delaware water gap

i’m thinking of taking the wife and 2 kids, 5 and 8, on a 3-4 day trip in late june from milford to the kittatinny pt. access. never been there before so i was wondering if i can get some info on 1) boat traffic around that time? 2) how bad are the bugs? (we usually go to the adirondacks, but late june is still in blackfly season so we’re looking to the DWG.) 3) what’s the weather like in late june? 4) how developed are the banks of the river (in other words, is it pretty scenic and wild or is it filled with private homes along the banks?) 5)and any general info about the river, the geography and trip? thanks.

Delaware water gap
I see that no one has replied yet, so I’ll answer with what I know. I’ve never done any overnights along the Delaware, just many day trips, although it’s been a couple years since we’ve even done that. Our paddling has been done from Matamoras to Smithfield Beach, never as far as the gap itself, so I can’t comment on that part of the trip.

I wouldn’t be too concerned about motor boat traffic; we’ve only ever seen a handful. I do believe that most of the motor traffic is Smithfield Beach and below. Most of the boat traffic consists of canoes and kayaks, many of which are rented from local liveries. Sometimes a group of yahoos in canoes can be almost an annoying. The Smithfield Beach area can be busy with people and boats.

Campsites are first-come-first-serve. Many sites were damaged during the recent flooding, so I can’t vouch for their condition or even how many are available. I believe all are rustic.

The river itself is beautiful, and the water is usually extremely clear. We have always seen bald eagles, usually around Dingman’s, and also below Bushkill. The stretch from Milford to Smithfield Beach is all within the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, so you won’t find the banks lined with homes, just a few cabins here and there.

The heat of the summer usually hasn’t hit by the time you plan to go. I can’t tell you about bugs, because we have usually gone in the fall.

I believe the largest rapids in the stretch you’re considering occur between Bushkill and Smithfield Beach, and they are cosidered class 1, depending on the water flow.

Perhaps this link can be of help.

Hope this helps and you have a great trip. It’s not the Adirondacks, but then, nothing is!


Deleware is great.
I’ve taken both canoe and kayak down the Deleware on over night trips and it is always a great time. It is very scenic. no, you won’t find homes along the banks. The campsites are free of charge based on a first come, first served basis. Keep your food in a bearproof container or hang it between two trees.I’ve never had a problem but there are black bear throughout the area. A buddy of mine woke up one morning to a black bear licking the ants off the side of his tent. Of course he didn’t realize he’d pitched it on top of an ant mound. The black flies aren’t a problem but the ticks always seem to find me, even during hunting season along the river. You will see Bald Eagle, Turkey, chance of coyote, Black Bear, Whitetail Deer along your journey. June is a good time as the water levels are still good. I’ve gone in August during a drought and did alot of paddling. You will feel pretty much by yourself for most of the trip until you round the Walpack bend, pass through the rapids below Sambo island and approach Smithfield Beach access. It is here that you will encounter the noise of the motorboats. There is a separate channel for motorized boats and one for paddlers. This will be the tail end of your trip anyway. I believe the few campsites below Smithfield were washed away during the flooding two years ago. I did have a trip review posted from about six years ago, don’t know if it is sttill on here. going to have to look now. If I can be of any further help don’t be afraid to ask. If you need any boat rentals I have a friend that has an outfitting business.

sorry about the delay post, been out of town. thanks for both of your replies. read the trip reports, visited the site and other outfitter sites, came here for first hand info. i’ve read about the tick/lyme disease problem and that’s my main concern at this point with 2 little kids.

Thanks for this thread!

This is the trip my family is going to attempt for our first river expedition. We normally do base camp tripping in the Adirondacks. But the girls are old enough (7 and 10) to help set-up and strike camp, now, so we’re going to try this out.

For future readers of this thread… You have to do 26 miles to camp for two nights. The Delaware flows at 2 miles an hour, so this isn’t that much padding. So we’re planning:

Day 1: Milford to Dingmans Ferry or Shallows. Just under 10 miles.

Day 2: …to Peters or Quinns. Just under 13 miles.

Day 3: …to Poxono Access. Just under 6 miles.

I’ve attached screenshots of the map for each day, as well as the boating and camping maps of the Delaware Water Gap.