When it comes to kayaking, I'm a big fan of the half-day trip. Short trips close to home are easy to fit into our weekend schedule and use less gasoline. They also meet my "unofficial" rule: our time on the water should be longer than our drive to get there. That means we usually kayak within 50-60 miles of home since we rarely spend more than two hours on the water.
After four years of kayaking, though, I'm feeling the need to break my own rule and branch out a little. So here's my fall kayaking wish list -- most of these waterways are about 1 1/2 to two hours drive for us, but they might be right in your backyard. Please write and let us know if you've tried them!
Merrymeeting Marsh in New Durham: This marsh wasn't on my radar until I followed a link to an article fromTwitter. While there's road noise here, it also sounds like an easy access place to take in some fall color and possibly see some waterfowl.
Connecticut River from Cornish: From their 40-acre farm, North Star Canoe Rental offers a full-day (12-mile) trip and a 4-mile, family-friendly paddle -- that's the one for me! Along the way, you'll see the Cornish-Windsor covered bridge and an island where you can take-out and relax. Rent a canoe or kayak on-site or bring your own.
Pillsbury State Park in Washington: An article in the Boston Globe tipped me off to this place in the southwestern part of the state. The Park has many features, including May and Butterfield Ponds, linked by a narrow channel. Sounds like a great place to "get away from it all" without having to travel too far off the beaten path.