Did you know the Susquehanna River has now been designated by the National Park Service as a part of the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail, becoming the first nationally designated water trail in the country.  We offer a variety of guided paddle tours on the Susquehanna, all of which contain some part of Early American history revolving around the Native Americans and the trade and transportation routes for Indian tribes who lived here before the English arrived in the early 1600’s.  Spend a day discovering something unique about the Susquehanna River and area streams.  Our experienced guides will not only lead you safely through your tour but also give you interesting information about the natural features, cultural or historical highlights of the area.  On several of our tours, we invite various experts along to add to your experience.  Our Paddle Day Tours feature a snack or full lunch that you will take along in your kayaks. 

Individual Tour pricing is below.  Rental Kayaks for Paddle Day Tours – $45/Single Kayak; $50/Double Kayak

Wrightsville via the Conejohela Flats Guided Paddle Tour
Saturday, June 29, 2019, 11:00am-3:30pm

Our put-in point on this guided paddle tour is the Susquehanna River at John Wright.  Follow the path of the Susquehanna Canal and then experience several different kinds of paddling waters.  Pick your way through the rocks of an old canal dam and Native American fish traps, skirt some river islands, and then experience the tranquil waters of the Conejohela Flats.  This area is home to many migratory birds as well as resident osprey and bald eagles.  Then cross the river and end up at Shank's Mare.  Our experienced guides will share highlights of these paddling points, and for a breather you'll enjoy a packed picnic lunch on the Flats. Rental kayaks are available at an additional cost.

Fee includes Shuttle, Tour, Guide & Lunch – $66/Person

Lock 15 Paddle Tour
Sunday July 14 or Monday September 9, 2019  - 10:30am-3:30pm

The rock formations in this area of the river are still a mystery to geologists, and this part of the Susquehanna is unlike any of the other areas we paddle.  It is truly one of our favorite destinations on the Susquehanna.  As you meander through the unique formations, you may stop to take a dip, use your camera to capture the awesome landscape, and enjoy a picnic lunch provided for your tour.

Fee includes Shuttle, Tour & Lunch-$66/Person

Native American Rock Art Paddle Tour
Saturdays July 27, August 17, and September 21, 2019 - 10:00am-4:00pm

The rocks containing Native American Art are one of the most unique sites on the Lower Susquehanna.  Accompanied by expert Paul Nevin, we’ll paddle to these rocks located on Lake Aldred of the Susquehanna and view the Native American “petroglyphs” that tell the story of people who have populated the river hundreds or even thousands of years ago.  Spend the day on the rocks, hear the stories of these fascinating landmarks, and enjoy a picnic lunch with some very scenic paddling.

Fee-including shuttle, guides & lunch - $73/Person

Fall Flyway Guided Paddle Tour

Saturday, October 5, 2019, 11:00am-2:00pm
Explore the Conejohela Flats located just across the Susquehanna from Shank's Mare. This area is designated an Audubon Important Bird Area as well as a part of the Atlantic Migratory Bird Flyway.  You are sure to see resident bald eagles, heron and osprey, but watch out for migratory waterfowl that may be visiting the area.  This is about a 5-mile paddle tour.  You can bring your own kayaks, or you can rent them at Shank's Mare at an additional cost.  Following your paddle tour, you'll head to Shank's Mare's The Rookery for a delicious and hearty hot lunch.  What a great way to enjoy an Autumn day on the river.
Fee - includes guides and lunch - $40/Person
Kayak Rental if Needed - $29/Single Kayak, $39/Double Kayak.  Reservations required.

