The race courses are on a stretch of the Penobscot River that has been recently
restored to preindustrial free-flowing condition through the removal of two
dams (the Great Works and Veazie dams). The river has been essential to people
here for thousands of years, for sustenance, traveling, and industry. Now, with
this stretch returned to a more natural state, this large river can again
support a vibrant ecosystem and exciting recreational opportunities. The
Penobscot River is an industrial river and remnant industrial debris exists in
and along the river in the Great Works,
Basin Mills, and Veazie rapids.
Penobscot Nation and ACA New England hosted the 1st Annual Bashabez Run on
this stretch of river, re-tracing the route of Chief Bashabez from Indian
Island to Brewer. Photos from this year’s race are online.
from a pre-race scouting run, with great shots from the river, are also
Course Maps: http://penobscotriverwhitewaternationalsregatta.com/course/
Courses: Downriver races (for Open Canoe, SUP and Kayak downriver) will start
at Old Town’s Binette Park (map location B) and finish at the Eddington Salmon
Club (Map location I) covering about 9.4 miles. There are five significant
rapids on the racecourse and are separated by varying lengths of quick water.
All five of the rapids are of class II-III+ whitewater, depending on flow
rates, and each extends over a significant distance. The rapids are: French
Island Rips (map location B) (class 2, ~100yds), Great Works (map location C) (class
2 to 3, ~700yds), Basin Mills (map location F) (Class 2-3, ~250yds), an
un-named class 1-2 rapid of about 200yds, and Veazie Rapids (map location H-J) (Class
At normal flows, there are no mandatory portages, but the
rapids can be portaged if a racer so chooses. Any portage chosen should be
scouted since the terrain of the banks varies and industrial debris
exists in places. Racers are unlikely to encounter non-racing recreational nor
commercial rafting/boat traffic. Starts for the downriver race will be mass
starts by class. With good current the whole way, times for the downriver races
should be 60-80 minutes depending on the craft and paddler
Youth Downriver Course: Competitors 10-12 and 13-15 yrs. will start at the Orono Town Boat Launch (map
location G) downstream of the Basin Mills rapid to the finish line in Veazie (map
location H) upstream of the Veazie Eddington rapid. This course will be quick water nearly all
the way and would include one un-named class 1 or 2 rapid. Approximately 3 miles.
Sprint Course: The sprint races will start upstream of Great Works rapid (map location C) and will finish at the end
of Great Works rapid (map location D).
Length: approximately 1.3 miles. Starts
for the sprints will be on one-minute intervals.
USA Wildwater Sprint Course: The USA Wildwater Sprint will start upstream
of Great Works rapid (map location C) and will finish at the end of the Great
Works rapid (map location D).
Approximately 500 yds.
USA Wildwater Classic Course: The USA Wildwater Classic
(downriver) will start upstream of the Basin Mills rapid (map location F) and will
finish at the Eddington Salmon Club (Map location I).