DOUG SPALDING LANDSCAPE PHOTOGRAPHY

                                                     East Branch of the Sebasticook River-Sebasticook Lake to Corinna                                                       

This section of the East Branch of the Sebasticook River runs from Corinna to the inflow of Sebasticook Lake in Newport. As with many of my trips, the launch and takeout point are the same. In this case I've not found a good spot upstream to get in and out of this part of the river.

Leaving your car at the ample parking area on the County Rd, launch into the lake. This launch spot shows some glacial scrape and the ledge you're launching on can be rough on the bottom of the boat. The other side of the road is tricky to launch into because itís a muddy drop-off.  After launching you'll pass under the bridge. I had to duck because of all the rain this summer, but stay to the right of the channel and you should be able to ride under the bridge.  In the fog it may be hard to detect the best route so stay close to the right-hand side of the river. The water shallows but a canoe will pass through the water plants easily enough. 10 minutes into the trip the reeds present a passage into the wider part of the stream. You may hear the ospreys and kingfishers before you see them hunting for fish.

About 30 minutes into this trip I came to an island covered with cattails. From a distance the cattails seemed to be covered in whitish fur. On closer examination the Ďfurí turned into thousands of bank swallows resting on the slender reeds. They didnít fly until I was quite near them. I've not seen such numbers of bank swallows in years. It explained why there were no biting insects bothering the day I made this trip.

Staying to the right of the stream you can explore several inlets. One of them is the outlet from Alder Stream in Corinna and the other is the East Branch coming from Corundel Pond in Corinna. Neither is navigable to the ponds because of the trees beavers have dropped into the streams, but all the inlet streams are intriguing. One gets the sensation of being in Florida swamps as the channels narrow up and the overhanging trees close in above you.

The return trip had a bald eagle overhead and a pair of loons close by. I suspect they were there on the way upstream but the fog kept visibility low on that leg of the trip. A deer silently slipped into the stream to swim out to a small island as I passed by in the canoe.

To get to the launch site, travel north on Rt7 out of Newport. About 5 miles from Newport turn right on the County Rd. At about one and a half miles on the right you'll see the parking area.

 As always, remember to clean any vegetation off your boats before you leave the area so as not to transport invasive plants to the next body of water you visit. 

Enjoy your paddling Ė see you on the water

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