile stretch of flat water to the Rolerson’s bridge, then Class I, II and III whitewater for a mile and a half, leading to a flatwater stretch to the finish. According to race director Dale Cross, "...this river also finishes with about a mile straightaway, very wide. It’s like a stock car finish. You can see people all around you, so it’s really cool. Several boats wide could finish at the same time."
















(Source for Dale Cross quote: Bangor Daily News article).

* * * * *
Stop by the Waldo County YMCA to register for the St. George or call (207) 338-4598.

More information can be found on the
Waldo County YMCA canoe race page.

Comments

St. George River Race Sees Nice Turnout
















According to this Bangor Daily News article, over 100 paddlers took part in the St. George River Race earlier today. (The article also features a short video).

I've also posted my photos from the race here.

UPDATE: Full race results for the St. George have been posted! Download the document here. Courtesy of the Maine Canoe & Kayak Racing Organization (MaCKRO)

Comments

Baby, It's Cold Outside

A note from Jeff Owen, President of the Maine Canoe & Kayak Racing Organization (MaCKRO) on the eve of the season-opening St. George River Race:

Paddled the St. G with the clinic yesterday with a nice large group, experts and novices (and everything in between). The water level is awesome--most rocks covered, some really nice wave trains and eddy lines, but not too pushy. The race should be fun and fast.

BUT, please be extra cautious regarding proper clothing with the forecasted temperatures only in the teens or twenties for race time. Those are "dangerous cold" temperatures if you get wet anywhere where help is not immediately available. If you see paddlers on shore who have just swum, it'll be a good day to just automatically pull in and help (instead of the usual yell of "you okay?"). Let's be safe out there!


Comments

This Week: St. George River Paddling Clinic & Race!

If you're looking to try out a race or just get your sea legs back, the St. George River Race is just the ticket!

This season-opening race is always a lot of fun and there are prizes to be won. And as the St. George Race is a good 10.5 miles shorter than the Kenduskeag, it's the perfect "primer" race.

But wait! There's more. If you are new to paddling and you want to prep yourself for any of the races this spring and summer (including the Kenduskeag, of course) you can try out a paddling clinic hosted by the good people at MaCKRO (Maine Canoe & Kayak Racing Organization).

You will have to fill out an American Canoe Association (ACA) waiver form, which I have provided links for right here. You can download the waiver forms for both minors and adults. (These are PDF documents).

St. George River Race (Paddling Clinic): Thursday, March 25th at 4pm, Searsmont.

Bring the applicable waivers and your boat. Clinic is free. Experienced paddlers will guide you through the stream at your own pace. Designed for fun and for building confidence!

St. George River Race - Saturday, March 27th at 11am at Searsmont.

Registration: 8:30 - 10:30 a.m.
Cost: $20 per paddler
Race Location: Searsmont Methodist Church, Route 131, Searsmont, Maine
Course: Race starts at St. George Bridge in Searsmont Village. Three miles of dead water, 1 mile of rapids, 2 miles of dead water and curves with one Class III drop. This race has Class II – III rapids (plus or minus depending on the water level.)

* * * * *
Stop by the Waldo County YMCA to register for the St. George or call (207) 338-4598.

More information can be found on the
Waldo County YMCA canoe race page.

Comments

2010 Whitewater Season Just Around The Bend
















Captain Morgan cruises by during the 2009 race
The whitewater season in Maine is almost upon us, and this blog is officially out of hibernation for the next couple of months. Woo-Hoo!
I mean, Arrrr!

Lots to talk about in the near future, but here's a wee dram:
The St. George River Race opens things up in just a few weeks, and get this...the St. George River has already iced out. I'll have more on the St. George (including when & where) in about a week.

If you haven't pre-registered for the 2010 Kenduskeag Stream Canoe Race, what in the name of Long John Silver are you waiting for??

Whether you plan to go solo or assemble a motley-looking crew, pre-registration saves you time and money. $36 per paddler this year if you wait until race day to sign up, but only $18 per paddler if you beat the deadline (Friday, April 16th at 1pm).







Comments (1)

Kountdown To The Kenduskeag













If the Passy River Race was an indication of things to come, the Kenduskeag could be a wild & wooly ride. We'll have to keep an eye on the local precipitation over the next twelve days.

