Kayaking Schuykill

Schuylkill River Kayak Rentals

For the Schuylkill River kayak rental program, we meet clients streamside at certain river access points along the Schuylkill River Water Trail. Unless you’re on the “Lock 60 Loop” trip, everyone then takes a short shuttle ride with the kayak trailer in tow upstream to put-in on the river at another access point. After disembarking the shuttle, distributing gear and conducting a short orientation, you’ll begin your on-water kayak adventure.

 

You’ll paddle downstream enjoying wildlife sightings and the beautiful tree-lined scenery to the take-out access point at which we originally met and where you parked your car. A VTS staff member will be at the take-out upon your arrival.

 

The access points are all located in local county/township parks and offer beautiful settings for an after-paddle picnic. Some even offer hiking opportunities and many offer easy access to the Schuylkill River Trail on which you can bike or enjoy a wonderful hike.

3 Hour Rental Trips

Timeline for 3-hour trips:

 

  • Total Trip Time: 3 hrs. – begins at meeting time and includes intros, gear outfitting, instruction and kayaking, and portage as delineated below

  • Meeting Time: we meet at the time for which you book.

  • Shuttle Departure Time: see below. Depends on which trip

  • Shuttle Length: see below. Depends on which trip

  • Put-In Time: up to 30 min. (potentially significantly shorter) from the meeting time.

  • On-Water Time Allotment: no less than 2 hrs.

  • Take-Out Time: 3 hrs. from initial meeting time (the time for which you booked)

  • Restroom: porta-potty at put-in and take-out

  • Experience Level: Great for beginners, including for those first-time kayakers.

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THE "LOCK 60 LOOP"
MONT CLARE / PHOENIXVILLE

  • Description: This 4 mile loop combines a calm and scenic downriver paddle on the Schuylkill with a tranquil return float on the historic Oaks Reach canal that ends at the restored and fully operational Lock 60. Enjoy sighting of turtles ducks, geese, blue heron and many other wildlife along the canal.

  • Meeting Location: Lock 60 Recreation Area, which is also the take-out location

  • Put-In Location: Lock 60 Recreation Area

  • Take-Out Location: Lock 60 Recreation Area, canal side, which is where your car is parked

  • Portage: To get from the Schuylkill to the canal, you have to carry your kayak 150 yds. on a grassy trail.

  • Local Food/Drink Rec.: 

 

GANSHAHAWNY PARK
DOUGLASSVILLE

 
TO

RIVERFRONT PARK
POTTSTOWN

  • Description: A short but sweet paddle that introduces you to the wild beauty of the Schuylkill River. The hallmarks are calm slow moving water, a diversity of stately trees lining the banks, birds soaring above, great blue heron stalking fish in the shallows and hopeful sightings of eagles, osprey, kingfisher, great egrets, turtles, frogs and fish.

  • Meeting Location: Pottstown Riverfront Park, which is also the take-out location

  • Shuttle Departure Time: 10 minutes after meeting time

  • Shuttle Length: 10 min. shuttle provided from Pottstown Riverfront Park to Ganshahawny Park

  • Put-In Location: Ganshahawny Park

  • Take-Out Location: Pottstown Riverfront Park, which is where your car is parked

  • Local Food/Drink Rec.:

Kayaking Pottstown

4 Hour Rental Trip

GANSHAHAWNY PARK
DOUGLASSVILLE

 
TO

TOWPATH PARK

POTTSTOWN

  • Description: This trip adds 1 hr. onto the 3 hr. Ganshahawny Park to Pottstown Riverfront Park trip. After paddling the Ganshahawny Park to Pottstown Riverfront Park section, take a stretch, bathroom and food break and explore Pottstown Riverfront Park before pushing off downstream to the scenic Towpath Park while exploring a 1 mile long series of river islands.

  • Experience Level: Great for beginners, including for those first-time kayakers.

  • Meeting Location: Towpath Park, which is also the take-out location

  • Total Trip Time: 4 hrs. – begins at meeting time and includes intros, shuttle, gear outfitting, instruction and kayaking

  • Meeting Time: we meet at the time for which you book

  • Shuttle Info: shuttle departs 10 min. after meeting time* and is a 10 min. ride from Towpath Park to Ganshahawny Park

  • Put-In Time & Location: up to 30 min. (potentially significantly shorter) from arriving at Ganshahawny Park.

  • On-Water Time Allotment: no less than 3 hrs.

  • Take-Out Time & Location: 4 hrs. from initial meeting time (the time for which you booked) at Towpath Park

  • Restroom: porta potty at put-in and take-out

  • Local Food/Drink Rec.

