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  The Entire Delaware River(Well, almost.)
  Posted by: spiritboat on Oct-16-13 10:04 AM (EST)

-- Last Updated: Jan-04-14 8:57 AM EST --

I'm planning this trip in two separate legs.
LEG ONE will be in Spring 2014(probably May, there's lots of water on the Upper Delaware then)and LEG TWO might be either mid-summer or September 2014. I already have a few interested paddling partners, but only one of them is firm on going(which is, quite natural this far in advance). Anyway, I'm posting this shout-out for anyone else who may be interested.

The plan is to launch each leg on a Monday, and finish up on Thursday/Friday -- No weekend paddling. With all the livery canoe companies on the Delaware, some sections can get like a river dork freeway in season. To avoid this, weekdays are just better. We'd push into a Saturday, only if delayed by severe inclement weather or some other unwanted/unexpected calamity...YOU may join us for Leg One, Leg Two, or both! Provided you have what it takes. Daytrippers are also welcomed to join in, but we will make no special arrangements to rendezvous with any daytripper. You'd have to find us "somewhere down the lazy river." Nor will we welcome casual overnight guests in our camps--You must be in for at least a full leg(Advance reservations, permits, shuttling, shared expenses--You understand...Or do ya? I dunno.) I first canoed this river 40 years ago. And even though I now have the body of a 29 yr old, I'm going to do it all again. (That's okay--Don't bother doing the math;-)

LEG ONE will be about 75-80 miles in length. We will Put-In at Hancock, NY on the upper river, and Take-Out at Port Jervis, NY or Matamoras, PA. It would involve 4 days fun paddling and sightseeing, with 3 nights of camping("I cook--You clean?" Just kidding.) Again, the preferred month for this leg is May, but June's not out of the question, either. LEG ONE is the more challenging and remote-feeling(wilderness scene-wise) with numerous Class I and a few Class II rapids.
(And maybe/possibly,one Class III--Under normal conditions, there are no rapids greater than Cl. III on the Delaware and they are far and few between...But after or at flood, anything goes.)

YOU must be a competent paddler, who is completely comfortable with at least Class II whitewater(especially for Leg One). The canoe is usually the vessel of choice for the Delaware. But I have also paddled the river in both hard top kayaks and expedition-grade inflatable kayaks. Whatever boat you use, it's advisable that it is at least 13 feet in length, to carry all your stuff and adequately cover the distance(unless you know how to travel super ultra-light in a small whitewater kayak--Just don't ask me to carry your damn cooler). Also, it should be a hull you don't mind potentially scratching up(think shallows, gravel, and rocks--Lots and lots of rocks.)

LEG TWO will be about 105 miles in length. We will return to Port Jervis, NY to Put-In, and expect to Take-Out 5 days later, about 12 miles upriver from the City of Trenton, NJ(where the clean canoeable water ends.) This leg would involve 5 days paddling and 4 overnights. On LEG TWO, the river becomes wider and deeper. Not as narrow and twisty as in LEG ONE and without as many rapids(but still just enough challenges to keep things interesting. Hee-hee.) The scenery passing through the Delaware Water Gap region is magnificent. There is interesting geology, forests, and rolling hills...But sections of this leg are more populated, vying from pastoral to urban(around Easton, PA). Plus, there is some powerboat traffic to contend with here and there. But there's many charming settings and quaint villages to enjoy also.

Caveats/Disclaimer: We are into a wholesome, sober good time on the river. We're seeking gracious, like minded fellow paddlers, who are responsible for themselves yet don't mind lending a hand now and then. Heap big BS artists with a good sense-of-humor are okay. And if you like to responsibly throwback a few beers around the campfire, but are not some raging drunk who makes him/herself a problem for others, that's okay too. --But here's the short list of what we can't abide: No sourpuss snivelers or terminal complainers...No ultra-speed paddling fiends who feel they have something to prove...No political or religious proselytizers...No salespeople not on vacation from their job...No druggies/junkies. If all of that is too PC(or even not PC enough)for you, too bad --We're seeking gracious like-minded paddlers who are mature and self-responsible. Yet who are okay with covering a partners back, should the need arise. 'Nuff said.

I'll be limiting the number of boats along for this(prolly 6 boats or under). Once arrangements and our "Dream Team" are set, this post will be deleted the closer the dates approach. Express your interest, questions or comments by sending me an email, or simply make replies here.
The ridiculous will go unanswered.

LEG THREE ADDED! --See text in replies below for further info.

