By Captain Stephen Prosser
There are days on the water at Raystown Lake that I recall a scene in the movie, “The Perfect Storm”. Captain Billy Tyne is talking to another boat captain, Christine. It goes like this.
“The fog’s just lifting. Throw off your bow line; throw off your stern. You head out to South channel, past Rocky Neck, Ten Pound Island. Past Niles Pond where I skated as a kid. Blow your air-horn and throw a wave to the lighthouse keeper’s kid on Thatcher Island. Then the birds show up: black backs, herring gulls, big dump ducks. The sun hits ya – head North. Open up to 12 – steamin’ now. The guys are busy; you’re in charge. Ya know what? You’re a swordboat captain! Is there anything better in the world?”
Some of you know what I am talking about as Raystown Lake has 118 miles of shoreline and is 28 miles long. Maybe you put in at the southern end where the lake is more like a lazy river winding through the mountains or James Creek where you can go back to the Brumbaugh Homestead and party cove. We all have our favorite spots like Pee Wee Island or a cove that you and the family always seems to end up at on your weekend adventures. I have mine but would never tell you about them, you have to find your own.
Raystown has about 10,000 acres of water and there is room for you to discover what we all know about this special place, located only one day’s drive from one third of the entire population of the United States. Your vacation or get-a-way is waiting to happen with support from Seven Points Marina, voted as the best marina in the country on the northern end and Lake Raystown Resort on the southern end. The Corps of Engineers at Raystown Lake manages seven (7) boat launches along the length of the 28-mile lake. They are, from the northernmost end to the southernmost end:Snyder’s Run, Seven Points, Aitch, James Creek,Tatman Run, Shy Beaver and Weaver Falls. Check out the Corps of Engineers web site to learn more and to get directions.
Everybody seems to write about their vacation spot as being special, I suppose, and claim it only rains at night and everyone is always happy and the food explodes in your mouth with flavor. Ok, I get it, everyone wants you to visit.
All I know is that there are times when I throw out the bow and the stern line and head out past the wave break. Then comes the public beach and I blast the air horn at the kids playing in the water. We head north toward the dam, push it up to 22 and we’re throwing a wake now. The sun hits the water and it seems to come alive, dancing in front of us to the sound of the radio playing softly in the background. We pass jet ski’s and cruisers, and everyone seems to be enjoying the day. Water people always seem to be at their best when they are on the water again. Way back in the no wake zones people either tie up together with friends or stay by themselves. There is plenty of room for everyone.I ask the mate for another beverage and our guests are busy enjoying their first glimpse of the Lake aboard the tour boat, The Princess. Ya know what? I’m a tour boat captain on Raystown Lake. Is there anything better in the world?
About the author: For the past five years Steve has been the Captain of the tour boat, The Princess that docks at Seven Points Marina. He is a United States Coast Guard licensed captain, 100 tons. Although he has a BA in religious studies, along with a masters degree in Education and another masters degree in Business, water is his first love.