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Itinerary:

Stopping for a Drink on Morgan Creek

Morgnec Road Public Landing places paddlers in the lower stretches of Morgan Creek. Visitors looking for a protected route of easy paddling can opt to head upstream. The creek narrows to a trickle after 4.5 miles, but the journey offers peaceful scenery that includes farmland, marshes, and forested shorelines. In the 18th century, a brew pub was located just beyond where the creek narrows. Along with the flour that was shipped along Morgan Creek, destined to ports on the Chester and the Chesapeake Bay, this brew pub also shipped ale to Chestertown and beyond.

Morgnec’s location on lower Morgan Creek draws fisherman seeking catfish, perch, and largemouth bass to the area around this launch site. Paddlers looking to adventure beyond the creek can paddle to the Chester River about 1 mile away, on to Chestertown for another 2.5 miles downstream, or upstream toward Crumpton about 6.5 miles away. 

Things to Know

The landing is a great point from which to access two very different kinds of paddles. For a more leisurely option, head upstream for about 4.5 miles past farmland, marshes, and forests before the creek narrows considerably. In the other direction, it is 1 mile to the mouth of Morgan Creek where it meets the Chester River. From there it is 2.5 miles downstream to Chestertown, or 6.5 miles upstream to Crumpton. Both of these paddles are less protected than staying in Morgan Creek, as the Chester River is more exposed to wind. 

Navigational Hazards

This is a fairly protected stretch of water for paddling, though tidal currents can be moderate to strong. Be aware of bends and curves, as these can be subject to stronger tides. This area is best paddled at higher tides if possible. If heading to Chestertown, waters of the Chester River can be exposed to southerly winds.

Water Safety

Remember: safe use of rivers and any designated trails, at any time, is your responsibility! Water trail maps are for informational and interpretive purposes only and are not meant for navigational purposes, nor do they take into account level of skills or ability required to navigate rivers. The National Park Service, Chesapeake Conservancy and/or the individual trail associations assume no responsibility or liability for any injury or loss resulting directly or indirectly from the use of water trails, maps or other printed or web-based materials. Learn more about water safety.

Marine Forecast

We STRONGLY suggested that you review the marine forecast ahead of heading out for a paddling trip. To review the forecast for this paddle trip, visit:

Emergency Information

Launch site address:
Morgnec Road
Chestertown, MD 21620

Nearest hospitals:
UM Shore Medical Center at Chestertown
100 Brown St
Chestertown, MD 21620
(410) 778-3300

Chester River Hospital Center
6602 Church Hill Rd #300
Chestertown, MD 21620
(410) 778-3300

Parking & Shuttles

Ample side of the road parking for up to 20 vehicles, gravel, 5 am -10 pm

Restrooms

No

Equipment

  • ALWAYS wear a properly secured personal flotation device (PFD) when participating in paddlesport activities. Make sure that your PFD has a readily accessible safety whistle.
  • Bring a paddle float and water pump for self rescue.
  • A spray skirt is recommended for cold/foul weather.
  • Wear appropriate protective clothing that shields you from the sun (sunglasses, sunblock, hat, and a long-sleeved shirt that can get wet) and is safe to swim in. Water shoes with closed toes will protect you from abrasive hazards at launch areas that can cut your feet.
  • Bring water in bottles than can be secured to your craft. Bring more water than you think you’ll need and drink regularly throughout your journey.

Outfitters

Camping & Amenities

This launch site has a gravel ramp that is best for launching canoes and kayaks.  Smaller vessels (<14') such as john boats or skiffs can be launched at high tide.

There are no camping amenities at this site.

Trail History

Before the Civil War, the farmlands of Kent and Queen Anne’s Counties began to be known for their bounty of corn, wheat, and fruit. The introduction of the railroads to these areas opened them up for shipping to other counties in Maryland and beyond, which bolstered the economy of these places greatly. This growth was also accelerated by technological improvements in farm machinery. Shipbuilders in the 18th century enhanced trade by building small boats for local transportation, in addition to larger-masted vessels for trade internationally. Eventually the great steamboats of the early 20th century allowed for increased trade and tourism, bringing products and people to and from the eastern shore. Though the eastern shore is largely characterized by wide open spaces and vast farmlands, advancements and innovations in transportation have allowed for the spread of products, a boost to the economy, and the movement of people to these less-habited shores. 

Weather

Main image: Chris Cerino/ Sultana Education Foundation