Self-Guided Opportunities
Canoeing and Kayaking
Location Potomac River
Launch Site Bond's Landing
Directions to Launch Site From I-68 take exit 68 (Orleans Road).
Go south on Orleans Road for 5.7 miles.
Turn right onto Oldtown/Orleans Road and continue 2.6 miles.
Turn left onto Carroll Road and continue three miles.
Pass the overlook on the left; pass the Carroll Chimney on the right.
Carroll Road will become Mertens Avenue.
Continue on Mertens Avenue for 1/10 of a mile.
Turn left onto Kasecamp Road and continue for 1.3 miles.
Turn right into Bonds Landing and continue 2/10 of a mile.
Takeout Site Fifteen Mile Creek
Directions to Takeout Site From I-68 take exit 68 (Orleans Road).
Go south on Orleans Road for 5.5 miles.
Turn left onto High Germany Road and continue for .5 miles.
Enter the C&O Canal/Fifteen Mile Creek Aqueduct.
River Distance 9 miles
Time Half day trip
Water Conditions Class I
Skill Level All abilities
Suitable For Families? Yes (with older children able to paddle)
Hazards/Restrictions All paddlers should understand that river conditions vary depending on weather conditions and caution should always be exercised. PFD's are required from November 15 through March 15 and paddlers are encouraged to wear them at all times. Prior to beginning a trip call for river conditions at 703-260-0305.
Potable Water All water should be treated or filtered
Natural Features Scenic Potomac River -- Floodplain shoreline rich and abundant in wildlife including beavers, colorful wood ducks, great blue herons, red-tailed hawks, ospreys and occasionally bald eagles.
Historic/Cultural Features Paddlers will parallel the historic C&O Canal and pass under several railroad bridges. Canoeists can visualize the important role this river played in history. It served as the main source of transportation prior to the automobile. Native American's very existence was dependent on this river. They drank its water, fished it for food and used it to guide them from one hunting ground to another.
Canoe Rentals/Service Allegany Expeditions, 301-722-5170
Adventure Sports, 301-689-0345
Camping Primitive camping available at Green Ridge State Forest, 301-478-3125
Improved camping available at Rocky Gap State Park, 301-777-2139 or 1-888-432-2267
Primitive camping available at National Park Service, 301-739-4200
Other Points of Interest The C&O Canal is a 184.5 mile towpath that runs from Georgetown to Cumberland along the Potomac River.
Other Accommodations Rocky Gap Lodge and Golf Resort, 800-724-0828
Town Hill Hotel Bed and Breakfast, 301-478-2794
Rocky Gap State Park chalet and mini cabins, 301-777-2139
Fees or Permits Camping service charge
Camping permit required
Description This is a relaxing river trip that has several small ripples and rapid areas that give an element of excitement. The adventurer that chooses this trip will pass through scenic areas of rock outcroppings and sheer rock cliffs. Along the trip guests can stop at one of the C&O Canal hiker/biker stops.

  • C&O Canal Companion (Mike High)
  • Land of the Living - History Green Ridge State Forest and Eastern Allegany County (John Mash)
  • Chesapeake and Ohio Canal: A Guide to Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park, Maryland, District of Columbia and West Virginia (National Park Service)
  • Maryland and Delaware Canoe Trails (Edward Gertler)
  • Rocky Gap State Park homepage
Recommended Gear and Safety Tips
  • Spare paddles
  • Knee pads
  • Hat
  • Water