Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park | NOLANDS FERRY BOAT RAMP

Nolands Ferry Boat Ramp

Nolands Ferry Boat Ramp


Nolands Ferry Boat Ramp is located at Mile 44.6 on the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal towpath. See the Boat Ramps web page for an interactive location map.

NOTE: Sections of the towpath, locks and other historical structures, trails, campgrounds, picnic areas, boat ramps, and visitor centers are constantly being closed due to damage and/or repair. When planning an adventure within Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park, make sure that areas you plan to visit are open by checking the National Park Service’s official Current Park Conditions web page.


A ferry at this location began operating in 1742, but it takes its name from Philip Noland, who was the operator starting in 1754. By the time Civil War rolled around, the ferry saw little business, losing much of its traffic to the bridges built over the Potomac near Washington, D. C. The location of the boat ramp is in the exact location as the original ferry dock.

The boat ramp at Nolands Ferry is rather steep, but it does launch into a calm section of the Potomac River. While there is no parking at the ramp, kayakers and canoeists without a trailer on their vehicle can park at the Nolands Ferry Picnic Area just up the road, and those with trailers can park in a dirt lot on New Design Road. You pass both of these parking areas on the way to the boat ramp.

Like all boat ramps within Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park, there is no usage fee.

Downstream view of the Potomac from the Nolands Ferry Boat Ramp

Downstream view of the Potomac from the Nolands Ferry Boat Ramp

Upstream view of the Potomac from the Nolands Ferry Boat Ramp

Upstream view of the Potomac from the Nolands Ferry Boat Ramp

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Last updated on April 24, 2020
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