Kayak Camp the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon

Pennsylvania Big Meadows Access

  • Activities:

    Camping, Fishing, Photography, Kayaking

  • Skill Level:

    Intermediate

  • Season:

    Spring, Summer, Autumn

Easy Parking
Forest
River
Scenic
Waterfall
Wildflowers
Wildlife

Kayak or canoe the 17-mile section of Pine Creek Gorge through what is also known as the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon. Navigate Owassee and Split Rock Rapids and enjoy the scenic waterway. Keep on the lookout for bald eagles and other wildlife.

Start at the Big Meadows parking area in Ansonia. The water access is at Marsh Creek but almost immediately meets up with Pine Creek. Arrange a shuttle service with Pine Creek Outfitters to either pick you up or shuttle your vehicle to the take out at Blackwell and also pick up one of their waterproof river maps.

Depending on water level, rapids can be class II/III. Owassee Rapids is 2.7 miles into the trip and the first of many camping options will begin 5.1 miles into the trip. Set up camp and explore Several of the runs will lead to beautiful waterfalls.

The Blackwell access for take out is at the route 414 bridge on river left. This completes the 17-mile canyon section. You can also utilize the river map to extend your trip further down Pine Creek. Pine Creek is a free flowing creek, be sure to check water levels to make sure it is runnable. Summer is often too low except after rainfalls.

Pack List

  • Camping Permit
  • Kayak, paddle, PFD
  • Tent/hammock
  • Sleeping bag
  • Dry bags
  • Camera/waterproof camera
  • Water purification system
  • Food/snacks
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Reviews

Overall rating: 

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Absolutely amazing experience. I do recommend calling ahead to Pine Creek Outfitters, when I went in June the water levels were too low to kayak. This wasn't a problem, however, as they offer a biking alternative down a 10 mile trail through the canyon next to the creek. Fantastic bike ride, plenty of opportunity to get off the bikes and explore the mountain and the creek. You will come to the bottom of Turkey Path while biking, which is a 1.5 hour round trip up the east side of the canyon. This is definitely worth it because it takes you to a well maintained state park lookout post that allows you to view the entire canyon.

about 1 year ago
about 1 year ago

Shawn GrenningerExplorer

Born and raised in Central Pennsylvania exploring the beautiful outdoors by foot and kayak and spending the nights under the stars. I'm typically planning my next adventure before the current one ends and of course enjoy a good beer in the process.

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