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Messages in this Topic


  I'm interested
  Posted by: TommyC1 on Oct-22-13 1:01 PM (EST)
Sent ya an email.

  Clearly you are not among the ridiculous
  Posted by: spiritboat on Oct-23-13 11:46 AM (EST)
so I sent you an answer!
  too late for me ...
  Posted by: seadart on Oct-23-13 5:49 PM (EST)
I always wanted to do this trip when I lived near Yardley PA.

A couple of points about your trip.
Camping on the lower Delaware would seem to be tough. There is a really nice set of cabins you can rent through Bucks County at Towhickon Creek.

Take out spot. If you are going to go all that way you do need to run the wing dam slot at Lambertville and then Scudder Falls. There used to be a nice parking spot across from the Yardley Inn, about a mile south of Scudder falls, near River Road and Afton road in Yardley. The water used to be fine down to there.
  Thanks for your post, seadart.
  Posted by: spiritboat on Oct-23-13 7:58 PM (EST)
-- Last Updated: Oct-24-13 1:23 AM EST --

I use to live in Lambertville. Back in the early 80's, I use to surf Wells Falls-Wing Dam wearing a wet suit and riding a boogie board...One day, after I took out, a NJ State Trooper approached me: "You know somebody drowned in those rapids last week?" (AND) "Did you scoop those Shad up with your bare hands?"

So I know that region fairly well.

In all likely hood, we will be taking out in the public access just after the New Hope bridge(I even have a friend who's house backs up on the D&R feeder canal there, waiting to help.) Unless, of course, there is a group consensus to push on down to Washington's Crossing.

  Posted by: gmuller on Nov-20-13 4:23 AM (EST)
I also did this trip about 40 years ado, from Hancock to Tucker Falls just north of Yardley. I did it in a 14 foot kayak. It was great fun. Wish I could do it again but I now live in FL.
  No problem...
  Posted by: spiritboat on Nov-20-13 8:47 AM (EST)
We're all coming down to Florida for a week after-the-holiday paddle and warm water tune-up! (You wouldn't mind if we came over to compare notes on the Delaware, would ya?) Oh, btw--If you could put me up for all of January and February as well, that'd also be really great!!! (I get a little tired of using a drysuit for winter paddling by that point.);-

Thanks for sharing your experience.
  I'd be interested
  Posted by: eckilson on Dec-03-13 4:17 AM (EST)
At least in the first leg. Not so sure about the second. Assume you will do the two legs at different times?
  Posted by: spiritboat on Dec-03-13 1:31 PM (EST)
-- Last Updated: Dec-03-13 1:36 PM EST --

First Leg is in May(exact dates, still to be determined).

The war party now includes six very interested paddle-warriors. At least a couple of whom, are northeast Pnutters you've most likely already met.

You have an open invitation anytime, Eck. (I think your "bona fides" are well enough known;-.)

  if I can save my
  Posted by: daggermat on Dec-05-13 4:57 AM (EST)
remaining vacation days, I could be in as well, probably first leg as well. I like heading that way. Hartford is not on the route...
  Holy Smokes!
  Posted by: spiritboat on Dec-06-13 12:03 PM (EST)
This could end-up being like a "Northeast Paddlers Old Home Week."

Be good to have ya, Matt--Sorry I haven't gotten round to picking up that Whitesell off you yet.(No truckie for some time.)
  if i make it
  Posted by: daggermat on Dec-06-13 12:14 PM (EST)
I could bring the whitesell along . I could also bring Eck and or Tommy as well, seeing as i am on the way, as long as my truck lasts through its 13Th winter
  Dates for Leg One.
  Posted by: spiritboat on Dec-22-13 10:18 AM (EST)
May 12, 13, 14 and 15. Monday through Thursday.

--Still a couple slots open for interested paddlers.
  A Leg Three added, Leg Two shortened.
  Posted by: spiritboat on Jan-04-14 8:55 AM (EST)
To all interested parties:

LEG TWO has been scaled back to 60 river miles, going from Port Jervis, NY to Martin's Creek, PA, still includes Del Water Gap region and Foul Rift rapids.
3 Days paddling, 2 nights camping. Probably July/August 2014.

LEG THREE will encompass returning to Martin's Creek PA(to Put-In)sometime later, paddling approximately 61 river miles, to Take-Out at Trenton, NJ. Now includes Wells Falls rapid(Cl. II+/at times III)and landing near Washington's Crossing State Park, NJ.
Date TBD, Fall 2014.

As listed in the original post, these paddles include primitive camping and will take place over weekdays. Both canoes and kayaks welcomed.


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