You are also welcome to join SWA on interactive sites:
Swatara QR Code. Save to your phone.
It's all about Clean Water. Post your pictures of our events, water conservation, floods, pollution.
Share your memories about the Swatara.... Our projects and areas of
interest include the
Bordner Cabin, Eagle Scout Projects, PA Conservation Corps,
Swatara State Park, Swatara River, Swatara Sojourn, Swatara
Water Trail, Tenaska, Swatara Watershed Park, and
Planning a Swatara
Updated Map Swatara
Water Trail map front 3.15MB 10.14.2017.pdf
Swatara Water Trail map and guide 7MB 10.12.2017.pdf|
Public access points about every
For comparison, when the
Harpers gauge at our
launch @ 1929 Blacks Bridge Road, Annville reads the following
Road to site #1 is almost covered, not accessible
and partly flooded;
7’ our ramp is covered to
the top gravel border;
9’ the swell puts water onto sites 1-4 & site 8;
10.56', only sites 26-35 do not flood.
National Weather Service provides forecasts for Harper's
and Hershey gauges. Check the gauge nearest your start point.
Beginners should reschedule at 2.2' deep.
if experienced, but water is rising between 3.5' & 4', or below .4'.
Kayaks may float a bit
lower. Memorial Lake is an option when the Swatara is too high or
|Use caution at dams: With groups, avoid
low-head dam in Jonestown. Uneven portage on left bank, which disappears
into tree line in high water. Hershey dam portage is also on the left. Long, but flat, mowed route. Take out at feeder stream on left before warning sign.|
|U-Tow Canoes Available
Canoe Use agreement:
CANOE USE CONTRACT.pdf
Seasonal Primitive Camping
Fishing, hiking, picnicking
Visit the Bordner Cabin in Swatara
Bordner Cabin Drive
thru Swatara State Park 9AM-3PM the 2nd Fri & Sat monthly & 4th Fri & Sat
Mar, Apr, Sep & Oct.
Most recent Newsletter:
2017 Swatara News .pub.pdf
About the Swatara Watershed
Rivers Conservation Plan
Swatara on Great Nonprofits:
Reduce Your Carbon Footprint
18th Annual Swatara Sojourn
May 6 & 7, 2006
"Water Under the Bridge"
||If you went on this trip and would like a souvenir CD of
the hundreds of still pictures taken on the Swatara Sojourn, please
send a donation of $5 to
||cover the cost of the CD, case, postage and handling to 2501
Cumberland St., Suite 4, Lebanon PA 17042. Similarly, for a $10
donation you will
||receive a DVD of the event. All movie pictures were
taken from shore.
up steps @ Indian Echo
pier @ Clifton Bridge
20 exits @ Fulling Mill Road
Thank you for taking part in the Swatara Sojourn!
Do you know how special you are? Your team work stood out in my mind as the
best effort ever on a Swatara Sojourn. Congratulations, and job well done.
Your comradery and friendship are touching.
Looking at all of the trash pulled from the
Swattie, I think we could both build a house and set up house keeping. Let's
see, there were the front steps, the toilet and seat, siding, a table, chairs,
an aluminum pot and frying pan, television, and a street light for outside.
There was a culvert pipe that took two canoes to bring in, a wheel barrow to
do the yard work, a new side panel for the bed of a pickup truck, and a boat
for the driveway brought in by Justin, Austin, Doug, and Don. Ted Walke, from
the PA Fish & Boat Commission was along, and took down the ID numbers to try
to contact the owner. The tire trailer was too full, and when I came back
Monday morning with Tom and Jack, everything was gone, courtesy of Middletown.
The aluminum john boat that was wrapped around a bridge pier was left behind.
To free it, trees would have had to been removed. It stands as a monument to
the force of water.
And didn't the animals put on a great show
for us? Two osprey dove into the water to catch fish--right in front of me.
Wow. Then there was the snapper turtle whose shell measured about one foot
across. But not to be outdone, a beaver took a limb across the Swattie too.
Other birds included ducks, geese, sand pipers, a red winged black bird, king
fishers, great blue heron...the list goes on.
