The Canoe Brook Water Reservoir is a great tract of wild land from Chatham up through Livingston. It supplies water for many towns in the area and has lots of ‘keep out’ signs. It’s been on my list of places to roam for a while. Now I’m cruising through on a kayak. I’m riding a wave of euphoria as I’m well ahead of where I had planned to be. I’m also in a long stretch where I’ve been unable to scout very much. I had expected this stretch to be slower, meandering and crouched in by sub-divisions. Boy, was I wrong.
There are a set of open spaces along the river – the Canoe Brook Water Reservoirs (1 and 2), the Central Valley Wetlands, the Troy Meadows Wetlands, the confluence with the Rockaway River and many other large tracts of undeveloped land. There are great expansive natural meadows for miles. A bald eagle flew yards over my head and perched above the river to watch me (the first of two eagles I saw). There were trees to wind around, over, underneath. There are many birds, including one with a squared off tail and a distinctive bounce up and down while on the ground. It’s like a salsa dancer that keeps their hips moving without realizing it. The current is a bit slower but still conducting me through new lands with ease. The grace and beauty of this stretch was totally unexpected. Euphoria is flowing full on.
I had hoped to make it to the Great Piece Meadows by the second night. Now it’s feeling like it will be the first night.