Camping, Rafting and Kayaking at the Ohiopyle State Park

by PennPaddler

ohiopyle_stateparkOhiopyle State Park
Ohiopyle State Park is located south of Pittsburgh, in the Laurel Mountains of Fayette and Somerset Counties, and encompasses about 19,052 acres of natural beauty. The Youghiogheny River is the highlight of the park and provides some of the best whitewater kayaking and rafting in the eastern United States. Located in the park is the Falls Day Use Area. This area provides parking, modern restrooms, restaurants, overlooks, trails and bridges with magnificent whitewater scenery.

Whitewater Kayaking and Rafting at Ohiopyle State Park
The Youghiogheny River has whitewater boating for all experience levels. Only qualified whitewater rafts, kayaks and closed-deck canoes are permitted in the river. Inexperienced paddlers should not attempt the Youghiogheny without an officially licensed guide.

Middle Yough
The Middle Yough begins at the Ramcat put-in and ends near the town of Ohiopyle. This section contains class I and II rapids and is a great whitewater experience for beginning kayakers or experienced canoers. This section of the Yough is ideal for family rafting trips and provides a thrilling adventure without many of the natural hazards present on the Lower Yough.

Lower Yough
The Lower Yough begins at the Ohiopyle Falls and flows seven miles downstream to the Bruner Run take-out. The numerous class III and IV rapids create a rafting environment that should only be attempted by experienced whitewater boaters. Inexperienced whitewater boaters should run this section of the river on a guided raft trip with an officially licensed guide. This section of river contains natural hazards such as undercut rocks, ledges and swift currents. Fatalities have occurred on this section of the Youghiogheny.

Guided Trips
Inexperienced boaters should not attempt the Youghiogheny River without qualified guides. Outfitted trips are available from licensed commercial outfitters that provide rafts, guides, all necessary safety equipment, and transportation to and from the river. Contact a licensed commercial outfitter to arrange a whitewater trip on the Youghiogheny.

Laurel Highlands River Tours
800-4-RAFTIN (800-472-3846)
www.laurelhighlands.com

Ohiopyle Trading Post
888-OHIOPYLE (888-644-6795)
www.ohiopyletradingpost.com

White Water Adventurers
800-WWA-RAFT (800-992-7238)
www.wwaraft.com

Wilderness Voyageurs
800-272-4141
www.wilderness-voyageurs.com

Camping at Ohiopyle
Ohiopyle’s Kentuck Campground is open from March through December. There are 226 campsites, 27 of which are walk-in campsites with more privacy. Features include a picnic table, fire ring, parking space, washhouses with hot water and flush toilets, play areas, dumping station and electric hookups. There is also organized group camping for qualified organizations.

Cottages
These attractive cottages have electric lights and outlets for cooking appliances, windows, a screened porch and heater. They sleep five people in a single and double bunk.

Fishing at Ohiopyle State Park
The Youghiogheny River provides great trout fishing opportunity. Fingerling trout are stocked annually throughout the entire section of river within the park. Meadow Run provides trout fishing for anglers who prefer smaller stream fishing.

Natural Attractions
Cascades
This beautiful woodland waterfall in Meadow Run is near the park office. The cool, clean waters of this stream make it a favorite haunt of anglers.

Cucumber Falls
This 30-foot bridal veil waterfall on Cucumber Run is easily reached from Meadow Run Trail and has parking on SR 2019.

Jonathan Run Falls
Several small waterfalls can be seen from Jonathan Run Trail. Just before the trail meets the Youghiogheny River Trail, the largest waterfall tumbles over rocks between rhododendron-lined banks.

Meadow Run Waterslides
The cascading beauty of this unique geologic formation attracts photographers, geologists and recreation enthusiasts. Explore Meadow Run’s ancient streambed to find ripples carved in stone and potholes scoured by spinning rocks and powerful currents.

Ohiopyle Falls
The power and beauty of this 20-foot waterfall make it a central attraction to the park. The best viewing is from the observation deck in the Falls Day Use Area, in the heart of Ohiopyle.

Although campsites are available on a first come basis, it is advisable to reserve your campsite in advance. You can reserve a campsite online by clicking here. Or you can call 888-PA-PARKS.

For more information on visit the Ohiopyle State Park Website.

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