Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area | Outdoorsy

Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area
Guide

Introduction

The sheer number of camping options and amenities available at Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area is a compelling reason to visit the park on your next RV holiday. From developed campgrounds that offer RV and tent camping, to group campsites, backcountry camping areas, and river camps, opportunities to relax and have fun in the park are endless.

At Delaware Water Gap NRA, paddlers enjoy slipping down the Delaware River between the forested mountains; hikers explore the length and breadth of the park; and anglers wade the streams and waters for trout and other fish species. This 109 sq. mile NRA is also perfect for bird watching, swimming, and picnicking. Activities like cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and ice climbing also make the park a popular destination in winter.

Game hunting in Delaware Water Gap NRA is a well-loved activity, particularly as hunting for pheasant, whitetail deer and bear is allowed in most parts of the park.

Delaware Water Gap NRA was established in 1965.

Park Alerts (7)

[Caution] Limited Services Available

Know Before You Go: Emergency and maintenance services are limited. All buildings and bathrooms are closed. Pack in and pack out all trash. Avoid crowded trailheads.

[Caution] Mandatory Lifejacket

Wearing a lifejacket is MANDATORY for everyone recreating on the river between November 1 and April 30.

[Caution] Old Mine Road Closed through Worthington State Forest

Worthington State Forest is closed, including all state forest trails, parking areas, and the lower end of Old Mine Road, from the 3-minute light to the NPS boundary 6 miles north of the light. Old Mine Road within the park remains open.

[Information] Headquarters Building Closed for Renovations

The park headquarter building is closed for renovations. Visitor services have been temporarily relocated to Bushkill Meeting Center during the renovations. Bushkill Meeting Center located at 6414 Milford Rd (HWY 209), Bushkill, PA 18324.

[Information] Winter Closures

Visitor services and maintenance operations are reduced during the winter months when staffing levels and visitation are at their lowest. This includes the closure of some roads and visitor use sites. Winter closures are in effect through May 22.

[Park Closure] Temporary Closure of Park Facilities

Following guidance from the CDC, all public bathrooms & facilities are temporarily closed. Park trails & parking areas remain open except for those closed for repairs or the winter season and those at PEEC. Parking areas at Kittatinny Point are closed.

[Caution] Mile 13-14 of Old Mine Road delays Monday-Friday starting March 17

A one-mile section of Old Mine Road between Millbrook and Flatbookville, NJ (mile-markers 13 to 14) will experience traffic delays Monday through Friday through the end of June to complete repairs to this heavily damaged section of roadway.

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Camping Accommodations

40'
Max RV length
40'
Max trailer Length
Electrical hookup
Water hookup
Generator use
Food storage
Sewer hookup
Dogs & cats

RV Rentals in Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area

Transportation

Driving

Delaware Water Gap NRA sits between Interstate 80 and Interstate 84 located to the south and north respectively. Accessibility to the park from Pennsylvania is via US Highway 209, while Old Mine Road is the access road on the New Jersey side. Certain roads around the park such as Blue Mountain Lakes Road (in New Jersey), Skyline Drive (in New Jersey), and the access road to Dingmans Falls (in Pennsylvania) parking area are closed seasonally. There are no driving restrictions within the park.

Parking

Parking lots are available within Delaware Water Gap NRA for vacationers and visitors to park their RVs, trailers and vehicles while at the park. The campgrounds also have parking pads available for one rig per campsite. There are no driving restrictions within Delaware Water Gap NRA.

Public Transportation

Martz-Trailways offers public bus services from New York City to Delaware Water Gap. The Monroe County Transit Authority also provides bus services with stops at Delaware Water Gap. In summer, free bus services are available on weekends to select beaches, river accesses, and trailheads in the park.

Campgrounds and parking in Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area

Campsites in Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area

Reservations camping

Dingmans Campground

Dingmans Campground in Delaware Water Gap NRA features 136 pet-friendly campsites that offer various camping options, including RV camping. Some of the wooded and river’s edge campsites in the campground are equipped with electric and water hookups for RVs. RV length limit at the campground is 40 feet.

There are recreational opportunities at the campground including canoeing/kayaking, hiking and fishing. Campers can also enjoy volleyball and horseshoes in the campground. Amenities within the campground include toilets, potable water, showers, and picnic tables.

Quiet hours in the campground are from 10pm to 6am. You can stay up to 14 consecutive days.

Reservations are accepted at the campground.

Seasonal activities in Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area

Fall

Picnicking

There are so many great spots for you to enjoy picnics at Delaware Water Gap NRA. Although there are no grills anywhere in the park, you can bring yours to any of the picnic sites, except to Kittatinny Point and George W. Childs Park. Firewood is available in the park, so picnickers are prohibited from bringing wood from outside the park. Most of the picnic areas in the park are open to pets except on certain dates. Feel free to consult the park’s Information Center for these dates.

Boating/Canoeing

Some of the best possible boating and canoeing experiences are enjoyed on the Middle Delaware National Scenic and Recreational River by RV campers who get to sail and paddle on the river through rural landscapes. Beginner and expert paddlers alike have fun on the river and get to relax on the park’s water.

If you visit the park on summer weekends with your own canoe and kayak, you can enjoy free shuttle services, however, if you don’t have your vessels, you can take advantage of the several authorized liveries that rent canoes, rafts and kayaks.

Summer

Swimming

There are three beaches with lifeguards at Delaware Water Gap NRA where visitors and vacationers can enjoy safe swimming in the Delaware River. These beaches are Milford Beach, Pennsylvania; Smithfield Beach, Pennsylvania; and Turtle Beach, New Jersey. At these beaches, restroom and picnic facilities are available, with the exception of grills, which are not provided nor allowed.

As you take a dip in the Delaware River, you are advised to not swim in areas outside the lifeguarded beaches as strong currents, changing river conditions, and sharp drop-offs are common. It’s best to wear a properly fitting life jacket too when swimming.

Hiking

Delaware Water Gap NRA features numerous hiking trails that are available all-year for visitors and vacationers to enjoy. With each season comes a special feature on the park’s trails. For example, deciduous leaves are absent on the trails in winter, but instead new vistas are opened, foundations and stone walls are revealed, and evidence of past residents are clearly displayed. In summer, the hemlock forests and rolling streams provide beautiful scenery for retreats and refreshing hangout points along the trails. Visit the park in autumn? Then you get to enjoy crisp air along the trails that will sharpen your senses and keep you alert.

You’ll find the park’s trail maps at the Visitor Center.

Winter

Birding

Over 260 bird species have been identified at Delaware Water Gap NRA, owing to the diverse landscapes and landforms within the park that serve as home to breeding and migrating birds. The rivers and streams in the park host birds such as Louisiana waterthrush and bald eagles. At the hemlock-dominated ravines, acadian flycatchers, blackburnian and black-throated green warblers, and hermit thrush are common.

You’ll see grasshopper sparrow and bobolink breeding in the grassland areas, while herons and shorebirds inhabit the park’s wetlands. Virtually every part of the park features one bird species or another. So, keep exploring and keep viewing.

Spring

Fishing

Delaware Water Gap NRA offers excellent opportunities for fishing and angling. With a total of 61 identified species in the park, there is no shortage of recreational fishing options for angling enthusiasts. Of all the fish species in the park, 10 are listed are rare, endangered or threatened; 44 are native to the region, while 14 are native to North America.

The native fish species that are most associated with recreational fishing in the park are American shad, brook trout, yellow perch, and pumpkinseed. Delaware River’s clean waters consist of striped bass and Eastern mudminnow.