Next up: The Souadabscook Stream Canoe Race and the Marsh Stream Sprint/Race, next Saturday and Sunday, respectively.

By the way, here are my photos from the Passy last Saturday.

Comments (12)

2009 Whitewater Season Begins Next Week












Update 3/29:
Great turnout (109 boats!) at the St. George River Race in Searsmont. (Photos)

Other races, spaced one week apart after the St. George, include the Passy River Race in Belfast and the Souadabscook Stream Race in Hampden. Mackro has posted a schedule of upcoming races.

Mackro President Jeff Owen wants to attract new paddlers to the sport in Maine. MaCKRO is hosting race clinics for all novice paddlers (and anybody else who wishes to participate). The St. George River clinic will be held this Friday, March 27th at 4pm. Read about the clinics here.

Also, if you are not a member of Mackro, consider joining. There is no fixed membership fee this year; you decide how much you would like to donate when you send in your membership form. Mackro is a good resource for beginning and advanced paddlers alike.

Comments

Looking Ahead To Some Other Canoe Races














The Kenduskeag was a great way for many paddlers to welcome in the spring season. So now what?

Well, there are plenty of other races held in Maine which are on the near horizon:

5/3 - Meduxnekeag River Race - (8 miles, Houlton)

And how about this one:

5/10 - 5/11 - Aroostook River 60 Mile Canoe & Kayak Race (60 miles, Ashland to Ft. Fairfield - can be completed in one or two days.)

For more information about all of these races and many other races held in Maine, please visit MaCKRO's race calendar.

Comments

Four Whitewater Races Just Around The Bend



Today is the first day of spring. Technically. And here are four races in Maine leading up to the Kenduskeag Stream Canoe Race on April 19.



Saturday, March 29 - St. George River Race (Searsmont) - 11am. Three miles of dead water, 1-mile rapids, 2-miles dead water and curves with one Class III drop. This race has Class II-III rapids + or - depending on the water level. Phone 338-4598.

Editor's Note 3/30/08: St. George River Race photos and video have been posted on the Village Soup website.

Saturday, April 5 - Passy River Race (Belfast) - 11am. Race starts at the Littlefield Farm, first mile is flat water with many curves. Course passes under a cement bridge to another mile of flat water followed by a short stretch of Class II rapids. A 2-mile stretch of flat water to the Rolerson’s bridge, then Class I, II and III whitewater for a mile and a half, leading to a flat-water stretch to the finish. Phone 338-4598.

NOTE: for the St. George River Race, organizer Dale Cross provided this additional information:

- The St. George River is ready to be run and at a very safe level as of Tuesday, March 18.
- Free hats available to all who register.
- Free DVDs of the race to all who register
- Local cable broadcast (16,000 homes) of the race in the days and weeks following the race
- Special awards / classes for high school / college paddlers and for newcomer paddlers


And for the Passy River Race, Dale provided this additional information:

- Free longsleeve t-shirts available to all who register.
- Free DVDs of the race to all who register
- Free lunch following the race for all who register
- Local cable broadcast (16,000 homes) of the race in the days and weeks following the race
- Special awards / classes for high school / college paddlers and for newcomer paddlers

Saturday, April 12 - Souadabscook Stream Canoe Sprint/Race (Hampden)
9am (sprint), 12pm (race). Phone 234-4521.

Sunday, April 13 - Marsh Stream Sprint and Race (Frankfort - Winterport Snowmobile Club) 9am (sprint), 12pm (race).
Phone 234-2510.

* * * * *

Comments

Souadabscook Stream Race Highlight Reel















I've posted an 8-minute "highlight reel" video of the 2007 Souadabscook Stream Canoe Race on BlipTV.
Click here to watch the video.

Also, here is an article about the Sou race from the Bangor Daily News.
Comments (2)

St. George River Race: "A natural, wild time"














Less than a week to go before the St. George River Race gets underway, and it's shaping up to be a blast!

Here's an excellent article about the upcoming St. George River Race from the Waldo County Village Soup site.

UPDATE 4/2/07: And here is a post race article from the Bangor Daily News.

