Paddlers fight for position at Six Mile Falls during the 54th Kenduskeag Canoe Race in Bangor on Saturday April 17, 2021. Water levels for the race were low. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

Even with water levels 10 times lower than in normal years, the 54th Kenduskeag Canoe Race was as photogenic as ever.

Six Mile Falls, where many paddlers take their soggy lumps, provided plenty of action. But instead of being at the mercy of a raging spring flood, boats got hung up on unseen rocks, usually far underwater. Much canoe and kayak paint was shed on submerged obstacles this year.

Spectators were asked to stay away for coronavirus social distancing concerns. The press — including us — was given access, though.

Here’s a collection of the best action photos from today’s race. You’re welcome.

Canoe and kayak paddlers enter the water in waves at the start of the 54th Kenduskeag Canoe Race in Kenduskeag on Saturday April 17, 2021. In all, 423 paddlers in 220 boats entered the race. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN
Nate and Mike Olson navigate the shallow water below Six Mile Falls in the 54th Kenduskeag Canoe Race in Bangor on Saturday. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN
Two boats jockey for position atop Six Mile Falls in Bangor on Saturday April 17, 2021, during the 54th Kenduskeag Canoe Race. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

Clockwise from left: Ben Foster (stern) and Oliver Degnan paddle over Six Mile Falls in Bangor on Saturday April 17, 2021, during the 54th Kenduskeag Canoe Race; Georgia Doore (left) and Colby Hope paddle through downtown Bangor near the finish. In all, 423 paddlers in 220 boats entered the race; Sigrid Noack gets hung up on some rocks below Six Mile Falls. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

Joe McCloskey and and Abi Martin portage around Six Mile Falls during the 54th Kenduskeag Canoe Race in Bangor on Saturday April 17, 2021. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN
Jennifer Adams (stern) and Hannah Marshall get ready to go over Six Mile Falls in Bangor on Saturday April 17, 2021, during the 54th Kenduskeag Canoe Race. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

Clockwise from left: Two paddlers race for the finish line in downtown Bangor on Saturday April 17, 2021, during the 54th Kenduskeag Canoe Race; Tom Moriarty (stern) and Jennifer Neptune paddle just below Six Mile Falls; Andy Michaud (left) and Shawn Owens celebrate after getting over Six Mile Falls. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

Paddlers fight for position at Six Mile Falls during the 54th Kenduskeag Canoe Race in Bangor on Saturday April 17, 2021. Water levels for the race were low. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN
Mike Mobley (stern) and Ben Smith make their way over Six Mile Falls in Bangor on Saturday April 17, 2021, during the 54th Kenduskeag Canoe Race. Credit: Troy R. Bennett / BDN

Correction: A photo caption previously misidentified the paddlers wearing bib 199. The paddlers are Georgia Doore and Colby Hope.

Troy R. Bennett

Troy R. Bennett is a Buxton native and longtime Portland resident whose photojournalism has appeared in media outlets all over the world.