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, Sandy River Source to Kennebec SUP Trip Report, Rivers For Change

Sandy River, Maine. Looking downstream to Phillips

By Matt Palmariello

Twenty-five years ago in Augusta Maine the Edwards Dam was removed from the Kennebec River and ever since then the waters above the old dam have revitalized and fish have returned in great numbers.  The Sandy River has the best Atlantic Salmon spawning habitat on the East Coast, but it flows into the Kennebec River upstream of four other dams, making fish access extremely difficult.  Today, two of those dams on the lower Kennebec River are up for federal re-licensing, presenting a once in a lifetime opportunity to change things for the better.  If passage to the Sandy River were opened up again, it would change the whole trajectory of the river and its surrounding area.  Without safe access to the Sandy River to spawn, Atlantic Salmon will go extinct in the U.S.

In July, Chris Morgan will lead a group of paddlers down the Kennebec River from Source to Sea with Rivers for Change, a non-profit group that knows the importance of Source to Sea education and the importance of understanding rivers as complete inter-connected systems.  This Sandy River trip was done to complement Chris’s trip, to bring awareness to the dam re-licensing and to shine a light on the Sandy River, the most significant tributary to the Kennebec River.

As a group, we met up at 8:15am on Tuesday May 14th at the takeout, some of us meeting in person for the very first time.

Continue reading here

View Joe Klementovich’s photos from the trip here

Learn more about the Kennebec source to sea here