The Susquehanna River just north of Harrisburg, Pa offers a wonderful opportunity for those looking for a great day trip. Our day started in Duncanon, (which you can access off of 11/15 N)I took my sister, who was new to the river and my children; Chelsea 12 and Tyson 8.
The put-in in Duncanon is easy and there is a couple places that suit. We had an easy time loading our necessary equipment (fishing gear and lunch). The trip is easy with a few little rapids here and there. The smallmouth bass fishing in this area is superb. Those little guys will hit on almost anything. The weather started to turn and we started to get a few light showers. We decided to have lunch at a railroad bridge and wait out the showers.
The weather cleared and we continued our trip. The fish were hitting and the sun was shining - I can't think of many better places to be.
This is an easy run for even the most inexperienced. The take-out we used was right by Blue Mountain Outfitters off of 11/15. The entire float will take about 3 - 5 hours depending on how long you like to fish or eat. There are some nice islands to stop on and take a break. If you are looking for some nice sized smallmouth bass, I would recommend the left side of the river. They like spinners or topwater if conditions are right. I have found that a trigger release reel works best so that you can fish and paddle at the same time.
Our day was a good one. My sister who lives in the Harrisburg area can't wait to go again, and my kids wanted to go the next day.
From south of Harrisburg - 81N to 11/15 Marysville exit N. You can leave one vehicle at the Marysville public boat launch and travel N. to Duncanon and use a boat access along the river.
Easy access with concrete slab at Marysville.
If you need information, Blue Mountain Outfitters has all you need. They will even rent boats and equipment for those just getting into the sport.
River map - watch the Dauphin Highlands and statue of liberty (some rapids that inexperienced paddlers should go to the left of the river).