RRCT’s Intervale Preserve provides good parking and safe access down steep muddy banks for fishing, hunting, birding, and paddling. The narrow winding river can be challenging in this section.
Intervale Preserve, Rte 231
Boat access with good parking is available at the Intervale Preserve (owned by Royal River Conservation Trust) on Route 231 in New Gloucester. Steep muddy banks and a narrow river with obstacles make this access point suitable for informed adventurers, bird hunters, and others. From the Preserve, depending on water levels, paddlers can go upriver from some distance until hitting beaver dams, or downriver.
Intervale Preserve, Rte 231, to Penny Road
Slow current. The four mile stretch from Route 231 at the Intervale Preserve to Penney Rd in New Gloucester deserves a sense of adventure. There are many obstacles in the first few miles including shallow logs that can be floated over in all but the lowest water, and piles of jackstraw that require more careful navigation. Immediately after the takeout at the Penney Road bridge, there is a steep 30′ rapid ending in a pool. Access at both ends involves steep banks, much easier at the Intervale than at Penny Rd.
Reviewer’s Notes (2014)
This stretch of river is a 20- to 50-ft wide canyon with 4- to 8-ft banks running between fields and woodland, but 15 minutes after you launch, all signs of civilization are gone. No traffic noise, no houses; only you and nature. The river has a firm, sandy bottom where you can splash through the shallows, and deep pools as well. Huge hardwoods overhang the stream and create a shady tunnel. Transmission lines and the sound of fast-moving water signal your arrival at Penney Rd. This stretch of the Royal is for those who aren’t in a rush and who enjoy solitude.
- It is never safe nor legal to travel along railroad tracks.
- Please always respect private landowners, especially respecting “posted” signs. Please respect fire department and water district “no parking” or “access by permission signs.”
- All rivers require attention to safety. Paddling conditions vary according to weather and season, so always exercise caution and always wear a life jacket. With good judgment and proper equipment, risks can be reduced. Paddlers should seek to avoid causing erosion, trampling vegetation, disturbing wildlife, and harming water quality.
Carry In/Carry Out (Leave no trace!)
Please plan to remove trash left by others, to improve the experience for everyone.