Many, many moons ago I first visited Maine when my Boy Scout Troop came up for a two week canoe trip through the lakes in the Moosehead Lake region. The calmness and serenity I experienced during those two weeks have stuck with me to this day (as have the memories of eating freeze dried food for two weeks.) There is something about being on the water in a canoe or kayak, smoothly gliding through the water, the quiet rhythm of your paddle strokes.
Many, many years later when we moved to Maine, one of the first purchases I made was an Old Town canoe. That, and a pair of LL Bean boots, somehow helped me connect with my new home. I just felt like that’s what you do when you move to Maine. You buy some kind of watercraft. It’s in the Maine DNA.
This year, as our children keep growning, and trying to balance four people in a canoe is getting comical, we purchased our first kayak. Its brought back many memories of kayaking down the Delaware River along the New York state border. Its interesting how strong my memories are of paddling.
The first question that came to my mind after buying our canoe was “where can I go paddling?” (You would have thought that I would have done some research ahead of time.) Even around the Portland area, there are rivers and lakes everywhere, but as a newbie to the state of Maine I had no idea if you could just pull the canoe off the top of your car and plop it in any body of water you see. Its taken me a few years to understand that isn’t too far from the truth.
For many years our go to locations have been the Royal River in Yarmouth, and the Tenny River in Raymond. Our children have enjoyed watching fish and turtles swim by, and dragonflies landing on the canoe to catch a free ride.
At the end of the MaineToday article is a link to a map of public launches in the Sebago Lake area. For any new paddlers in Southern Maine this is a treasure map!
Enjoy, and happy paddling!