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New Tour Series! Falling Waters of the Schuylkill: Flat Rock Dam, Black Rock Dam, Fairmount Dam, and their Environs

BlackRock_FishLadder_©Sorlien_MedJoin us for one or both of these walking tours of fascinating Schuylkill River natural and historic sites, including the Flat Rock Dam, Black Rock Dam and Fairmount Dam. Please click here for more information and to purchase tickets:

Learn about the connection of these dams with the urban water cycle locally, and with the City of Philadelphia’s landmark water system. See firsthand the thriving ecology of Pennsylvania’s River of the Year for 2014, as we look for birds, turtles and fish. Both dams have fishways (fish ladders) that have enabled the return of the shad every spring.

We go out early in the day for better birding and photography opportunities, rain or shine – waterfalls are more exciting if it has been raining! Bring binoculars if you have them, and wear walking shoes. We will do about a mile of easy hiking in each location. After we end our session at 11:00, on your own you can enjoy coffee, lunch, or other attractions on nearby Main Streets and Parkways, for a complete outing.

Minimum 6 attendees to hold a tour. Fees for cancelled tours will be refunded.

Your guide is Environmental Educator, urban planner, photographer and (intermediate) birder Sandy Sorlien, from the Fairmount Water Works.

Here’s what one of our attendees said about the first tour:
“The recent tour of Flat Rock Dam, Schuylkill canal remains, and sluice house was a great chance for me to learn about the industrial and natural history of the area. Our guide, Sandy, has a keen eye for wildlife and I got to see and learn about species of birds and turtles along the river that I had never taken notice of before. I’ve read quite a bit about canals and the Schuylkill’s industrial development, but I was pleased to learn even more than I already knew about the history of water technology and waterways in our region.”
– Dan Rifkin, Lancaster PA

(TOUR ONE: was held on Saturday April 12.)

TOUR TWO: Black Rock Dam and Nature Sanctuary, Phoenixville
Saturday April 19, 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM

TOUR THREE: Fairmount Dam and Water Works, Schuylkill Banks, Philadelphia
Saturday May 10, 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM