[ADVISORY: Check with Medford Township before attempting to paddle in this area.]
The two-mile Medford Canoe Trail on the Southwest Branch of the Rancocas Creek begins in Medford Park and ends at historic Kirby’s Mill. It offers superb scenery with lush vegetation and tranquil waters. Once an important conduit for trade and commerce, the Rancocas now provides water recreation for kayakers and canoeists. The upper end of the trail is adjacent to the historic Medford village with its shops, restaurants and grand old homes.
The trail head in Medford Park is accessible from Gill Road off Allen Avenue. The most convenient access point is in the Park at the foot of Coates Street where a playground, picnic facilities and parking close to the launch site are available. The trail ends at a landing at Kirby’s Mill on Church Road. From there, the Rancocas continues on its scenic, meandering journey through Burlington County to its juncture with the Delaware River. The stream is navigable from Lumberton to the Delaware River, however the stretch between Kirby’s Mill and Lumberton is currently blocked in a number of places by fallen trees that require difficult portages or liftovers.
[Advisory – As with any natural stream, conditions change regularly and may include blockages from fallen trees or other debris requiring paddlers to portage around obstacles. Volunteers and the Township staff will attempt to remove or report obstacles when they exist. Please consider the potential of obstacles when planning your trip. ]
In good weather, with average stream conditions, Kirby’s Mill can be reached from the park area in about an hour. One-way downstream trips are an easy way to enjoy an outing on the water. The return trip, against the current, takes about an hour and a half. A round trip, starting at Kirby’s Mill or at the park, makes a pleasant half-day outing. When planning an outing, paddlers must take into account their own abilities and weather forecasts. Thunderstorms and heavy rains can cause strong currents and dangerous stream conditions that make trips inadvisable. Enjoy the journey.
Special thanks to Kevin Sparkman and Gwen Sparkman for this website.