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5 Hour Rental Trip

Kayaking Monte Clare.jpg

 

LOCK 60 REC AREA
MONT CLARE / PHOENIXVILLE

 

TO

BETZWOOD PARK

VALLEY FORGE

  • Description: You put-in at Lock 60 on the Schuylkill, the same as for the “Lock 60 Loop” trip. After paddling past the portage take-out for the “Lock 60 Loop” trip, you’ll soon encounter an avoidable Class I+ rapid. After a small portage around the rapid, you’ll continue to paddle the calm, flat and very scenic river’s big bends as you paddle pass the mouth of the Perkiomen Creek and through Valley Forge National Historic Park.

  • Experience Level: Novice. More appropriate for those who have prior kayaking experience in moving water. The most active feature on this trip is an easily avoidable Class I+ rapid.*

  • Meeting Location: Betzwood Park, which is also the take-out location

  • Total Trip Time: 5 hrs. – begins at meeting time and includes intros, shuttle, gear outfitting, instruction and kayaking

  • Meeting Time: we meet at the time for which you book.

  • Shuttle Info: shuttle departs 10 min. after meeting time and is a 10 min. ride from Betzwood Park to Lock 60 Recreation Area

  • Put-In Time & Location: up to 30 min. (potentially significantly shorter) from arriving at Lock 60 Recreation Area.

  • On-Water Time Allotment: no less than 4 hrs. 

  • Take-Out Time & Location: 5 hrs. from initial meeting time (the time for which you booked) at Betzwood Park

  • Restroom: porta potty at put-in and take-out

  • Local Food/Drink Rec.

* Please note that the rapid is off limits and you are not permitted to kayak through it. We explain in detail before you begin your trip when to expect the rapid and how to avoid it. You are responsible for ensuring your personal safety and for following the provided instructions. Please call for questions.

Please do not be late. We run multiple kayak trips daily and operate in adherence to a strict put-in and

take-out schedule. We do not wait for late arrivals beyond the 10 minute window / shuttle departure time as it could affect the daily trip schedule.


Paddle times are estimates and can decrease or increase depending on numerous factors including, but not limited to, the amount of rentals on a trip, experience of paddler(s) and environmental conditions such as rain, wind, river depth and river flow.

Put-in times are estimates. Generally, you put-in onto the river up to 30 min. (potentially significantly shorter) from arriving at the put-in location. Main factor is amount of kayak rentals on the trip. You put-in on the river after we take the kayaks off the trailer, distribute gear and conduct a PA State mandated orientation to safety, navigation and kayaking.

Life jacket must be worn at all times, even if you bring your own boat

The following is provided for every kayak rental: shuttle, kayak, paddle, life jacket with whistle, waterproof map, handheld bilge pump, sponge, waterproof bag and dry storage hatch

Venture Flex Recreational Kayaks

  • single sit-in 

  • skeg

  • twist lock footrests

  • 10’8”

  • 25” wide

  • max paddler weight 265lbs

  • adjustable high backrest

  • adjustable deluxe padded seat

  • dry storage hatch

  • bungee cord lashes

 

Venture Islay Cruiser Recreational Kayak

  • single sit-in

  • twist lock footrests

  • 12’5”

  • 26” wide

  • max paddler weight 275lbs

  • adjustable high backrest

  • adjustable deluxe padded seat

  • dry storage hatch

  • bungee cord lashes

Perception Cove 145T

  • tandem sit-in

  • adjustable footrests

  • 14’6”

  • 31.25” wide

  • max paddler weight 550lbs

  • adjustable high backrest

  • adjustable deluxe padded seat

  • dry storage hatch

  • bungee cord lashes

 

Wilderness Systems Pamlico 135T

  • tandem sit-in

  • adjustable padded footrests

  • 13’6”

  • 31” wide

  • max paddler combined weight 500lbs

  • adjustable high backrest

  • adjustable deluxe padded seat

  • dry storage hatch

  • bungee cord lashes

PREMIUM RENTAL RECREATIONAL KAYAKS

SHUTTLE SERVICE

  • 15 passenger 2019 Ford Transit Mid Roof Height with roof rack

  • Large commercial kayak trailer capable of holding a variety of paddle boats

  • BYOKayaking - use of only the shuttle service is permitted

  • Available for support services for single or multi-day trips (shuttle, resupply, etc). Call to inquire.

  • Self-shuttling of persons is permitted (arrange your own transportation, but use our rental kayaks and shuttle service for the kayaks)

  • Self-carry of rental boats is not permitted.

All rental kayaks must be used on the trip for which you book

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