Trip OverviewIf you're looking for a peaceful, relaxing paddle through pristine marshes and woods, this is the place for you. Bantam River is a quite small river (more like a stream) that goes between Bantam Lake and a very small pond.
From the launch site, I've read that it's about 2.5 miles to the lake. We went in the other direction and it was about 0.5miles to the small pond.
At the launch site, the lake is downstream (to the left) and the small pond is upstream (to the right). We chose to go upstream and our paddle was incredibly serene as paddled through the marshes amongst the blooming wildflowers, water lilies, grasses, and cat-tails. We saw a heron and perhaps a pelican and many other birds.
For a short distance, we paddled alongside a large beaver which reminds me that soon after we launched upstream, there was a water-level beaver dam to get past. This wasn't too difficult in our plastic kayaks.
The paddle to the pond is about half a mile - you will know you're nearly there when you pass under a hiking trail bridge.
When we returned to the launch site, a family was returning from a canoe paddle downstream. When I asked one of the little boys if he had liked it, he responded that it was dark and scary. This leads me to believe, that going downstream to the lake, the paddle must go through one of the dark forests that's in the region. We look forward to returning so we can paddle in that direction the next time.
Accommodations:No facilities other than the parking and posted map.
Directions:I-84 East to Rte. 7 north, to 202 East. Follow to Bantam, turn right into White's Woods Memorial Foundation (past grocery store). Follow road to end, turn right on White's Woods Road. Go over bridge, river launch area is just at the other end on the right. Parking for about 7-10 cars.
- Skill Level: Beginner
- Water Type: River/Creek (Up to Class II)