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Swatara Creek - Kayak Trip / Canoe Trip

Report Type: Destination Report
Nearest City: Harrisburg, PA
Difficulty: Moderate
Submitted by: hikebikepaddle


Swatara State Park and the Swatara Creek encompass over 3,500 acres of natural beauty all within a 30 minute drive from downtown Harrisburg. The park is mostly undeveloped but improvements such as camping facilities and a visitor center are planned for the future. The Park is a nature, biker and paddlers playground offering many miles of trails and several launches for watercraft.

Paddle the almost 8 miles of stream within the Park and you'll feel like you're somewhere much further removed from the hustle and bustle of the area. Very few private residences, Class I and an occasional Class II make this an enjoyable float. Clear water & and a wonderful gravel stream bed add to the experience. It's a best kept secret!


Several campgrounds and especially the Twin Grove KOA on Route 443 south of Pine Grove offers really nice camping accommodations. Good food too. Green Way Outdoors on 72 North, 1 mile North of 81 offers canoe rentals with shuttle services. 717-861-4087


PA Launch Permit or DCNR Park Permit required.


81 North Exit 90 (Route 72 - Lebanon Exit). Travel 2-3 North on Route 72 and your in the heart of the Park. Check the DCNR's website for PA State Parks - Swatara State Park for on line maps and detailed park information.


Refer to the Swatara Creek Water Trail Map available online for full information. The Pine Grove launch and the launches within the Park offer a serene natural experience notable for this area.


Swatara State Park 717-865-6470



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