Delaware Kayaking

Broad Creek Osprey Alley

Broad Creek in Western Sussex County, DE offers beautiful kayaking with easy access. Roger C. Fisher River Park on 6th St. in Laurel, DE offers parking, port a potties, and paved ramps. Eight miles downstream, just before Broad Creek meets the Nanticoke River, is Phillips Landing State Park with the same features. Either of these access points can be used for an out and back, or one way with a shuttle. For a longer trip, two miles downstream on the Nanticoke is Cherry Beach Park and boat ramp in Sharptown, MD.

On this beautiful April day we checked the tides and chose a one way trip on the rising tide from Phillips Landing to Laurel. While there were a few fishermen at Phillips Landing, once leaving there we saw no boat traffic. It easily took us two hours to cover the first few miles as the scenery and wildlife sightings resulted in much stopping and watching.

The osprey returned to this part of Delaware mid-April. On this day we saw at least 10 pairs, either nesting, looking for a nest, building a nest, or chasing buzzards away from their nest. We tried to give the osprey a wide berth as they were never happy when we paddled too close. Turtles sat on every log. Beavers have built a number of houses along Broad Creek and on a previous trip we actually spotted a beaver. Bald eagles are abundant along Broad Creek.

When the tide is low there are considerable mud flats with bird activity. A greater yellow legs was busy on one tidal flat. With the low tide there are also numerous gravel bars where one can take a shore break. A fair number of homes exist along Broad Creek, however there are also lengthy stretches without homes. Tidal current on Broad Creek is minimal and one can easily paddle against the tide.

Broad Creek is a good choice for a paddle in the spring when the winds along the more open coastal area are too strong for enjoyable kayaking.

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