May 23, 2024

Great Shiplock/Chapel Island Park

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2803 Dock Street

United States

Chapel Island was named for the early Episcopal chapel located there and active prior to the 1741 founding of St. John’s Episcopal Church in Church Hill. Here you’ll find places to fish in the tidal James for species such as shad, white perch, rockfish, smallmouth bass, herring, and several types of catfish. There is also a half-mile of winding, wide and flat single-track for hikers and bikers, an accessible boat ramp and a non-motorized boat launch.

In addition, the central gravel path continues west along the island through the retention basin owned by the DPU to the 14th Street boat take-out. The parkland also includes the former Trigg Shipyard, which was built in 1898 and went out of business in 1903. Interpretive signage aids visitors’ understanding of these unique spots and their place in Richmond history.

The great lock connected the James River with the Richmond Dock, completing the James River and Kanawha Canal system that bypassed seven miles of falls and continued 197 miles through Virginia’s western mountain ranges. This park is the lowest of the historic Kanawha Canal locks with an interpretive display.

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