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A peaceful rest stop in the shadow of the nation's largest city.
Contact Information: Delaware Water Gap National Recreational Area National Park Service Bushkill, PA 18324 717/588-2435
Tune your radio to AM 1610 when traveling along Route 209 near Bushkill and at Dingmans Falls Visitor Center to learn more about park programs and recreational opportunities.
River Condition Information Line: 914/252-7100
Location: Located in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, the NRA is along the Delaware River, 100 miles west of New York City and 100 miles north of Philadelphia.
Getting There: From Pennsylvania, take I-84 east to Rt. 209 S (Exit 10) through Milford to the northern boundary. Take I-80 east past Stroudsburg to 209 N (Exit 52) to the southern boundary. From New York City and New Jersey, take I-80 west to the Delaware Water Gap.
Wildlife: Nearly 250 bird species (waterfowl, raptors, songbirds, shore birds, game birds) inhabit or migrate through the park.
The park is one of the best places in the East to watch for hawks and other raptors during their semi-annual migrations. This is also one of the few locations where bald eagles spend the winter. Mid-morning or late-afternoon during January or February is the best time to spot them.
Also common are whitetail deer, beavers, black bears and river otters.
Insects: Ticks are common.
Plant Life: Hemlock, mountain laurel, black locust, rhododendron, and wild orchids are just a few samples of flora found in the area.
Facilities: Although the area is intended for day-use, primitive camping is allowed in designated areas ~ such as Quicks Island, Buck Bar, Toms Creek, Quinn, Valley View, and Peters. There are also a few single sites located along the length of the Delaware.
There are many private campgrounds located within 40 minutes of the river. There is just one privately owned seasonal campground, Dingmans Campground (RD#2, Box 20, Dingmans Ferry, PA 18328; 717/828-2266), within the recreational area. It offers tent and RV sites April through October 15. Public telephones, hookups, water, showers, flush toilets, and picnic tables are available. Sites run about $15 per night.
Primitive camping is permitted for Appalachian trail hikers and for boaters traveling between river access points. These sites are limited to a one-night stay and operate on a first-come, first-served basis. For special AT camping regulations, call 717/588-2451.
Canoe camping at designated locations is also available.
The National Park Service operates visitor centers at Kittatinny Point (908/496-4458) in New Jersey just off I-80 and at Dingmans Falls (717/828-7802) off U.S. 209 in Pennsylvania. Both centers are open from April through October, and Kittatinny remains open on weekends in the winter.
There are over 15 canoe liveries in the area.
Parking: Parking areas are located at Lake Lenape, Resort Point Overlook, and Sunrise trailhead in Pennsylvania. In New Jersey, parking areas are located at Farview, Dunnfield, Coppermine, Milford Beach, and along Route 602.
Permits: Camping permits are not required for the Appalachian Trail or primitive (canoe) areas along the Delaware River. Fishing licenses are required in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
Leave No Trace:
Maps: Hiking maps and general maps of the area are available from the park superintendent, and "Hiking Guide to Delaware Water Gap Recreation Area" is available at both visitor centers. A number of books, guides, and maps are available from: Eastern National Park & Monument Association 3 Main St. Layton, NJ 07851.
One helpful source is Delaware Water Gap Hiking Guide by Nick Miskowski.
Other Trip Options: