On the Farmington River in Autumn - WFSB 3 Connecticut


On the Farmington River in Autumn

Posted: Updated:
Kayaking on the Farmington River Kayaking on the Farmington River
Kayaker on the Farmington River Kayaker on the Farmington River
Town Bridge in Canton Town Bridge in Canton
FARMINGTON, CT (WFSB) - Since childhood, my love of the outdoors has always been a part of me.  And as an adult, I hope to share that passion with my own children.

So, I offered this challenge to my family, to join me in exploring the hidden treasures and more popular gems Connecticut and the surrounding region have to offer.  From hiking to biking to kayaking, I hope my window into the outside world inspires you to explore as well.


Canton – Collinsville

It's hard not to be drawn in by the beautiful colors of fall.  So, hiking during this time of year is always a plus. But, it's also a great time to hit the water.  And, the Farmington River is the perfect spot. 

This time around my husband and I packed up the kids and headed to the Collinsville section of Canton to take advantage of the gorgeous scenery.  Because we don't own kayaks, we chose to rent from Collinsville Canoe & Kayak.  They have single kayaks as well as tandem boats, so our four-year-old could ride with her dad.

Once we got our gear, we headed to the on-site boat ramp to easily access the river. And, as our boats sluiced through the water, we began to drink it all in. 

This stretch of river is considered flat water. It acts more like a lake because this part of the river is dammed. It's a great introduction for those new to the experience, and not only for those in kayaks. Canoes and paddle boards often dot this part of the river because of the water's gentle demeanor, making it a great training ground for all ages.

From here, the entire trek takes you up river to Town Bridge, about a mile and half one way.  But, for many, just touring the main part of the river is just as entertaining.  So, we did a little of both.

Traveling at a lazy pace, we took notice of the scenery all around us.  We could see the changing leaves on trees along the river bank dancing on the surface of the water. These created great pockets for us to explore, along with the handful of ducks and Canadian geese that did the same.

The water here is cool to the touch, but crystal clear.  There are parts that are extremely shallow and at times stands only a few inches deep. This is something to consider if you want to avoid running aground.  But, it's also a great opportunity for the kids to catch a glimpse of fish  scuttling through the water.

It's moments like these that had the kids hanging back with their dad and me itching to explore.  I took the opportunity to make my way toward the bridge.  An island greeted me about a quarter mile before my destination.  On the left, bedrock on the driest part of the river; on the right, a curve that took me to the steel bridge, my turnaround point.  Once there, I reversed course, turning to retrieve my family and venture back to home base. 

Gliding back, the ease of the journey was both relaxing and refreshing.  The round trip took a little less than an hour, and didn't feel rushed.  But, the ultimate reward was watching as a bald eagle flew low over the tree tops; a moment shared with my oldest daughter who spotted it too.

It was a spectacular way to end our time on the river. My only regret is that we didn't do it sooner.   

Directions: At the junction of Route 4, take Route 179 North.  Travel about two miles until you come to a stop sign.  At the sign, turn right over the bridge, continuing on Route 179 North.  The lot is on the left.

Trail Difficulty: Easy

Trail Length: 3.0 miles (round trip)