Potomac River Float trip: Harper's Ferry to Brunswick

This is one of the best local stretches of the Potomac for smallmouth fishing. I'll send an e-mail with additional details as we get closer to the event, however we will be putting into the river at Potomac Wayside in VA and floating to the Brunswick Campground. Plan on a fairly long day, however the shuttle will be set up so you can go at your own pace if you choose. There are several class-2 rapids on this stretch. Experienced members will ensure that everyone takes the correct routes through the rapids.

Please bring at least $5.00 to help cover the cost of shuttle service. Trip is limited to PRSC members. Visit www.prsc.org to join or attend our meeting on Wed., July 30th, at 7:30 PM at the Vienna Fire Station.

Here's the plan:

FIRST we will gather at 7:00 to put the boats on the shore at Potomac Wayside. THEN we will drive to the Brunswick Family Campground and park our cars. Someone will stay behind to watch the boats. Campground staff will shuttle us back up to the put-in. That way your car will be at the take-out.


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  • Wallace H.

    Great day! Great fishing! Great friends!

    August 18

  • Clyde W.

    Great Trip! Thanks to all of you that helped the newbie.

    August 18

  • Mark M.

    Hi Herman. A sit-on-top is certainly fine for this trip. That takes care of the equipment side of the question. I would say from the perspective of paddling capability it is completely a personal choice. This would not be my recommended float for first time on white water. However it's not what I'd call extreme so a lot depends on what you're up for personally. If you're somewhat adventurous and physically fit I see no big issue. I would suggest reading a description of class 2 whitewater as a starting point. I would rate one stretch of this float II+. http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Scale_of_River_Difficulty

    August 8

    • Herman Y.

      Hi Mark - Ok that doesn't look so bad. I'm good enough shape to handle that. I've done that in a canoe and I feel confident enough about my kayaking skills.

      August 12

  • Clyde W.

    Hi, Marty
    Sorry you cannot go, but it did bump me up the waitlist. Right now I can go. It will be my first club trip. Mark - a few quick questions:

    -How late do you think we will be on the water? -Do people typically get out and wade or is it better to stay in the boat (do I need my felt boots or not)

    1 · August 11

    • Mark M.

      Clyde ... Like Marty said, no felt soled boots in MD. Some of us wade at various points on the river, some not at all. Purely preference. You will be able to get off the water at any time you reach the end. You can choose how much to fish and how much to paddle. Your car will be waiting for you. I think folks generally finish up this float any time from 3 PM to 6, but that's just a ballpark.

      August 11

    • Clyde W.

      I ordered boots without Felt - we will see if Amazon delivers. I have noticed the trend away from felt and have been meaning to get a rubber gear. Thanks for keeping me out of trouble!

      August 12

  • Marty B.

    Unfortunately I've had a schedule conflict arise this weekend, and I won't be able to make this trip. Hope to catch up with some of you on the river soon.

    August 11

    • Mark M.

      Sorry you can't make it Marty.

      August 11

  • Clyde W.

    I am waitlisted. I have a one person Kayak. If anyone has an open seat in a canoe, let me know if I can join you.

    August 10

  • Clarence

    If anyone has an open spot on their boat, I'd be happy to join them. Otherwise I can bring my canoe.

    July 8

    • Mark M.

      Clarence ... As far as I know everyone is using a solo boat.

      August 9

  • Dominic

    I am currently in Afghanistan but will be back on break the weekend after this trip. Hopefully someone can organize another trip then. I haven't fished yet this year.

    June 30

    • Mark M.

      Hi Dominic. Best wishes for a safe return. As an experienced member you might consider leading a trip yourself. Just reach out to Kris Andersen, trip coordinator.

      August 8

  • Herman Y.

    Will I have any problems with my sit on top kayak? I'm not familiar with this stretch of the river. I paddle a lot in flatwater, but haven't tried even moderate whitewater in my kayak.

    August 7

    • Leon K.

      No problem. Most of us have sit on tops and we'll assist those not familiar with this section of the river

      2 · August 7

  • Terry C.

    Mark, I am an RSVP yes as soon as I figure out the stupid Meetup which I despise.

    Terry

    June 30

    • Mark M.

      Don't fight it Terry ... it's counter-productive.

      1 · July 2

  • Leon K.

    Mark, Is this the put-in near the 340 bridge?

    June 30

    • Mark M.

      Sorry for the late reply Leon ... yes the put-in is just above the bridge. Approx. 1/8 river miles. In Google Earth search for "Potomac Wayside Purcellville, VA."

      July 2

  • Wallace H.

    Hello Mark, I sincerely hope the transportation you arrange can handle my one man pontoon boat. I can take it apart, if necessary. I am looking forward to this section of the Shenandoah. A great section to fish. Thanks for inviting me. Sincerely, Wallace

    June 30

    • Mark M.

      BTW this is the Potomac. You've done this stretch before.

      June 30

  • Mark M.

    No problem Wallace. The way this will work is we'll put in at Potomac Wayside, leave one person with the boats, then drive to the takeout. Shuttle operator will take us back up river and your vehicle will be waiting at the take-out. Glad you can join us!

    June 30

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