Scranton, PA

Going to be in Scranton, PA on 12/20 and wondering if anyone has knowledge of publicly accessible lake(s) that would be open at this time of year. I see several on google maps but would rather go on local knowledge.

I know, unfrozen at this time of year is a whole different issue.

See you on the water,


The River Connection, Inc.

Hyde Park, NY.

There’s a few that come to mind
Lake Wallenpaupack isn’t far, also Brady’s Lake in Game lands #127 off of Route 940. Francis Walter Dam is nice if the impoundment is high.

Not sure
Hi Marshall,

I’m not sure about PA waters but if you find something and want some company let me know. I wonder if you will need a non resident permit of some kind since kayaks need to be registered.

Gary G.

Andy ahs it right. Wallenpaupack is your best bet. Western side of lake is closest to Scranton. I think the areas name is Ledgedale ???. Boat launch is right there–no charge.

Dress for conditions. It gets REAL COLD up there.

Lake Scranton?
Never been there, but see it on the map. There are a number of reservoirs in the area, but I don’t know about public access. Francis Walter reservoir is open to the public. It is close and more sheltered than Wallenpaupack.

Brady’s Lake
Not huge, but a pleasant place to paddle.

The retention basin behind Francis Walter dam most often looks like a big bathtub that someone has let the water out of, with dead trees extending rather high up the banks, unless the water is really high.

Harvey’s Lake has a lot of lakeside development, and gets quite a bit of motor boat traffic on summer weekends, but probably not too much this time of year. It is the largest natural lake in PA. It is a pleasant paddle if you don’t mind looking at all the lakeside cabins and boat houses, as long as it is not overrun with motor boats.

no kayak registration in PA
You don’t need to register a kayak in the state of PA (though the requirements have confused enough people that many do anyway – the used kayak I just bought came with a state registration I just threw away. The state is happy to take your money if you want to give it to them even when it is not necessary.)

But you are required to have an annual state sticker to use any state-maintained boat ramps (you can get a day pass at a park office.) But at this time of year no one is likely to challenge you for not having one even in such areas. In fact, in 6 years of kayaking on multiple PA waterways I have only once had a ranger check my sticker and I have often been out with no sticker or an expired one in state ramp zones.

Majors streams and rivers and any non-state park lakes have no restrictions at all. Check the USGS gauges anywhere you go first though – we had a lot of flooding last week and everything has been high and fast with many new strainers, at least midstate and towards the west.

Good info
Got gear a-plenty for any climate. Just looking for a breaktime paddle place so lakes will do fine. Long boat not ww boat.

Thanks to all.

See you on the water,


The River Connection, Inc.

Hyde Park, NY

There’s Prompton Dam, 3 mile lake about
35 minutes from Scranton…“out the Casey”. It DOES freeze early, I’ll check it for you the Sunday before. I would also like to join you. Lunch is on me as I’m still appriciative for the Prijon Cruiser you sold me. Dennis

Lake Scranton is a reservoir.

– Last Updated: Dec-08-10 9:31 AM EST –

People can walk/jog around it but boating is prohibited. Lackawanna State Park is
OK, per a call to the office at 570-945-3239.
Shirley said it might be iced in tho, you might want to call. It is much closer than the Paupack or Harvey's Lake from downtown Scranton.
You will need a PA sticker, as it is a State Boat ramp. Your NY State sticker should be OK, if there is reciprocity.

I will be working Mon, 10-8:30, but I, like Suntan, would like to meet you for a snack or a drink in the evening if convenient. I live 5 minutes from the State Park, and work in Scranton.

Lake Winola
Lake Winola is another good option besides Lackawanna State Pack. Lake Winola has a PA Fish & Boat commision launch.

KAPS, our restuarant in Laplume is open again and it’s great!


Global warming, please
With single digits (temps, not fingers) it’s not looking promising to find any non-iced-out water on the 20th so Dennis, Scott & betmkaplan, I’m always up for food if you want to grab something, sounds great. I’ve an appoiontment around 2pm but clear after that, other than driving back to Hyde Park.

Jack - thank you again for all the info. PS - who’s this Irish Navy crew?

See you on the water,


The River Connection, Inc.

Hyde Park, NY

Prompton Dam is off the list. It’s ok
ice fishing…LOL