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Youghiogheny River - Kayak Trip / Canoe Trip

Report Type: Weekend Trip Report
Trip Dates: June 2006
Nearest City: Connelsville, PA
Submitted by: imahick

Description:

This is the same trip that is listed as a day trip but with a totally different objective.

My 16 year old nephew and I set out after work on a Friday for a weekend of floating, fishing, fire watching, and general relaxation. We reached Hazelbakers around 4:00 pm and the young lady there ferried us up to Connellsville in my Saturn Wagon (They no longer will do this in your vehicle because of insurance reasons so you'll have to figure out a vehicle stationing or have enough people to make it worth while for them to ferry you that late in the day.)We launched with all of our camping gear, a cooler, and fishing rods. The poor old Sportspal had only about 4" of freeboard. A couple of two hundred pound guys will do that to a boat.

The river was running pretty low and we had to pick our way for the first mile or so between the rocks and riffles with one leisurely stroll for me to get us up off the bottom. After that it was more float than paddle. We fished and talked our way downstream spotting a King Fisher and a Great Blue Heron repeatedly. We caught 2 small mouths and a carp.

By 7:30 we reached River's Edge Campground (about 4 miles), checked in and were assigned an on the water sight across from the 1/2 basketball court. Before 9:00 we had setup camp, ate dinner, and had a nice little fire going. We drank cokes and played cards until about 11:00 then turned in. A word of warning, if you are a light sleeper this will not be the place for you. Just on the other side of the river are the railroad tracks and they are very active during the night. At least one train every hour or two.

We had breakfast and were on the water by 9:00, more fishing and floating. The wind started blowing stiffly up stream an hour or so into the float but between our weight and keeping the nose pointed into it we still weren't paddling too much. This was not the case for my friend Billy who we were meeting down stream.

As we neared our rendezvous point I noticed Billy’s green canoe at a ferry angle floating up river toward us at a good clip. His paddle was across his lap. He said he’d been there for an hour or so and had covered the same section of river four times. Every time he put down his paddle and picked up the fishing rod he came back up stream. So in order to make Hazelbakers at a reasonable time Billy tied his boat off to our barge and our draft pulled him down stream.

We had a sandwich lunch on the water, caught a couple of more bass and about 3:30 found a camp sight on river left that the local boy scouts had constructed for the YRT (Yough River Trail) someone had told me about. It consists of two Appalachian Trail type shelters, a nice flat area for tents, and port-a-john. We might use it on our next excursion.

Soon after the camp sight we saw canoes pulled over at a rope swing on river right and just had to join in. (I would suggest you always were your PFD when swinging as you never know what could happen.) The rope swung out ten or fifteen feet high over a twelve foot deep pool. If you timed it right you could get a little more hang time post release of the rope. A few swings and we were off to cover the last mile or so to Hazelbakers.

Our original plan was to stay overnight there and leave in the morning but I couldn’t take another night of trains so we packed up the Saturn and were home by 8:30.

Hazelbaker’s advertises this trip as 13 Miles and six hours at a leisurely pace. If you are fishing it’ll take you longer. Breaking it into an overnighter makes it really enjoyable.

Accommodations:

River's Edge Campground
Nice family run facility with cheap rates for both Trail and River thru campers. Clean Restrooms,showers, pool, & store. Fire rings and wood available.

Hazelbakers Bottom Yough Outfitters, Inc.
Campground, bait shop, and ferry service. Restrooms and change rooms.

Outfitting:

15' Aluminum Sportspal Canoe

Fees:

PA Fish Commission Launch Permit

Directions:

Route 51 to Perryopolis at first light make a left onto layton road until you see Hazelbaker's

Contact:

River's Edge Campground
1101 Riveredge Road
Connellsville, PA 15425-6118
(724) 628-4880

Hazelbakers Bottom Yough Outfitters, Inc.
654 Layton Rd.
Perryopolis, PA 15473-1354
1-800-42-RIVER


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