Shuttled River Trips
from Nahanton Park in Newton
Charles River Canoe & Kayak in Nahanton Park offers Shuttled River Trips so you can easily explore this wonderful stretch of river.
Depending on your paddling pace and stops, you can spend a morning or the better part of a day paddling the Charles.
How It Works
All shuttled trips begin at our Nahanton Park
location on the Newton/Needham town line. Your party and your boat are transported to your chosen drop-off point, where you get on the river and paddle downstream to our Nahanton Park location.
You pay a flat fee based on your boat type and drop-off point, and can take as long as you like to return to the dock (make sure you're back before we close). The price includes boat rental, life jackets and paddles for each party member, and passenger shuttle. Or, bring your own boat and pay per passenger.
Want to create your own group outing
? We are happy to schedule a custom shuttled river trip according to your schedule. The following minimum charges apply (these count toward your total boat rental cost): $200 during our normal hours or $300 to open at a special time.
|Standard Canoe (2-3 adults, or 2 adults/2 kids)
|Tripper XL Canoe (4-5 adults)
|Plastic Single Kayak (1 adult)
|Plastic Kids Kayak (1 adult)
|Plastic Double Kayak (2 adults)
|Stand-Up Paddleboard (1 adult)
|Your Own Boat (Shuttle Fee Per Person)
|Season Passholder (Shuttle Fee Per Person)
Reservations Are Required
for Shuttled River Trips
Registration/Cancellation Policy for Shuttled Trips
- Full payment is due upon registration for a shuttled river trip.
- For cancellations received 7 days or more before your scheduled shuttle trip, we will issue a refund less a 10% registration fee.
- For cancellations received less than 7 days before your scheduled shuttle trip, we are unable to offer any refunds, except when due to inclement weather (see below).
- Cancellations due to inclement weather must be made by contacting our Newton Office at (617) 965-5110 before 5pm the night before your scheduled shuttle trip. For such cancellations we will issue a refund less a 10% registration fee, or a full credit to be used for any activity, rental, or merchandise.
- A minimum number of registrants is required for any event to run. If we cancel a shuttle due to low enrollment, we will provide a full refund.
- A minimum water flow is needed to run the shuttle trip from Cochrane Dam, and the trip may be shortened to a Charles River Park trip on the morning of the trip. If you have signed up for the Cochrane Dam trip and it is shortened due to low water, you have the option of doing the Charles River Park trip and receiving a full refund of the price difference, or of cancelling the trip entirely and receiving a full refund.
Three Available Drop-Off Points (view map
Dolan Center, Dedham — 6-Mile Trip: Our shortest shuttle trip is great for families and can be completed in two to three hours. Beginning at the Dolan Center in Dedham and meandering back to Nahanton Park with the current you'll paddle some of the most scenic sections of the Charles, past Millenium and Cutler Park and acres of undeveloped parkland on both sides of the river.
Charles River Park — 10-Mile Trip: Our shorter shuttle trip begins at Charles River Park on South Street in Needham. This trip is entirely flatwater, with noticeable current in some sections. The first two miles of this trip have a stronger current and pass under the beautiful arch bridge of Greendale Ave. Soon thereafter, the Charles begins its scenic meanders through Dedham.
At mile 7 of the trip, you pass under Spring Street and can take out at Riverdale Park on the left for lunch on the grass or at a local restaurant (Riverside Pizza and the Waterfords are across the street; remember that drinking and paddling don't mix!). The last three miles of the trip pass mostly through undeveloped parkland on both sides of the river — a scenic and relaxing end to a great day!
This ten-mile trip usually takes three to four hours on the water.
Cochrane Dam — 13-Mile Trip: Our longer shuttle trip begins at Cochrane Dam in Dover and requires higher water levels so the rapids aren't scratchy. This trip has a 400-yard stretch of Class I-II whitewater at the beginning of the run and a short rapid after the Chestnut Street Bridge at mile 1.4. Overall, the current is stronger throughout this section than below Charles River Park.
After the Chestnut Street rapid the river passes Dedham Country Club on the right and a residential area on the left. At mile 3, you pass another short rapid after the Dedham Ave Bridge and reach Charles River Park on the left. This spot marks the beginning of the section described above.
This 13-mile trip usually takes four to five hours
on the water. This trip is available only when the USGS Streamgauge at Dover
reads 150 cubic feet per second or higher
on the morning of the trip — if you don't see the option during the reservation process, then water levels are not suitable for this trip.