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General Information

Description - In 1955, prior to the construction of dams along Delaware River tributaries, floods in eastern Pennsylvania claimed 90 lives and over $100 million in property damage. A subsequent federal study of the Delaware River Basin included the Blue Marsh Lake project among its recommendations. It was authorized by the 87th Congress through the Flood Control Act of 1962 as a multipurpose project, including flood control, water quality, water supply and recreation. The earthen dam was erected across Tulpehocken Creek, which drains a 175-square-mile area upstream. From its source near Lebanon, it flows eastward nearly 24 miles to the Schuylkill River at Reading. The Blue Marsh Army Corp. of Engineers Project is a recreation haven offering picnicking facilities in Dry Brooks Day Use Area, Dry Brooks Boat Ramp, State Hill Boat Ramp, Stilling Basin and Church Road Access. The area offers an excellent opportunity to observe wildlife in its natural habitat. Hunting is very popular as well with the land bordering the 2,800 acres of State Game Lands 280. Ring-necked pheasant, cottontail rabbit, groundhog, mourning doves, squirrel, waterfowl and white-tailed deer are the most plentiful game in the area. Wonderful trails are provided for hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding. Boating and sailing are enjoyed as well.

Attractions - In 1955, prior to the construction of dams along Delaware River tributaries, floods in eastern Pennsylvania claimed 90 lives and over $100 million in property damage. A subsequent federal study of the Delaware River Basin included the Blue Marsh Lake project among its recommendations.

Blue Marsh Lake was authorized by the 87th Congress through the Flood Control Act of 1962 as a multipurpose project, including flood control, water quality, water supply and recreation.

Tropical Storm Agnes brought torrential rains to eastern Pennsylvania in June 1972. Berks County experienced heavy flooding and millions of dollars in property damage. The chances of another flood of that magnitude have been vastly reduced since completion of the Blue Marsh dam.

The Corps designed the reservoir to hold up to 11 billion gallons above the normal winter elevation, providing protection up to a 100-year flood. Reading, Pottstown, Norristown and parts of Philadelphia, all sites of prior flooding, directly benefit from the presence of Blue Marsh Lake.

The earthen dam was erected across Tulpehocken Creek, which drains a 175-square-mile area upstream. From its source near Lebanon, Pennsylvania, it flows eastward nearly 24 miles to the Schuylkill River at Reading.

Recreation - The Blue Marsh Army Corp of Engineers Project is a recreation delight. The area offers picnicking facilities in Dry Brooks Day Use Area, Dry Brooks Boat Ramp, State Hill Boat Ramp, Stilling Basin and Church Road Access. The area offers an excellent opportunity to observe wildlife in its natural habitat. Hunting is very popular at Blue Marsh Lake, which borders the 2,800 acres of State Game Lands 280. Ring-necked pheasant, cottontail rabbit, groundhog, mourning doves, squirrel, waterfowl and white-tailed deer are the most plentiful game in the area.
Wonderful trails are provided for hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding. Boating and sailing are enjoyed as well.

Climate - Pennsylvania generally has a moist climate with cold winters and warm summers. The Blue Marsh Lake area has cold winter months with temperatures averaging around 24 to 28 degrees Fahrenheit (-4 to -2 degrees Celsius). The area's average summer temperatures range above 74 degrees Fahrenheit (above 23 Celsius).

Location - Located in eastern Pennsylvania, various access locations to the Blue Marsh Lake Army Corp of Engineers Project are available.

The Visitor Center and Dry Brooks Day-use Area is located in Bern Township along Palisades Road.

Located immediately downstream of the dam, the Stilling Basin is where water is released from the dam into Tulpehocken Creek.

State Hill Boat Launch is located in Lower Heidelberg Township, accessible from Brownsville Road.

Sheidy Boat Launch is located south of the town of Bernville along Route 183.

Old Dry Road Farm is a living history farm in Lower Heidelberg Township.


Current Conditions & Trip Reports

Trip Reports:
Add your own trip Report! Newly re-released feature. One of the most popular features on Wildernet, trip reports allow you to share your experiences with others. This is an invaluable resource for determining what to expect on your outdoor adventure, so please participate! To prevent spamming, you must be a registered user of Wildernet in order to submit a trip report

Filed By: JAMES MEYER (exton, pa)
Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: Largmouth not SMALLMOUTH

Filed By: JAMES MEYER (exton, pa)
Number of People Encountered: 25-50 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: trying to fish with big motor boats flying by was dificult, in the evening when the speed boats left the bass bite was good with very large smallmouth taken on 3 and 4 inch rapalas just off the main island.


More Information

Contact Information:
Blue Marsh Lake, 1268 Palisades Drive , Leesport, PA, 19533-9533, Phone: 610-376-6337, Fax: 610-376-1919

Additional Information:
Hershey / Dutch Country Area - History and natural delights intermingle with the hand-plowed farm fields of the Amish and the scent of the Hershey Chocolate Factory.
Pennsylvania Lakes and Reservoirs - Pennsylvania boasts as having more flowing water than any other state in the "lower 48." Whether you're looking for limestone streams, famous for trout fishing or whitewater rapids for an afternoon thrill ride, this state can fulfill that desire. The keystone state offers over 2,500 lakes and 300 streams. Ricketts Glen State Park is famous for its 30 waterfalls, the highest being a 94 foot tumble. In addition, Pennsylvania is home to the Allegheny National Forest known for its lush hardwoods, rich wildlife and a 12,000 acre lake considered ideal for catching trophy walleye, pike and muskellunge.
Philadelphia, Country-Side, Lehigh Valley Area - The Philadelphia area is historically rich and diverse in natural resources. This beautiful area beacons as a vacation destination.

Links:
Blue Marsh Lake - Official agency website

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