I had heard about this trip down river from a complete stranger. He had stopped by to let his young 5 year old son visit with my four teenage daughters swimming in a local stream.
Finally with cash on hand (NO, they don't except anything other than CASH)and sunscreen- we ventured from Oxford, CT to Farmington. We did stop and buy those cheap tennis shoes at Walmart to protect our feet and not care if they get wet (This was a SMART IDEA!) It was an easy, scenic ride and easier to find once we exited off the highway. Parking attendents are at the entry flagging you where to park. I ignored him and drove straight through to get away from the crowd. If you look to your right as you pull in, you will see what looks like quite a few porta pottys. Most of these in actuality are dressing rooms. Very convenient. We suggest you take a bathroom break NOW, as you won't have that luxury for about 2 hours or so. The travel trailer that you see parked there is where you pay. Everyone must sign a release form. An adult's signature is needed for anyone under the age of 18. They will hold your car keys if you need this service (suggested ;-) Don't wear your sunglasses or any jewelry, as plenty people lost these things in others on the trip down the river. They stamp your hand (which gets checked). If you didn't bring your own lifejacket, they supply them at no additional charge. The tubes are divided into weight capacity and you are told which one to get ;-). Afterwards with tube in hand, a young lady directs you to where the takeoff is and gives you the 3 minute rapid speech on the rules, etc.,(Too fast to understand :-( and you are on your own from there. I SUGGEST that you bring a portable paddle to push yourself off the rocks or river banks, if needed. (Or a long stick) I am a bit on the heavy side and tended to "get stuck" easily..lol. My daughter rolled her eyes as I tried to get out to the mid stream area. I was stuck like a turned over tortoise on his shell. Ah, a diet will be forthcoming. They post a lifeguard at the first "rapid". Really, he/she is un-needed at this one. It is the third set of rapids that most young teens or kids get flipped out on. Really not bad, just something to be concious of. My 13 year old daughter was turned over and she pulled a muscle while trying to grap onto her tube. Remind them to keep their mouths CLOSED! You don't need them swallowing water. This rapid is relatively short but suddenly steep. EVERYONE MUST KNOW HOW TO SWIM. Although, I found that the majority of the trip is in medium shallow water not over 7 feet deep in most places.
There are times where you can relax and just enjoy the quiet solitude of floating....knowing that another rapid is on up ahead.
When you see the blue/yellow tube hanging on the left bank in a tree..that is your stopping place. They have added plenty of sand to safely dismount from your tube. So after the 3rd rapid...steer to the left of the river so you don't miss the stopping point.
The bus driver will be waiting there and you will board the bus with your tube, placing it on the right side of the bus and yourself on the left. Two people per seat. The drive back is a short one, although you have to wait for the bus to fill up completely before he departs. When you return you hopefully have brought towels and dry clothes. There is a wonderful italian bistro across the street from the park.
My girls LOVED the trip and we plan on heading back often. It is even a trip that I would do alone. The cost can be a bit restrictive for a large family to do it often.
Started at around 10am and was on the river for about 2 1/2 hours ( I got stuck on a rock for about 15 minutes!). Just make sure you where something on your arms to prevent chafing, whether it be cut socks or a long sleve shirt, trust me.
\"Southeastern Connecticut's Premier Ballet Company,\" this performing company is comprised of professional dancers and young local talents who present classical
dance performances, as well as new, innovative works.
2 story motor lodge 14 mi from Mystic Seaport; 10 mi from Groton Naval shipyard. Hotel Details:Sprinkler in Rooms. Pets
Allowed. Smoke Alarm in Rooms. Common/Public Areas Accessible to Wheelchairs. Common Area Wireless Access. Laundry Room.