It was very much a culture shock for me when I left my home in Connecticut to become a student in New York city and whilst I had visited there before, living in that city is so far removed from my old life back north. I had been telling my friend Anouk Govil about how much I loved Connecticut and so last month when we had a clear weekend, I took him up there to show him just how much fun could be had. I decided the best way for Anouk to experience the best of Connecticut was to take him out kayaking and he just loved it. After that weekend I thought that it might be a good idea to let you guys know where I love to kayak, so that you too can enjoy this activity should you happen to go to Connecticut.
The Housatonic River cuts through the west of the state and flows southward to the ocean making it the perfect river for some relaxing and fun kayaking. My recommendation would be to go to the northern part of the river up near Canaan where the water flows gently along and the shoreline is at its most beautiful. From your kayak you will be able to gaze across meadows and forests as they roll away from the water, the perfect place for a relaxing paddle downstream.
If you want to experience ocean kayaking then the best place for this in my view are the Thimble Islands just off south-central Connecticut. This area is actually made up by around 300 small islands, many of which are only visible in low tide. If you are up for an adventure you can head out from Stony Creek dock and take a trip of around 10 miles around these islands, discovering and exploring as you go. The water can occasionally get choppy but in the main the ocean waters are very calm and easy to paddle through.
If you consider yourself a proficient kayaker then why not head to the rapids and see how you fare? The Farmington River offers all manner of conditions for kayakers from soft and gentle waters to some pretty hefty Class II rapids. The best place to test your might is on the upper parts of the river, just before it cross state lines into Massachusetts. For those not looking for extreme rapids but still want an experience, head to Tariffville where there are some bumpy rapids but nothing that could you throw you out from your boat!
Wet and Wild
If you want to explore the wilderness then head down to Long Island Sound, where the mouth of the Connecticut River opens wide and is lined by salt marshes and gorgeous wetlands. There are all manner of eco-systems and environments here to discover and kayaks can pass above the shallow waters to explore it all.