Agency Spotlight: Ralph Stover State Park
Tohickon Creek flows through the 45-acre Ralph Stover State Park in Bucks County, making a scenic picnic area. The nearby High Rocks section of the park is a lovely overlook of the Tohickon Creek.
Early inhabitants of the area, the Lenni Lenape, named the creek "To-Hick-Hanne" meaning "Deer-Bone-Creek," leading to the modern name Tohickon Creek.
Early industry depended on Tohickon Creek. Ralph Stover State Park marks the site of a late 18th century water-powered grist mill. The park takes its name from Ralph Stover who owned and operated the mill. Remnants of the mill, and the millrace, which diverted the water from above the dam to power the mill, are still visible.
In 1931, the Stover heirs gave this property to the Commonwealth for use as a state park. Recreational facilities were first opened in 1935 after development by the Federal Works Progress Administration (WPA).
The property known as the "High Rocks" was added through the donation of the late James A. Michener, a noted author.
This area is popular for its spectacular views and geological features and is used extensively as a rock-climbing site. The 200-foot sheer rock face of this cliff offers a unique challenge to the experienced climber.
The "High Rocks" section of the park features an outstanding view of a horseshoe bend in Tohickon Creek and the surrounding forest.
For hikers, the easy walking trails pass through many habitats and pass near the millrace.
As for the creek, warm-water species found in Tohickon Creek include smallmouth bass, sunfish, carp and catfish. The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission stocks trout, a cold-water fish.
When high water conditions exist, Tohickon Creek offers a challenging course for closed-deck canoes and kayaks. Whitewater craft may be launched in the park. Please do not block parking areas and roadways.
At the end of March and the beginning of November, there are planned whitewater releases from Lake Nockamixon. For information, call Delaware Canal State Park at 610-982-5560.
The creek contains several drop-offs, especially downstream of the High Rocks cliffs. Paddlers should never boat alone. The Tohickon Creek, with its drop-offs, obstructions and strainers can be very dangerous.
Ralph Stover State Park participates in a carry-in/carry-out trash disposal program for small parks. There are no trash collection or recycling facilities. Visitors are asked to limit the amount of disposable items brought to the park and to take all trash, garbage, and recyclables home with them.
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