Chambers Lake at Hibernia County Park

About the Lake

Chambers Lake is a 90-acre water supply reservoir and regional flood control facility of the Chester County Water Resources Authority.

In 1994, the lake was formed by the construction of Hibernia Dam on Birch Run to provide a supplemental source of local drinking water, and needed flood control for the Brandywine Creek watershed. The lake also offers excellent recreational opportunities, especially fishing, boating, hiking and bird watching.

In September 1996, the lake was officially dedicated Chambers Lake, in memory of J. Franklin Chambers, the first superintendent of Hibernia County Park.
Chambers Lake.jpg

Lake Facts

  • Size of Lake: 94 acres
  • Deepest Area: 48 feet
  • Height of Dam: 64.5 feet
  • Length of Dam: 700 feet
  • Floodwater Storage Capacity: 257 million gallons
  • Water Supply Storage Capacity: 382 million gallons
Chambers at Dusk.jpg

Fishing & Boating

Notice: as of November 1st, life jackets are required while underway or at anchor on boats less than 16 feet in length or any canoe or kayak. Visit the Fish and Boat Commission website for more information.

Fishing is permitted 24 hours a day. The lake is stocked with warm water species, including Panfish, Channel Catfish, Chain Pickerel, and Smallmouth and Largemouth Bass. Chambers is one of only three Pennsylvania lakes that is a Panfish Enhancement Area, which regulates number, quality and size of panfish through minimum length limits. It is also one of a select few in the Big Bass Program. Therefore, the lake is closed to bass fishing from late April to early June.

A public fishing pier is open on the lake’s north side and may be accessed from the Lake Trail. Other shoreline fishing is permitted, but is prohibited from the dam breast itself. There is a public parking lot and boat ramp off Wagontown Road. After park hours, parking is permitted for fishing only.

No gasoline powered boats or engines are permitted to be operated on the lake; only electric-powered or self-propelled boats are allowed. All watercraft must be registered with the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission. Swimming and sailing are prohibited.

Other fishing resources at Chester County parks
A fishing boat on Chambers Lake during a sunset

Public Boating Information

1. All motorized boats must have a current Pennsylvania boat registration or valid out-of-state registration. Canoes, kayaks, and any other non-motorized boats must display a current launch permit obtained either through the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) or a Pennsylvania State Park. For registration information, call the PFBC at 866-262-8734.

2. PFBC boat registration application
Applications can also be obtained at:

  • Commission offices
  • Most auto tag dealers
  • Many state park offices
Chambers Lake Access.jpg
3. Registration fees*

  • $ 18 Unpowered boats
  • $ 26 Boats under 16 feet long
  • $ 39 Boats 16 feet and less than 20 feet long
  • $ 52 Boats longer than 20 feet
 * Fees valid for a 2 year period, expiring March 31st of second year. Information current as of August, 2014.
View of Chambers Lake.jpg
 4. To obtain a boat registration, you need to complete Form REV-336. Proof of ownership must be provided in the form of a title from Pennsylvania or another state, or the manufacturer’s certificate of origin and a copy of the bill of sale.

5. Every boat must have a sound-producing device (whistle, horn, etc.), and each occupant must have one wearable personal flotation device (PFD). Throwable seats do not count as flotation devices. Children 12 years and younger must wear a PFD at all times.

6. Boating is permitted 24 hours a day for fishing purposes. Access is provided on the south side of Chambers Lake along Wagontown Road.

Please visit for updates.
Lake Sunset.jpg
Around the Lake
Wildlife Watching and Nature Study
Bald eagles and osprey are regular visitors, while migratory waterfowl and belted kingfishers are common. The wetlands have attracted egrets, sandpipers, herons, turtles, frogs and an assortment of aquatic insects. The northern end of Chambers Lake and surrounding park area is designated part of a migratory bird sanctuary. It is closed to boating and foot traffic from April 1 to mid-June.

The .67-mile Lake Trail winds from the lawn of Hibernia Mansion to the lake and beyond to public campgrounds. With a slope not exceeding 5%, it is wheelchair accessible. The trail includes two overlooks, an accessible fishing area and trailside benches. no mountain bikes or horses are permitted. Dogs are permitted on a leash.
An aerial view of Chambers Lake
Walking, fishing, biking and horseback riding on the dam is not permitted.

Protecting Lake Communities
  • Keep your dog on a leash. Pick up after your pet
  • At home, use fertilizers sparingly, if at all
  • Switch to a phosphate-free dishwasher detergent