Milton State Park is an 82-acre island on the West Branch Susquehanna River, between the boroughs of Milton and West Milton. The northern half of the park has day use facilities and the southern half remains in a wooded state for hiking and nature study.
The park is open from dawn to dusk, year-round.
(Note: Many places fill to capacity on busy, nice weather days, especially holiday weekends. Please call ahead or visit the official website to get the most up-to-date information before visiting.)
There are no fees associated with Milton State Park.
Picnicking: There are picnic tables, drinking water, charcoal grills and restrooms.
Recreation Fields: Soccer fields are popular attractions for local clubs and the public.
Boating: unlimited hp motors permitted. A boat launch is on the east side of the island. River elevations vary with the seasons and generally are not deep enough for large watercraft.
Complete information on boating rules and regulations in Pennsylvania is available from the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission Web site.
Fishing: The Susquehanna River has warm water and cold water fishing. Common species are smallmouth bass, panfish and catfish. Complete information on fishing rules and regulations in Pennsylvania is available from the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission Web site.
Hiking: 3.5 miles of trails explore the riverine habitats of the south side of the river island.
In 1762, Marcus Huling Jr. claimed the big island, which eventually came to be called Montgomery Island. Within a decade, he planted an apple orchard. At this time, this part of the state was claimed by Pennsylvania and Connecticut.
Eventually the land came to be controlled by the Straub Brothers, who in 1824 built a dam across part of the river and erected a sawmill and gristmill. The brothers won the contract to build a bridge across the river between the three islands.
The mills eventually became unprofitable and the island was only used as farmland. Floods continually washed away parts of the bridge, which were rebuilt. By the early 1900s, farming ceased and there were now two islands, one of the smaller islands having joined the big island, making it even larger.
The island was subdivided to many owners and part became athletic fields. The Milton Rotary Club worked to consolidate the deeds to one title for Milton Borough, who then transferred the title to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in 1966.
The floodwaters of Hurricane Agnes completely covered the island in 1972. Federal relief money helped rebuild the facilities. In 1987, PA 624 was relocated across the island, providing a new boat launch and transferring the final piece of property to state park control.