your paddlesports destination

Selden Creek / Connecticut River in Connecticut

Trip Overview

This is my second article for this trip with a different put in and return to the same spot (previous report: Click Here). I put moderate for difficulty just because the Connecticut River does have some good current flows at times (plus tides and winds). But it can be relatively easy. Just be aware of local weather and tides.

This trip starts at the Deep River town landing, which can be reached from River Rd. in Deep River (the junc. of Rt. 154 & Rt. 80) or from Kirkland St. (Main. St. & The Piano Works Condos) on the west bank of the CT River. The landing is also the dock for a local Riverboat and the Essex Steam train has a depot there, so be aware of traffic particularly in season (May-Sept.)

There is a floating dock that I use to put in, and a cement ramp that can be used, boat traffic must be observed sometimes, but I haven't seen it to be a high use ramp.

Looking east across the river you will see Selden Island, gazing upriver about 3/8 of a mile you can observe a white house just back from the east bank of the river. This house is just to the north of the entrance to Selden Creek. So we set off from the ramp to the northeast upriver. You could depending on conditions, go upriver on the west side, slightly north of the creek entrance and then cross the river with the current, or go straight across and then paddle upstream. Just see what is going on in the area and decide for yourself.

Upon reaching the Creek entrance, everything becomes more peaceful and relaxing. If you have read my previous article, you know, if not please read the previous article to find out about the creek. I'll just advance to the exit of the creek and return to the ramp. It was another great trip down the creek though and I did see more wildlife and signs of said wildlife. I think I saw an otter slip into the water at one point, but the camera was in the waterproof pouch.

At the mouth of the creek, I turned north and paddled up river along the east bank (west bank of the island). The Island is a state forest and there are a few campsites located on the island(check a guidebook). There are some shallows right as I turned north that might be a fun spot to stop and lounge around in at the right time of year. I went north about a mile and half then headed northwest across the river to the north tip of Eustacia Island, which is directly in front of the ramp from which I started. Rounding the island it is about 5pm and just about high tide, I have traveled maybe 6 -7 miles in a bit over 2 hours. I could certainly have taken more time on this trip, there is lots more to see and side trips to take(another day), but for an afternoon paddle, this was fun.

I load up and head home, I live in Deep River so I will be back and explore more of Selden Creek and I'll try Whalebone Cove just up the river, and Hamburg Cove just down the river and more of Essex cove downstream. Quite a few daytrip options from this point on the river, a number of different put-ins available and take outs if you utilize 2 vehicles or care for a walk after a kayak trip.

A few great B & B's in the area, Riverwind in Deep River, good food available and a nice small town community area between Middletown and Old Saybrook on both sides of the river.

Try this spot if you're in the area, I think you'll like it.


Selden Creek/Island is a state forest area. There are some picnic areas and some campsites. I am unsure if there are fees for these, check a state forest guidebook. I didn't see any outhouse facilities, but I wasn't looking for any. I didn't know I would be writing this article.


None that I know of, check a State Forest guidebook.


Exit 5 [Rt.80] off Rt 9 in CT, go east from the exit into Deep River. One stop sign [go straight] and a traffic light at Main St.[go straight] this puts you on River Rd. Follow it to the town landing.


Deep River Town landing, no fee. Floating dock alongside a concrete ramp [rough concrete].


Lower Connecticut river maps and or guidebooks

  • Duration: Day Trip
  • Sport/Activity: Kayaking, Canoeing
  • Skill Level: Intermediate
  • Water Type: River/Creek (Up to Class II)
  • Group Rates: No

Locations on this Trip