Unwind Paddle Tour & Music on the River Series

This program will be offered each night during the summer when we have live music scheduled on our porch.  Shank’s Mare guides will lead you on a leisurely paddle tour along the shoreline suitable for those who have never kayaked before, or anyone who wants to enjoy a relaxing paddle.  The fee will include your kayak rental, a one hour guided paddle tour, and of course, the live music on the porch at Shank’s Mare.  On-site food service is available from a unique food truck scheduled for each Friday Nite Unwind.  What a great way to spend a summer evening at the river!  Bring chairs, blankets, etc. and BYOB welcome.  Save $10 on the fee if you have your own kayak.  Pre-registration is required for this program

Friday, June 12, 2020 -  6-9pm - The J. C. Fisher Band & The Taco Bus
Friday, June 26, 2020 - 6-9pm - Boothill Getaway & Kilted Griller Food Truck
Friday, July 10, 2020 -  6-9pm - Plain Jane & The Taco Bus
Friday, July 24, 2020 - 6-9pm - Indian Summer Jars & Agin' Cajun Food Truck
Friday, August 14, 2020 -  6-9pm - Crossfire 3 & The Taco Bus
Friday, August 28, 2020 - 6-9pm - Sean Hetrick and The Leftovers

Tour Fee – including guided tour, kayak rental, & live music - $29/Person 
$10 off if you have your own kayak.  Reservations Required.

Shank's Mare can offer private guided paddle tours to various sections of the Susquehanna on request.  If you have a group, give us a call at 717-252-1616 and we can discuss destinations and details.

Paddle & Dine Programs
Here's a nice alternative to dinner and a movie.  Enjoy a guided paddle on the river followed by a delicious dinner in The Rookery banquet room, or riverside on our porch or lawn.  Grab some friends and reserve a table or come on your own.

Summer's Eve Paddle & Dine

Friday June 19, 2020 - 6:00pm

Here’s a great way to celebrate the arrival of summer. Travel the beautiful Susquehanna River on a guided paddle followed by dinner in The Rookery featuring a multi-course meal with freshly prepared food. Make reservations for yourself or a whole table of friends. Paddle is suitable for beginners. BYOB welcome.

Fee -includes guided paddle tour, kayak, paddle, lifevest and meal - $60/Person

Deduct $15 if you have your own equipment.

Mid-Summer’s Eve Paddle & Dine

Friday, July 17, 2020, 6:00-9:00pm

Enjoy a beautiful evening paddling the Susquehanna River at dusk.  This peaceful time of day on the water begins your evening.  Once your tour is done, head to Shank’s Mare’s The Rookery for a multi-course summer’s dinner menu.  This is a really great time to spend with friends or family so reserve a whole table…or come on your own.Paddle is suitable for beginners and BYOB with dinner is welcome.

Fee-includes guided paddle tour, kayak, paddle, lifevest and meal - $60/Person

Deduct $15 if you have your own equipment.

Dog Days of Summer Paddle & Dine

Friday, August 7, 2020, 6:00-9:00pm

Its peak summer on the river which brings calm conditions and warm, balmy evenings. Enjoy a guided paddle tour on the Susquehanna at Shank’s Mare followed by a delicious multi-course meal in The Rookery.  Your spectacular view of the river is the perfect way to spend a warm summer evening.  Tour is suitable for beginners.  BYOB welcome.

Fee-includes guided paddle, kayak, paddle, lifevest and meal - $60/Person

Deduct $15 if you have your own equipment.

Paddle Cruise & Crackin’ Crabs on the River

Saturday, August 15, 2020, 5:00-9:00pm

What could be more about summer than paddling the river and cracking some crabs! Join us for a guided, leisurely evening paddle. Then relax on Shank’s Mare’s lawn and crack some crabs plus enjoy tasty summer dishes (plenty filling for those who don’t eat crabs). BYOB is welcome. Price includes the guided paddle, gear, and summer dishes. Let us know with your reservation how many crabs you want (lots of ½ dz.). We will get them freshly steamed and you pay market price.  Let’s get paddlin’ and crackin’!

Fee-includes guided paddle, kayak, paddle, lifevest & summer dishes- $52/Person

Deduct $15 if you have your own equipment.

Harvest Moon Paddle & Dine

Saturday, September 5, 2020, 5:00-9:00pm

Paddle the river as dusk settles and the Harvest Moon begins to rise above the Susquehanna.  Then head to Shanks’ Mare’s front porch for a delicious multi-course meal featuring autumn food selections as the moon river marks its path on the water.  It’s a great time of the year to enjoy the river and the harvest bounty of our local farms.  Paddle tour is leisurely, and BYOB with dinner is welcome.

