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The Quinnipiac River is 38 miles long, originating in New Britain and ending in New Haven.  The river is home to many fish and wildlife and the best way to view them is from a canoe or kayak! 

"Rivers are valuable natural resources. Many of Connecticut’s earliest settlements occurred next to rivers for the transportation and utilization of its natural resources. With the advent of the gas powered engine, rivers lost their importance for transportation. The era of the industrial revolution brought many changes to the river and its associated habitats because of filling, altering of channels, and discharges of untreated wastes."


"Today, with the enactment of various federal and state environmental protection laws and citizen concern, rivers are making a comeback. The return of various fish and wildlife resources to rivers provides testimony that things are getting better; however there are still many negative influences that are impacting the river’s systems. Non-point source pollution (e.g. Run off of excess lawn fertilizer or illegally dumped motor oil) and illegal wetland filling are modern problems that need to be addressed. Although some rivers are getting cleaner improvements are still needed."

"The Quinnipiac River is one of the more urbanized rivers of the State and there is a need to educate those individuals who knowingly or unknowingly pollute the river. The Quinnipiac River and its associated habitats are home to a wide variety of wildlife. This inland portion of the river provides an excellent opportunity to see wildlife while canoeing. Viewing some of the more secretive wildlife requires being as quiet as possible and early morning hours may be better for viewing. Collectively, through education, each and every citizen can have a positive influence on our rivers and heal the wounds that ignorance caused in the past. It is hoped that this canoeable trail and guide will help educate citizens and help make a positive contribution to the conservation of our natural resources for the benefit of present and future generations. "

(Picone, "Upper Quinnipiac River Canoeable Trail Guide", 1995)

Meet Quinn!
He’s the Q-River Trail Otter.

Not only is he the official Q-River Trail mascot, he is also a resident. Look for him as you meander down the Q-River Trail. Who knows, you just might see one of his relatives as you paddle on by.

The Quinnipiac River Trail nature guide will be available on-line to download soon.  The numbered stops in the guide correspond with yellow markers along the trail.


For info on getting a fishing license, visit

USGS National Water Information System Current Conditions: Connecticut

The Quinnipiac River Trail and boat launches are maintained by a dedicated group of volunteers, local governments and non-profit organizations.


Funding to improve the trail was provided by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service  Natural Resource Damage Assessment & Restoration Program.  The funds were derived from settlements related to two Superfund sites in Southington  that released hazardous substances into to the river and its wetlands in the early and mid-1900s.  Improvements to the trail are intended to increase the public’s use and enjoyment of the river and to partly compensate for the impacts to the river ecosystem.  

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