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Around this time normally in Connecticut, rivers are going back to normal flows after April. This year though, we’ve been lucky to get rain… lots and lots of rain. In fact, my home playspot at Tariffville Gorge, which runs at usually around 2 feet, has barely dropped below 3 since March! Now normal people might complain about the rain, and flood warnings every week, but no one has ever accused kayakers of being normal.Since my recent trip out to Reno for the river fest (thanks again to Sage Donnelly and her family for having me!) its been non stop high water runs, wave boating, and creeking for two weeks!

Me and my friend, Hailey Thompson, who’s going to Coast Guard Academy but stays at my house on some weekends, have managed to hit some of the Connecticut and Massachusetts best stuff in just a few weekends thanks to all this rain. We got to Tariffville a few times, once at 6.5 (keep in mind, average flow is 2). It proved to be an awesome run with some insane green waves and one massive rapid with a monster hole right at the bottom… such a good time! Another time we got there at around 5 feet, and in the rapid where the normal small hole playspot is we found some amazing waves! The only danger was a big hole right below the best wave, which if you swam out would result in getting washed far down stream through some fairly serious stuff… not fun! One of my friends actually ended up getting destroyed in the hole and losing his boat! Definitely a feature to respect.


But big water wasn’t all that was there with all the rain! I also got a chance to hit some of the better creeks around! One weekend I went to the Natchaug… its a sweet short class III/IV run with some awesome creeking practice. Tons of tight lines, fun boofs, a micro eddies to play around with on the way down. There were some sweet splat rocks we found, as well as a great few chances to work on my ear dip! We got 5 laps on it, as its just a short quater mile carry to get the chance to run it again! The next weekend I went to Hubbards Brook in MA… this was an awesome class V creek! It hardly ever runs, but we caught it right after the rain and it was going off at a sweet flow! Hubbards has a bit of everything… some sweet boofs, little waterfalls, rockslides, limboing under trees that are right over nasty rapids… and then theres the big one of the run. Michauds Falls, a 10 foot drop the jets out onto a manky rockslide full over big holes and exploding rooster tails. Looking at it, it looks incredibly nasty. When you run it, its one of the most fun drops I’ve done… after you take your stroke off the edge of the drop, the rapid rockets you through before you know it! Its just a blur of white. Definitely one of my new favorites!


Well that was my awesome few high water weekends! I’m pumped to be teaching at a Jackson clinic with team members Alex Toth, Dave Su, and Jim Sullivan this weekend, and then off to CO for the GoPro Mountain Games! I’ll see you on the river!

-David Silk