Narrow River: In the Middle
Had another beautiful morning paddle on the lovely Pettaquamscutt River. This time I was lucky to be joined by my bestie, a first for us (paddling together, that is)!! Until examining this handy-dandy map from Explore RI, I never knew there was a public access lot off Middlebridge Road. This spot is SO convenient for paddling the mid-sections and will do in a pinch for the Narrows if the lots on 1A are full.
The parking lot is quite big and designed for boat trailers so try to park out of the way and save the open areas (would really suck to get boxed in).
This day we launched and headed south. We had high tide and I’d been itching to check out Pettaquamscutt Cove. The cove is really shallow during low tide and you do more wading than paddling.
Google cartoon map makes it look like a gargantuan lake but in the Earth version you can see all the gorgeous shading of sand bars. Our goal this day was to circle Gooseberry Island for our round trip.
After leaving the parking lot, the river is wide open. Boat traffic can get nutty, especially on the weekend, so I recommend heading out early (timing all the variables on NR takes a college degree. Good thing I have a couple of those!). Soon you will approach the bridge on Middlebridge Road. This is also a busy area combining boats, paddlers and fishermen-people. I also recommend staying away from the fishermen-people, that could get messy.
My bestie handled it like a pro 🙂
Once under the bridge, the river gets a bit narrower which means the boats get closer to you. Because we were headed to the cove, we stayed to the right shoreline. If you plan to go the Narrows, you’d want to cross over to the left side. As you approach the cove there are lots of low lying areas and grass which means there are lots of wading birds; heron, egret and sandpipers.
There are also tons of osprey and osprey nests all along the river. Osprey dive and catch fish in the water. It is pretty cool to watch them in action.
We made our way toward Gooseberry Island then made a U-turn around it to head back. The cove is really quite large. At some point I’ll park on 1A and just plan to paddle the cove. We really only made a small dent on this outing.
The paddle back through the cove mouth was a bit challenging. Nothing in Narrow River is ever 100% easy. Back on the main river everything was easy-peasy back to the parking lot. We even paddled into some friends that were out in their kayaks (I question their judgement but I’m still friendly with those that sit and paddle). You gotta love RI.