Best places for power boating in Pittsburgh and surrounding areas.

rkinrossrkinross Pittsburgh PAPosts: 66Member ✭✭
I have been a sailor for most of my life and have just purchased a 15ft Rinker open bow runabout.  I like to vacation in Deep Creek MD and have rented powerboats from Bills Marine many times while renting houses along the lake.  I took the plunge this year and bought a power boat because I thought using the boat at night would be a plus for fishing and evening cruises around the lake.  The rest of the time while not on vacation I plan to put in on the three rivers mostly at the South Side launch ramp under the Birmingham Bridge in Riverfront Park.  Another place I know about is right below the Emsworth Dam on the Ohio river.  Other areas I am aware of for power boating in the area are the Yough Lake and Conneaut Lake.  Lake Erie is far enough (2hours in each direction) that it makes day trips out of the question for me.    Most of the other PA lakes have the 20hp or less restriction.  I am interested to hear from other members about their favorite places to use their boats.  Also if you have comments about where to avoid I would be interested in hearing about that as well.  



  • Cableguy GregCableguy Greg Pittsburgh, PAPosts: 3,856Member ✭✭✭✭✭
    Welcome to the forum fellow Rinker owner and Pittsburgh boater. The different pools on the three rivers are great to boat in. There is a launch in Sharpsburg at 13th Street that is in the city pool. There is also one in Harmer Twp for that pool if you don't want to lock thru. The sand island above the Hulton Bridge is a great place to hang out in that pool. In the city pool, down below Sandcastle there is some smooth water to tube and ski on. Outside Sandcastle is a great place to anchor out at. The back channel of the Ohio at the tip of Neville Island is also a great anchoring spot. For a lake day trip, you could hit up Shenango Lake. They have a nice campground if you are into camping and boating. Be sure to check out the site for some local information.
    2008 280 Express Cruiser, 6.2MPI, B3, Pittsburgh, PA "Blue Ayes"
    Go Steelers!!!
  • JonnyMJonnyM Pittsburgh, PAPosts: 276Member ✭✭✭
    Welcome rkinross,  This forum is an outstanding place to gather information and share ideas.  I also boat in the Pittsburgh Area.  I boat in the Dashields Pool below the Emsworth Dam around Neville Island.  I don't get out to the area lakes much, but I was at cheat lake in WV last year and had a great weekend.  There are plenty of places to explore on the rivers in PGH.  There is beach bar on Neville Island on the backchannel of the Ohio that we frequent  Good luck, the season is right around the corner!
    "Mosi on Dahn"  2003 Fiesta Vee 270
  • rkinrossrkinross Pittsburgh PAPosts: 66Member ✭✭
    Thanks Greg and JonnyM for the first hand information about boating in Pittsburgh.  I just checked out the site for Pittsburgh that Greg recommended and have found a couple of places I did not know about.  The Loyalhanna Lake National Recreation Area in New Alexandria, PA is one that is new to me and it is only 50 minutes away.  Thanks again, Bob K. 

  • nhsdnhsd Posts: 174Member ✭✭✭
    Although I spend most of my boating time now on the Ohio River near Marietta OH, the pool between Dashields L&D and Montogomery L&D is pretty decent. It is about 25 miles long. It includes the Beaver River with a decent restaurant and fuel, there are a number of good places to anchor for the day and lots of area for water sports. There are a few public ramps, but the best one in my opinion is the ramp at Monaca.


    2002 Captiva 212, 5.0 220 hp, Alpha 1, 1.62 gears

    Moon Township, PA - boating in the Ohio River

  • rkinrossrkinross Pittsburgh PAPosts: 66Member ✭✭

    After using my boat all summer I have a few findings to share on the forum for Pittsburgh boaters.

    I found a really nice ramp provided by the Fish and Game Commission on the Beaver River. It is right next to the New Brighton Marina. To get there from Rt 65 north just turn left at Penn Ave Ext. This is just before the main street through the town of New Brighton and right after passing Monroe Muffler and Brake.  There is a huge grass field located very near the ramp for parking.

    I also drove down to Tappan Lake Park in Ohio to check out their campground and boating facilities. The campground is a very nice, large facility and it seems to be most popular with the RV campers. They are expanding the campground and have just completed a beautiful facility for showers that includes a laundry for campers staying longer than a few days. The paved launch ramp is right in the campground. It has enough room to launch at least 2 boats at a time and it has docks right next to the ramp so you can tie up after launching. There is also a harbor in the campground and for $1 a day you can tie up and leave the boat in the water.  There is also a sandy beach area within walking distance of the campground.  The lake itself is very large, covers 2,350 acres of water and 5,000 acres of surrounding land, and is part of the Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District. The lake has a 399 horsepower limit for boats. The park ranger I spoke with was very friendly and helpful and the campsites are reasonable priced at $25 a day.  There are some rules about alcohol use in the campground but unlike PA it is not completely banned. From Pittsburgh, I took US Route 22 almost the entire way. The road is very good - mostly 4 lane smooth black top all the way down to Cadiz Ohio, then Rt250 to Tappan Lake.

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