Did you enjoy Matthew Dodd singing and
telling Union Canal stories? The red-tailed hawk, owl, baby opossums, and
black snake from Dauphin County Wildlife Rescue sure seemed to be popular
We did get a second load of tires from the
Fulling Mill Road site, bringing the total to 100 tires. Again this
year, Brian Kettering was gracious in accepting our haul. The metal was
removed from Hershey Highmeadow Campgrounds on Tuesday, and taken to
Again, you are number one in my book. Thank
you! Jo Ellen Litz
With regard to the boat
(PA 6224 SS), we located the owner in our database and our Bureau of Law
Enforcement will be notifying the individual of the location of their boat.
Since the last registration expired in 1997, there's a chance it may not be
reclaimed. Our regional office will be notified of the boat's location at the
access. If it remains unclaimed, then it'll eventually be up for grabs.
Ted Walke, PA Fish & Boat Commission
THANK YOU, So much for accommodating troop 20's early exit. They all had fun
and this was the first weekend trip they took that it DID NOT rain in years
they have a knack for choosing rainy trips but I chose this one so that should
say something. HEE HEE! Once again I had a great time and loved the lunch
music and critter lady and leaving the Swattie allot cleaner! we'll be back
next year...can I sign up now so I'm first? I'll keep in touch.
I just want to write to thank you for organizing the wonderful Swatara
Sojourn this past weekend. Our family had a great time and we couldn't believe
that we did not capsize! (Thanks to volunteers that keep us
safe and going).
We actually decided to "camp" at home Saturday because my son was still
recovering from his cold. Sorry we did not get a chance to join the dinner, to
say good bye and to say "sail well."
Anyway, thank you so much and have a wonderful summer! Jun Li
|Water lovers clean up
Saturday was a good day to get out on the water. It was a day
full of sunshine with mild temperatures and a brisk breeze.
Add a batch of tires, a TV and vast numbers of bottles and
cans, and you’ve got it all.
Volunteers took to the Swatara Creek yesterday in canoes
and kayaks for the 18th Annual Swatara Sojourn, a canoe and
kayak trip organized by the Swatara Creek Watershed
The yearly journey is more than fun and relaxation. Its
specific purpose is to help clean up the garbage that
constantly makes its way into the water. And what a cleanup it
In a 12-mile stretch of the two-day, 23-mile trip, from its
beginning at Blacks Bridge Road Campground to its halfway
point at Boat House Road Park, volunteers pulled in a wide
array of items from the creek — children’s toys, a television
set, 50 tires and a horde of bottles and cans.
“I think the most interesting thing that I’ve seen pulled
from the water was a hood to a 1951 Nash automobile,” said
Jack Stouffer, a Lebanon native and 10-year volunteer with the
Most of the junk that ends up in the creek is a result of
flooding, said Jo Ellen Litz, president of the Swatara Creek
Watershed Association for the last 20 years.
“The creek will overrun its banks, and when it recedes,
whatever it took with it ends up in the water,” Litz said.
Keeping the Swatara clean is important to the surrounding
region, Litz said, because it contributes to the area’s
Litz was impressed with this year’s turnout and said it’s
the largest she has seen in the Sojourn’s 18 years.
“We had about 93 volunteers sign up, not to mention the 20
or more shore helpers,” she said. “Some people sign up for
both days, and others sign up for just one.”
This year’s group of volunteers was just as diverse as
their watercraft. Single- and double-seat kayaks and canoes
hit the water holding by friends and families and Boy Scout
and Girl Scout troops, among others.
“I would hope to relax, maybe get some sunburn, maybe get
wet,” said Scout Patrol Leader Matthew Hall of Myerstown.
Hall and his Troop 20 of Myerstown joined up to help clean
the Swattie. Troop Master Dennis Palm said one of the most
important things he would like his troop learn from the
experience is “an appreciation for the conservation effort.”
This was the first time Troop 20 has been involved with the
Sojourn, Palm said.
The Sojourn volunteers made their way from lunch at Boat
House Road Park to an overnight stay at Hershey Meadows
Campground. They will end their trip today at the Susquehanna
To become a part of the volunteer work to conserve the
Swatara and other local waterways or for other information,