Paddles up when the Kennebec Rises!

Photo credit:  Three Rivers Whitewater.  Mark your calendars, here are Maine’s Kennebec River Whitewater Release Dates for the 2021 paddling season!  The Kennebec River has only 4 special high-water releases each year, with flows of 8,000+cfs, that’s almost DOUBLE the normal release flows!

The Kennebec River features 12 miles of incredible scenic beauty, fast water, and big, fun wave trains.  High water release turbine tests create BIG, aggressive whitewater for a high-adventure trip you’ll never forget!  Experience some big water and big waves in class II-V whitewater in the action-packed, scenic Kennebec!

Take on rapids like Taster, Rock Garden, and the class IV Big Mama (aka Three Sisters) with 6-8 foot waves within your first mile.  Next, you’ll hit class IV Alleyway and Z-Turn, followed by Maytag then the infamous Magic Falls!  After Magic, you tackle the last two sets of class III-IV rapids, Carry Brook and Black Brook. Then, the intensity of the Kennebec drops out and the river becomes perfect for floating or swimming.

2021 Turbine Test Release Dates & Water Levels on the Kennebec River

Most releases from Harris Station stop at 1 pm (see exception below).  From May 1st through Columbus day the daily release will be a minimum of 4,800 cfs from 10 am to 1 pm.

From June 15th through September 15th, from 1 pm to 3 pm the minimum release will be 2,400 cfs every Saturday (highlighted in green below) plus four special Sunday releases at 2,400 cfs (highlighted in blue below).

There are four special releases of 8,000 cfs from 10 am to 1 pm, highlighted in red below.

June 12th (Saturday)
Turbine Test Release
8,000 cfs
Class III-V Rapids

June 19th (Saturday)
Afternoon Release 1-3 pm
2,400 cfs
Class III-IV Rapids

June 26th (Saturday)
Afternoon Release 1-3 pm
2,400 cfs
Class III-IV Rapids

July 3rd (Saturday)
Afternoon Release 1-3 pm
2,400 cfs
Class III-IV Rapids

July 5th (Monday)
Turbine Test Release
8,000 cfs
Class III-V Rapids

July 10th (Saturday)
Afternoon Release 1-3 pm
2,400 cfs
Class III-IV Rapids

July 17th (Saturday)
Afternoon Release 1-3 pm
2,400 cfs
Class III-IV Rapids

July 18th (Sunday)
Afternoon Release 1-3 pm
2,400 cfs
Class III-IV Rapids

July 31st (Saturday)
Afternoon Release 1-3 pm
2,400 cfs
Class III-IV Rapids

August 7th (Saturday)
Afternoon Release 1-3 pm
2,400 cfs
Class III-IV Rapids

August 8th (Sunday)
Afternoon Release 1-3 pm
2,400 cfs
Class III-IV Rapids

August 14th (Saturday)
Afternoon Release 1-3 pm
2,400 cfs
Class III-IV Rapids

August 21st (Saturday)
Afternoon Release 1-3 pm
2,400 cfs
Class III-IV Rapids

August 22nd (Sunday)
Afternoon Release 1-3 pm
2,400 cfs
Class III-IV Rapids

August 28th (Saturday)
Afternoon Release 1-3 pm
2,400 cfs
Class III-IV Rapids

September 4th (Saturday)
Afternoon Release 1-3 pm
2,400 cfs
Class III-IV Rapids

September 11th (Saturday)
Turbine Test Release
8,000 cfs
Class III-V Rapids

September 12th (Sunday)
Afternoon Release 1-3 pm
2,400 cfs
Class III-IV Rapids

September 25th (Saturday)
Turbine Test Release
8,000 cfs
Class III-V Rapids

Click here to learn more about the Kennebec River!