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Water trails are boat routes suitable for canoes, kayaks and small motorized watercraft. Like conventional trails, water trails are recreational corridors between specific locations. Water trails are comprised of access points, boat launches, day use sites, and -- in some cases -- overnight camping areas. Each water trail is unique, a reflection of Pennsylvania's diverse geology, ecology and communities.

Pennsylvania Water Trails embrace the "Leave No Trace" code of outdoor ethics that promotes the responsible use & enjoyment of the outdoors.


Water trail guides show "trail heads" (boat launch and take-out points) and provide background about the scenic, historic and geologic points of interest along the way. Throw in a little fishing, wildlife watching, and camping and you can see how water works wonders in Pennsylvania.

Water Trail Guides/Maps page - Search by Trail Use and select "Water Trails"


The Commission's Adopt an Access Program provides volunteers the opportunity to help keep Pennsylvania's public fishing and boating access areas clean and beautiful.


Boat Smart From the Start: Wear Your Life Jacket

One wearable, Coast Guard approved Personal Flotation Devices (PFD or life jacket) in serviceable condition and of the appropriate size is required for each person in your boat.

PFD's must be worn by all children 12 years and younger on all boats 20 feet and less in length, while under way, and on all canoes and kayaks. All others are strongly encouraged to wear a PFD.

Beware of Hazards

Hazards on the water appear in many forms: dams, submerged objects, cold water, fast-changing weather, sun stroke and current. These hazards aren't always obvious. Boaters need to recognize these dangers and be ready to avoid them at all times. Developing a keen appreciation and understanding of the overall "boating environment" lets boaters avoid hazards on the water.

Be Legal to Launch

All motorboats must be registered; non-powered boats (such as canoes and kayaks) using PFBC properties must either be registered or display a valid launch permit.

Don't Drink and Boat

Operating watercraft, including canoes, kayaks, and rafts, under the influence of alcohol or drugs is illegal. The law is strongly enforced for user safety.