As an avid kayaker who enjoys nothing more than floating my life away, I highly recommend taking a ride along the Paskamansett River in Dartmouth.

It's not a secret, but it's Dartmouth's best-kept gem in my opinion.

Now, if you're just starting out, I wouldn't recommend this trail for there are some windy sections and minor, yet mighty, rapids towards the end of the river. Trust me, I took on a bit of water on my first rodeo.

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The trip is about an hour long and the best part about it is that you're floating along with the downstream current, so it's minimal effort. That is, of course, until you have to paddle through the rough fast-paced current at the end of your journey, but only for a short period of time, somewhere between five to 10 minutes.

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Before we began our trek, we left our vehicles down by the finish line off of Rock O' Dundee Road parking lot, next door to the Wild Honey Café. From there, we drove back to the launch point at Paskamensett Park, along the river's edge, and made our way south.

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Filled with winding turns and narrow passageways, the trip alone is everything but boring. Some parts are a bit overgrown with brush and tree branches, but you can easily squeeze and duck underneath them. After all, that's all part of the adventure.

Google Maps

Eventually, as you pass the small rapids, you'll float out into a wide area where you'll finish your joyride at the Rock O' Dundee Road parking lot where the Paskamansett River meets the Slocum. This is where you need to be extra cautious as your exit point is located within 20 feet of the dam that separates the two Dartmouth rivers. At this point, you'll be able to simply pull your kayaks out of the river and load back up with ease.

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Again, if you're just starting out, I wouldn't recommend it until you feel more comfortable with your kayak as there are some areas where you could easily tip.

As always, make sure you have a life jacket with you and it's always a good idea to pack a plastic water bottle for the trip.

Lastly, I suggest that if you have a kayak that's over 10 feet long to take caution as some of the river banks are narrow, making it difficult to navigate the winding areas.

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Best of luck and please respect the river and the surrounding woodland area. It's a beautiful place to kayak, so soak in nature and be kind to Paskamansett.

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