Here's a list of some of the paddling venues we have visited. Most of these venues have pictures that you can view if you explore the "Photos" link.
East Brimfield Lake to Holland Pond
Long Pond Launch to East Brimfield Lake, though the Quinebaug Canoe trail to Holland Pond Beach - 8.6 miles round trip. There are 3 "canoe" stops along the way and there is a nice beach for a picnic lunch once you get to Holland Pond.
Flint Pond/Lake Quinsigamond, Shrewsbury, MA
Launch at the Flint Pond State Launch. The entrance to the boat ramp is at the traffic light at the intersection of Rt. 20 and Edgemere Blvd. Paddle under route 20 into southern end of Lake Quinsig - around southern islands - 4-5 miles typical. If one stays on the Flint Pond side, without going under route 20, the perimeter of both areas to the bridge where Quinsigamond River exits pond is just under 3 miles. Lots of lilies and some Osprey have been seen on the other side of the power line. The two sections of the Flint side are separated by a power line and a narrow strip of land; one side is open, deep water and the other is full of lily-pads, but navigable.
Lake Quinsigamond, North End, Shrewsbury, MA
There is a launch into the northern end of Lake Quinsigamond off of North Quinsigamond Avenue (next to Donahue Rowing Center). There is a fee to use that launch and an attendant is there during normal hours of operation in-season. It's not a bad spot for a weekday or evening paddle when the majority of power boats and jet skis are off the water. It's a good spot to launch if you want to do about a six-mile paddle along the shore to the southern end and back. If you like looking at the houses along shore, it's a fine place to go. If you go later in the day, you'll probably see rowing shells that launch from Donahue Rowing Center. You won't see much wildlife unless you spend time going into the weedy, lily-choked areas at the southern end,
Swift River, Cold Spring Road, Belchertown, MA
Launch on Cold Spring Road between East Rd and River Rd. We normally do the river in two parts. Upstream can be 3 - 4 miles depending on where you turn around. That will be judged by the current, water depth and trees in the water. Down stream is 4 miles turning around at the dam. Water is very cold and clear, you can see the fish swimming under your boat
Tully Lake, Royalston, MA
Launch off Route 32 at State Launch, paddle around perimeter of lake for total of about 4 miles. Lots of coves to explore and islands to land on for swimming. Can go further by going into the Tully River - see next description.
Tully River to Long Pond, Royalston, MA
Launch on Doane Hill Road, Royalston, go right up river to Lond Pond, possible trip up further with portages of beaver dams (easier in high water in spring). Distance from launch to far end of long pond, round trip 3.5 miles. Lots of beaver lodges along side of river and a great early evening paddle for viewing beavers swimming in river.
Whitehall State Park, Hopkinton, MA
Launch on Route 135 in Hopkinton. Large lake with islands and coves, typical paddle around big island to far end and back is about 4 miles, add on trip to dam for a total of about 5 miles
Buffumville Lake, Oxford, MA
Army Corp of Engineers launch ramp on Oxford Road
There are 2 sections to explore connected via a tunnel under Oxford Road. Enjoy a pretty tree lined shore for about 1.5 hours to paddle around the larger lake, add another hour for the smaller side.
Salt water trip. Launch at the Hingham boat launch on Route 3A within 3 hours either side of high tide. Avoid the area at low tide! This area is a good sheltered area for exploring a nice salt water venue. There are a few small islands fairly close to shore and by paddling around World's End, you can explore the calm waters in the Weir River. On a calm day, you might also want to head out to Bumpkin Island for a picnic lunch. Enjoy views of the Boston skyline and allow at least 3-4 hours for exploring this pretty area.
Nasketucket Bay and Little Bay in Fairhaven, MA
Salt Water trip. Launch at the Seaview Launch on Sconticut Neck, Fairhaven, MA. Fee to launch, or park in the lot to launch, then move your car to the street.
This is usually a sheltered area, although wind can come up in the afternoon, whipping up that famous "Buzzards Bay Chop" that the area is known for. Sticking along shore, there is plenty to see. Wildlife abounds and most of the shoreline on the Mattapoisett side is a wildlife preserve. Expect to see a variety of shore birds and beautiful scenery. When the winds are low, a trip out to one of the offshore islands is a treat. Watch out for many submerged rocks along shore!
Lake Cochituate, Natick, MA
Launch at the State Park on Route 30 in Natick, MA. This is a huge area. There are 3 sections of the lake to explore and tunnels to connect them. You really could spend the better part of a day here and paddle many, many miles. While most of the shoreline is private, you can find a few areas to stop and picnic. It's a popular spot, so arrive early if you visit on a nice day in July or August.
Fisherville Pond, Grafton
Launch at Riverview Park behind the Riverview Apartments at 174 Providence Road (Route 122). The Pond is not huge, but you can go up the Quinsigamond River (do not venture far up if you are not familiar with and comfortable in swift-moving water) or go downstream into the Blackstone river. The banks of the Blackstone are lined with pretty birches and it feels very secluded and private in parts of the river. You can expect to see a nice variety of wildlife including muskrat and turtles.
Ashland Reservoir, Ashland, MA
Park in a dirt lot located at the southern end of the pond (NOT at the entrance to the state park on 135) on Spring Street, near Aggregate Industries, a stone quarry. Do not go here during the week, as the noise from the quarry operation is loud. The reservoir is a little over a mile long with a pretty tree-lined shoreline. There is a 3.5 mile walking path around the perimeter of the shore and a public beach at the north end.