Comments

A Few Upcoming Races (Maine)


While we still have to get through iceout, here are a few upcoming races to keep in mind if you'd like a "primer" before the Kenduskeag:

3/31/07 (Saturday) - St. George River Race (Searsmont) - 11am.
Phone 338-4598.

4/07/07 (Saturday) - Passagassawakeag River Race (Belfast) - 11am.
Phone 338-4598.

4/14/07 (Saturday) - Souadabscook Stream Canoe Sprint/Race (Hampden) - 9am (sprint), 12pm (race). Phone 234-4521.

4/15/07 (Sunday) - Marsh Stream Sprint and Race (Frankfort - Winterport Snowmobile Club) - 9am (sprint), 12pm (race). Phone 234-2510.

Check out the Bangor Daily News interview with race organizer Dale Cross (3/20/07). These races are going to be a lot of fun!

Comments

Souadabscook Stream Race 2006



The Souadabscook Sprint & Canoe Race was held as planned this weekend in Hampden, ME. Nice to see that it wasn't cancelled.

Here's a news story about the race from the Bangor Daily News.

Congratulations to Jeff Sands!

Last but not least, here's a link to my 2006 Sou photo galleries.

Comments

College Students: Compete For Your School!

(originally posted 3/27/06)


Although it is missing from the 2006 race registration form, there's a new College Division for the 2006 Kenduskeag Stream Canoe Race (and this new College Division is applicable to all MaCKRO points races throughout this season.)

College students may compete on behalf of their respective schools for the ultimate prize: The College Cup.

You must be a member of MaCKRO (Maine Canoe & Kayak Racing Association) to compete in the College Division. There are special membership group rates available for colleges. Contact MaCKRO for more information.

Canoe race organizer Matt Dingle relayed this message:

"Only one, Unity College, has contacted me about their club joining. They did make some comment about the other colleges around here not knowing how to paddle, having buggy whip arms and that they would probably float down the stream backwards, puking in fear. But the message wasn't real clear."

Comments (2)

St. George and Passy River Races Cancelled


Unfortunately, both the St. George and Passy River races have been cancelled due to low water levels. Both races were tentatively scheduled for this weekend (April 1st & 2nd). No word on the status of races scheduled in the near future; it's still too early to tell. Stay tuned - I'll post updates as they become available.

Here's more from the Bangor Daily News.

Comments

15 Seconds of Fame: A Racer's Guide to Grabbing the Spotlight

Update 4/11/06: No TV coverage of the race this year due to low water! Six Mile Falls is likely to be a portage for many folks. So perhaps this guide can be applied in 2007.


Just a few thoughts as we count down the days to April 15. (I can't believe there are less than 30 days left until the race. And I really can't believe that it's almost been one year since the last race.)

If you are planning to do the canoe race this spring, and if you would like to grab a little media attention for yourself at Six Mile Falls, here are some suggestions:

1) Do not portage Six Mile Falls under any circumstances.

2) Wipe out at the falls. Not intentionally, of course. But nothing gets camera shutters snapping like a colossal spill into the stream. And remember, the race is televised. TV crews love a good wipeout as much as anyone else. I believe WABI TV 5 - a CBS affiliate - is covering the race. Remember to set the VCR or Tivo or whatever back home.

3) Wear an unusual costume. This is a surefire way to turn heads and camera lenses all along the course of the stream, not only at Six Mile Falls. Double extra dog dare points if you wear an oddball costume AND wipe out at the falls!

4) Short of wearing a wacky prop or costume, you can always deck out your watercraft with an eye-catching prop or ornament. The more inexplicable the prop, the better. I mean, can anyone tell me what THIS is all about:



I don't know what that thing is, but notice I have a photo of it. And I was glad to see it coming down the stream. In a traditional canoe race such as the Kenduskeag, it's always refreshing to see a little character and creativity here and there.

So there you have it. Three tried and true ways to grab the spotlight for your 15 seconds of fame. See you at the stream!

PS - Remember, you can pre-register for the race by downloading this form and mailing it in as soon as possible (deadline is April 14th at 1pm).

PSS - Also keep an eye out for the Paddling Picture Show at a Maine college campus near you.

Comments