Tidal Schuylkill River

A self-supported trip created by Longtrailahead

Trip Overview

Riverwinds Park is one of my favorite spots locally to launch from on the tidal Delaware River (New Jersey side). This is an ideal location, as it offers many different paddling options along the tidal Delaware River, once underway.

There is plenty of parking--with several spots allocated near the shoreline for kayakers. There is detailed signage which marks the aforementioned parking spots, as well as directions toward the nearby lagoon launching spot. I have always arrived early in the morning, and have NEVER found parking to be an issue-as the day progresses onward, I could certainly see parking becoming more of an issue perhaps.

For this specific journey, I launched in the early A.M. morning hours--fully taking advantage of the tidal flow, and set a course for the Schuylkill River. Using nautical charts, I utilized a path that would keep me in favorable waters throughout my travels. For me personally, there was much to see and experience, as I paddled upriver toward the Philadelphia Art Museum.

Overall, this entire trip was pretty fun, and I emerged from it with a much greater sense of knowledge, having viewed the area throughout.

Safety Notes

The tidal Delaware River, and this specific portion of the Schuylkill, is a working river. This means large powerful tugboats, barges, and massive ships are constantly moving about. When operating a kayak around such vessels, the most extreme caution must be used, to assure complete safety when utilizing such waters. Complete & full knowledge of the rules, understanding of the various markers, buoys, and such, goes a long way to keeping such paddling sessions incident free. Did I forget to mention commonsense?

Gear Notes

A solid kayak is in order, since the crossing of a wide tidal flowing river is involved-preferably one of longer length & including some sort of spray skirt. Proper safety gear i.e. a PFD, handheld marine VHF radio, and extra set of paddles is recommended.


Tidal water flow is always challenging, now throw in some massive bulk container ships, and a bunch of tugboats that resemble ants moving all about, and now you have some real fun. Wide water crossings can be a lot of fun. They don't always have to be frightening, but with the utmost proper planning, and paying attention to detail, such undertakings can be completed safely.

Trip Details

  • Trip Dates: 10/12/2016
  • Trip Duration: Day Trip
  • Sport/Activity: Kayaking
  • Skill Level: Intermediate, Advanced
  • Water Type: Flat/Sheltered Water, Open Water/Ocean

Trip Location