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Best Place to Paddle

Middle Branch of the Patapsco River

Posted 9/22/2004

The Middle Branch may have become Baltimoreís Inner Harbor, had the cityís early history gone a little differently. And thankfully it didnít, because today the Middle Branch boasts peace and serenity on long stretches of urban waterfront, a post-industrial haven for fish and bird lifeóand a destination for precious few paddlers in kayaks and canoes. Weíve spied a few on occasion, gunk-holing up by the Bresco trash incinerator where the Gwynns Falls enters the river, or poking around the derelict submerged piers of Masonville, or gliding in or out with the tide where the Patapscoís Main Branch heads upstream toward Howard County. But only on occasion. And itís surprising, really, since putting in is simpleóa public beach on a spit of land known as Ferry Bar, right next to the Wal-Mart at Port Covington, gives easy access. Other boat traffic is light, reducing the anxiety level often experienced when trying to negotiate the Inner Harbor, with its many weekend-warrior yachters and own-the-road water taxis. Better hurry, though, because developers have plans for this waterfront. Itís not going to stay overlooked for long, and paddlers, with their shallow-draft and highly maneuverable crafts, have the first dibs on exploring such territory from the water.

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Other Awards for Best Place to Paddle:

Ferry Bar Park, 9/16/2009

The Northwest Branch of The Patapsco River, 9/17/2008

Colgate Creek, 9/19/2007

The Patapsco River's Northwest Branch, 9/20/2006

Lake Roland, 9/21/2005

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