Giving Pond Recreation Area
GOOD FOR: All Ages

Source:Outdoors with Kids Philadelphia (AMC Books)
Address:River Road, Upper Black Eddy, PA
Hours:8 a.m. to sunset daily
Fee: Free
Bathrooms: Portable toilet at parking area
Water/Snacks: None


This large, wildlife-rich pond between the Delaware Canal and Delaware River is a great place to learn paddling skills.

Giving Pond Recreation Area
Photo by: Susan Charkes

Giving Pond, a 90-acre pond between the Delaware Canal and Delaware River, is a wonderful place for kids to learn how to canoe or kayak, or to spend time fishing. It also provides opportunities for easy short walks around the pond, and it connects to the Delaware Canal towpath for longer walks.

The pond was reclaimed from a disused quarry in 2002, and became part of the Delaware Canal State Park. It has a long, unobstructed central area and smaller offshoot ponds, as well as several islands. Trees and shrubs line the shores. Over the years that the quarry was not used, water seeped in and eventually rose to ground level. As it did so, it drowned many trees that had been growing on quarry ledges. These snags are still standing along the outer edges of the pond.

For the paddler, the pond combines protected, enclosed areas, a wideopen stretch, and natural obstacles (dead standing trees) to maneuver around. The open area can get windy on days when the weather is changeable, but powerboats (other than those with electric motors) are prohibited. (Note that there is no boat rental at the pond. See Appendix B for nearby outfitters.)

The pond’s inlets, islands, and standing trees are enticing to explore by boat, which makes learning how to get there fun. It’s excellent for novice paddlers to practice how to steer, stop, and reverse a canoe or kayak, and how to read the currents and wind. Even for experienced paddlers the pond is an enjoyable trip. It is full of wildlife, attracting ducks, cormorants, herons, and other waterfowl; sightings of eagles and ospreys are not uncommon. Turtles are abundant, basking on the numerous fallen logs in quiet coves. Kids will enjoy spotting and seeking out wildlife as they explore the pond.

Giving Pond’s standing trees provide excellent habitat for fish. The brushy shoreline near the boat launch is popular with anglers, as is casting a line from a slow-moving boat.

On dry land, you can follow a level and easy trail around the pond, in summer passing through dense patches of wildflowers that attract butterflies. A picnic area overlooks the pond.

From June to October, park staff conduct public paddling programs at Giving Pond on the first and third Saturdays of each month. Call ahead for details.

Remember: Swimming is not permitted. Dog must be leashed. Note that in deer hunting season, bowhunting is permitted. If you’re on the trails, wear blaze orange, or go on Sundays when hunting is prohibited.

Plan B:

Giving Pond is part of Delaware Canal State Park; the canal towpath connects to the pond’s trails.

Where to Eat Nearby:

Return to Frenchtown to find a variety of places to eat.


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