The Delaware River is the longest river without dams east of the Mississippi!
The entire river serves as a border between states. In other words, when you stand on one of the benches, you are always looking at another state.
The immense river supports world-class trout fishing and river recreation. Economically, millions of people rely on the river to provide them with clean drinking water.
Moreover, a wealth of wildlife also depends on the river for living. The working river is proud to be included in the National Wild and Scenic River system.
How long is the Delaware River? Read on to find out!
How long is the Delaware River?
The Delaware River is 330 miles long. Meanwhile, it is only a little bit longer than the Hudson River, which is 315 miles long. The river serves as a major river on the Atlantic coast of the United States.
Amazingly, the entire drainage area covers over 13,000 square miles. It is one of 19 “Great Waters” recognized by the United States Great Waters Coalition.
In addition, although the river is large, it is not the largest in the area. Delaware is shorter than the Potomac (405 miles) and the Susquehanna Rivers (444 miles).
Where Does the Delaware River Begin?
The Delaware River begins in New York’s Catskill Mountains. The river has 2 different branches.
Near Mount, Jefferson is where the western branch of the river begins. In addition, the eastern branch of the river also begins near Roxbury, located at Grand Gorge.
Further on, the western and eastern branches of the river converge at Hancock, New York. From there they flow as 1 river into the Delaware Bay.
Because of this, the river flows through 5 states. The states include Pennsylvania, New York, Maryland, New Jersey, and Delaware. Pennsylvania is especially popular for its trout and bass fishing opportunities.
Where does the Delaware River end?
The Delaware River ends when it enters the Atlantic Ocean. The river flows into the Atlantic Ocean at Cape May in New Jersey. It also enters Cape Henlopen in Delaware.
How Deep is the Delaware River?
The Delaware River is 113 ft deep in some parts. The deepest part of the river occurs at Big Eddy in Narrowsburg, New York. The depth of the river varies from location to location.
Regularly, the river has a depth of 4-6 feet along the shorelines. However, there is a deep drop off as you move away from the coast. Farther out, the river reaches depths of 30 to 40 ft and beyond.
The main transportation port for the Delaware River is a 103 mile stretch. The route runs from Philadelphia and Camden to Delaware Bay. Fun fact; the great bay of delaware is not the largest bay in the world.
The main transport port used to be part of a decades-long deepening project. The project worked to change the depth of the river from 40 ft to 45 ft. When the project came to an end in 2018, the aim of the project was to be able to help improve the freight shipping route.
Why is the Delaware River so famous?
Delaware is rich in lakes, rivers and estuaries. What makes the Delaware River so famous?
The river is famous because George Washington crossed it on December 25, 1776. As General of the Continental Army, George Washington bravely led troops across the ice-filled river.
Ahead, the trip was to assist in an attack against Hessian troops near Trenton. The crossing took place at Micani’s Ferry in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. The crossing of Delaware cemented Washington’s role as primary leader. Equally importantly, the river has also helped shape the history of the states through which it flows.
Major Tributaries of Delaware
The Delaware River has more than 200 tributaries and creeks. There are approximately 14,000 miles of creeks and streams in the river’s basin.
Each state has its major tributaries. The major tributaries in New York are the Neversink Mongaup Rivers and Callicon Creek.
The Lackawaxen, Schuylkill, and Lehigh rivers feed Delaware in Pennsylvania. Entering New Jersey, the major tributaries are the Cooper and Maurice Rivers, along with the Rancocas and Musconetcong Creek. The watersheds, streams, creeks, and rivers include Maurice River, Oldmans Creek, Salem River, and Valley Creek, just to name a few.
Where Is Delaware River Tidal?
The Delaware River is tidal from Trenton to Delaware Bay. From Trenton, New Jersey, to New York, the river is not tidal. The 200-mile stretch of non-tidal waters is known for being exceptionally clean and of high quality.
Alternatively, the tidal portion of the river is also known as the Delaware Estuary. It is where the fresh water of the river begins to mix with the salt water of the ocean. The tidal change is about 6 ft in Delaware Bay. In Trenton, New Jersey, the tide changes about 10 ft.
Where Does the Delaware River Break?
The Delaware River is brackish in Wilmington, Delaware. In other words, the entire tidal portion of the river is estuarine.
Brackish water is a mixture of salt and fresh water that comes together. The salt content fluctuates. That’s why you find salt water in Delaware Bay. Alternatively, it is mainly freshwater in Trenton, New Jersey.
Intriguing Facts in Delaware Bay
The Delaware Bay rises in the Delaware River, one of the most vital saltwater estuaries in the United States. The estuary covers an area of approximately 782 square miles.
The state of Delaware is bordered to the south by the lower part of Delaware Bay and to the north by New Jersey. In addition, the bay opens up quite a bit before joining the Atlantic Ocean.
Known as a coastal stronghold, Delaware Bay can help protect residents from rising sea levels. In the next century, scientists think sea levels could rise from 1 to 6 ft!
Rising water can completely change the landscape of existing homes and cities. As a result, residents of coastal provinces will rely on coastal strongholds to keep the water away.
Wadden and salt marshes
The shores of the bay consist mainly of mud flats and salt marshes. Along with the Delaware River, Delaware Bay is fed by numerous streams and rivers. The Christina River and the St. Jones River make up the bay from the Delaware side.
Popular place for migratory birds
Delaware Bay is a popular spot for migratory birds. As many as 216,000 migratory birds will visit the bay in one day. The most common varieties are the Semipalmated Sandpiper, Red Knot, Sanderlings and Ruddy Turnstones.