Fee-includes guided paddle, kayak, paddle, lifevest and meal - $60/Ea.

Deduct $15 if you have your own equipment.

Paddle & Pizza with Shank's Mare & The John Wright Restaurant

Wednesdays - June 24, July 15 or 29, August 5 or 19, 2020 - 6:00-9:00 pm
hank's Mare is teaming up with our friends at The John Wright Restaurant.  Enjoy a guided kayak tour on the Susquehanna River at the Veterans Memorial Bridge. Explore the footprint of the old Susquehanna Canal and the remains of the famous bridge burned during the Civil War.  Then head to the patio at John Wright for their delicious brick oven pizza.  Register for the tour on our website.  Make your patio reservations directly with The John Wright Restaurant.  Please note that this tour meets and leaves from the boat launch at John Wright in Wrightsville.
Fee - includes guided paddle tour, kayak, paddle, and lifevest - $45/Person.  
Deduct $15 if you have your own kayak.


Chincoteague VA Paddling Trip

Fri. Oct. 5 thru Mon. Oct. 8, 2018 (Columbus Day Weekend)

Each year we explore some area of the Chesapeake Bay.  This Fall's destination is Chincoteague Island, Virginia and the waters between Chincoteague and Assateague National Seashore.  This trip offers great paddling with a choice of destinations depending on wind conditions.  In addition to paddling, there is great biking and hiking on Assateague as well as visits to the nature center and beach.

Lodging and meals are provided .  Accommodations are comfortable vacation home that we use as a home base. Rental kayaks are available although please note that this is NOT a beginner trip. Transportation to and from our destination is your responsibility. Shank’s Mare provides experienced trip leaders who reserve the right to determine participant’s qualifications for any trip. Our staff is available to assist with any trip planning questions.   


Including lodging and meals – $429/person.  Call 717-252-1616 for a trip sheet and full details.


A 50% non-refundable deposit is required for reservations. Entire trip fee is due 30 days prior to departure. Refunds will be made only if your vacated spot is filled and the trip is full.

Pine Island, Florida Paddling Trip

Week #1 – January 31-February 6, 2019

Pine Island, Florida is a hidden gem located in the beautiful waters off Ft. Myers, FL.  This mangrove island, composed mostly of palm tree nurseries, has avoided the high rise development of many areas in southwest Florida.  You will paddle the bays, backwaters, and shorelines of the Great Calusa Blueway paddling trail, launch right from our own dock nestled in the mangroves.

Accommodations are a very comfortable waterfront home with a beautiful view of the mangroves. Greet dolphin and manatees as they visit on a regular basis. Launch kayaks and SUP’s right from our own dock. Bike 17 miles of bicycle trail accessible from the house. It’s a great way to escape the PA Winter!  Our itinerary will be very relaxed with plenty of time to paddle, bike, bird, fish and explore.  Paddle as often or as little as you would like…your relaxation is key to this special trip.

Meals including breakfast, lunch, hors d’oeuvres and dinner are provided.  Transportation to and from Pine Island is your responsibility.  Very reasonable air fares are available to the SW Florida International Airport (Ft. Myers), and there is a shuttle service from the airport to the island and our accommodations.  If you are flying, we can arrange to have equipment including kayaking gear and stand-up paddleboards for you to use.  If you choose to drive, it is a reasonable drive and you can add a variety of East Coast stops to explore on your way down or back.


Fee including accommodations and meals as described above…………………………………….$2600/Couple    

Price is based on double occupancy.  No Adventure Club applies to this program.  If you are driving and bringing your own equipment, there is plenty of storage at the house.  If you are flying, we can provide equipment for you to use during your stay, and we can provide the name of the shuttle service from the airport to the house on Pine Island.


1/3 deposit required for reservation; 1/3 payment due 11/25/18; 1/3 payment due 1/1/19.

In an effort to keep trip cost reasonable, please make your payments by check payable to “Shank’s Mare”.

Cancellations made prior to 12/15/18 are refundable.  Any cancellations made after 12/15/18 are not refundable, unless the vacant spots are filled prior to the trip.