Currently this is my favorite place to paddle, and has been for about a month now. That says a lot about a place considering my ADD like attitude with paddling locations. But this place is perfect, it has everything you would want or need in a paddle and all with easy access.
The Launch site:
For the Sakonnet paddle we launch from the harbor. Experience paddlers will understand that at times harbor launches can be more dangoures then dropping off a cliff for a seal launch due to boat traffic. Not the case here. This harbos is small, protected and perfect. Boat traffic is limited to a small fishing fleet, and smaller 20-30 foot saling and motor boats. The public launch is a sandy beach that you can load up with 30 kayaks (if you were forced to paddle in a group that large, point being there is room) making for a great and easy seal launch. Keep an eye on the boats as you cruise through the harbor, as boats are bigger then us and hurt if they hit you.
The Paddle Options:
Leaving the harbor you have 3 basic choices:
If you head to the right you will find yourself paddling in the Sakonnet River. Beutifull scenery with farm fields, and great small ponds and coves. A very easy paddle suitable for anyone.
Heading streight accross bring you over the river to Middletown (if you then continue through the woods you will find my grandmothers house, sorry bad joke). This crossing can be sketchy at times with cross currents creating funny water and more boat traffic coming from harbors further up the river. Be cautious. This is for experience paddlers only, you don't need to be an expert but you need to know what is going on.
Heading to the left is where all the fun is. Coming around the breakwater and paddling streight out to the ocean you will see the light house and West Island. There are plenty of rock gardens and reefs to play on here. The break is great and definately worth the ride. This is an area for those looking for a thirll. You can go and make an easy paddle just shooting around West Island, however it is more fun if you are willing to put on a helmet and run into and preferably over some rocks. There is also a secret surf spot around here that is perfect. Lately I have been getting up to 20-30 second rides in my kayak. Amazing place to go and play, unfortunately it is a secret so I can't tell you where it is, only hint that it is worth looking around whily your paddling. Perhaps some sort of horse shoe shaped beach would give you a good break to paddle, hint hint wink wink.
Take rt 24 to the Little Compton Exit, and follow the road streight out to Sakonnett.
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