Desmond and I headed out on the good old Palmer River today. We had to spend most of the morning killing time, waiting for high tide so that we could get a chance to explore all the fun little spots you can get to on the river once the water level is high enough. Prior to heading out we stopped at one of our favorite breakfast stomping grounds, The Railroad Café, for a late breakfast before getting to the river at 12:30 just in time for peak tide.
We timed it perfectly.
When we pulled in, it only took a quick glance to see that the tide was right at its peak. High tide was around the 4 foot mark today. If you can catch this river at spring tide (highest of tides) with a tide of 6+ feet, there is so much more you can explore with the overflow which works its way into the wetlands. That only happens twice a month. 4 feet up though wasn’t all that bad, and allowed us to get pretty far upstream with loads of “secret spots” as Des calls them, that we could explore. At lower tide, the river is quite limited to what you can get to, and will literally cut your trip time in half. Timing is crucial here. The higher the high tide, the longer you can take exploring the river.
I have said time and time again that I should bring a saw and clippers when we go to Palmer, but I never seem to remember to bring them. There are downed trees which will block your way on the river depending on the tide level. With a little initiative, someone (most likely me) could really clean things up and make it easier to get upstream. I’ve been stuck here in the past, having to wait for the tide to either go up or down so that we could get past certain downed limbs. Some of them you can get over on high tide, or under at low tide, but there are a few which you need one or the other, and anything aside from the is impassible. Even with the 4 foot high tide, there is a huge tree which always blocks your way and results in it being the turnaround spot. Only at seriously high tides can you manage to make it past this tree. That is the one I’ve been meaning to take a saw to. With a little work I could make it so this obstacle wouldn’t be an issue any longer. It would have to be a trip that I don’t bring Desmond along though. I don’t think it would be easy to saw with him sitting in front of me.
Even with the downed tree which we couldn’t get past, we managed to stretch this short trip to a few hours. The Palmer is incredibly quiet, which is one of my favorite parts of the river. Where its located in Rehoboth, there isn’t much aside from farm land and forest which surrounds this section. The occasion low flying plane coming from the Providence airport is the loudest sound you will hear the whole trip. If you are looking for some peace and quiet, this is definitely the place to go. And if you are not into long outings, and are just looking to take it easy for a couple hours, Palmer is the river for you.
As always, we had a great time today. The weather was great, and the breeze kept us cool. Desmond was in a great mood and we were joking around the whole trip. You can’t ask for much more. It’s days like today that remind me why I love to kayak so much.. Good times
CLICK HERE FOR THE TRIP MAP