Boat, Eat, Rummage, All In A Day: Connecticut River Valley VT-NH
Load up your trunk: you’ll need water, lots of it. Juice or Gatorade, maybe. Picnic fare in a small cooler (the day may be hot). Your safari shirt, hat, camera, water-sensible pants, shades, and shoes that can get wet. To a DCMBer—62+, no less—this will be full-on fun.
Into the Riverview Farmstand, on the way, to fortify yourself with berries. Berries on board, south you go again. Locate NorthStar Canoe and Kayak.
For a not-too-bad-on the budget sum ($30 per person at this writing), you’re going to rent a floating mode of transportation (namely a canoe or kayak), including a PFD and paddle, and you’re going on a shuttle ride to the put-in.
The beauty of this setup—aside from the scenery—is that the Northstar will shuttle you upstream. Hey, hey, hey, you’ll be getting off easy for your morning exercise—a sine qua non feature of a Muddy Bootser’s day—’cos nature will be carrying you along.
And, no, no lessons required. Just pick up your paddle and go with the flow, so to speak. Oh, oh, Muddy Boots forgot: put on your PFD and do it up. Last thing we all need adrift is a 62 plusser with a limited budget.
You are assumed to have made reservations for this treat of a trip. If Northstar is booked, try Great River Outfitters, on the VT side a little further up the river from Northstar. And hey, Great River may give you a more attractive option, so check it out.
Organize your boat
And yourself, and give it a go on the Connecticut River. Unless you want to put yourself in the awkward state of leisurely zooming, putter hither and yon: wildlife may be watching. Return in a couple of hours—or three or four—to the place where you began.
If you haven’t driven over the Cornish-Windsor covered bridge, the longest in the world, now’s your chance.
Willy nilly make it happen, before you make tracks north on the Vermont side of the Connecticut River. I-91 is the advised route. Keep your eyes skinned for the White River Junction exit and stay focused once you get there: you want Route 5 north, going downhill.
Forgot the victuals or need a second lunch? Load up at the Co-Op, smack on your way. Then truck your goodies to Wilder’s Kilowatt North riverside park where there are some nice shady picnic tables. Scarf every morsel.
That Muddy Boots has scheduled a budget-sensitive picnic, and this is the third one you’ve had in as many days, alternatively settle for light fare in the rehabbed town of White River Junction (turn right at the light in front of the Co-op, going over the river and under the railroad). You’ll have a choice of the Tucker Box, Tip Top, Boho, BBQ, or pizza. Probably a few others. Wander around and you’ll almost certainly come up with something.
By post-prandial contentment, drive on Route 5 from Wilder/White River Junction to Norwich. Find parking more or less near the green. If you have researched in advance, you will have checked the dates (i.e. 2nd week of July-ish) so you can get your timing right. Google for current year’s dates and details.
Paw through other people’s stuff
At the famous, historic, annual Norwich VT Rummage Sale. Immerse yourself in doing good while buying a professor’s old been-to-graduate-school teddy bear, a dead horse’s bridle, or a white wedding dress cast off by someone’s fifth ex-wife.
Photo Credits.Featured image and top.. Kayaks: CC BY 2.0 by Montgomery County Planning. Strawberries: CC BY 2.0 by HighLimitzz. Woman Enjoying a Kayak: CC BY 2.0 by Barrett Hall. Bald eagle: CC BY 2.0 USFWS Midwest via Flickr. Moose: CC BY 2.0 by Schizoform via Flickr. Black bear: CC BY-SA 2.0 by Peupleloup via Flickr. Wild turkeys: CC BY 2.0 by Rasmus Bøgeskov Larsen via Flickr. Rummage sale: CC BY-ND 2.0 by Mike Wright. Clothing Optional sign: CC BY-ND 2.0 by Chris Coyier.