Rules Summary:

  • Only SCRC members, their guests, or participants in SCRC clinics are permitted to use SCRC boats and equipment.
  • Members must be in good standing (i.e., annual membership dues paid) before using SCRC equipment and/or racking private boats.
  • All members are required to maintain Club equipment in clean and functioning condition with each use. Changes in boat condition, necessary repairs, etc. must be communicated to Boat Captain using the iCrew Damage Report.
  • Private boats and oars may be used only with the owner’s permission.
  • Members shall use iCrew to reserve an SCRC boat.
  • Members shall use iCrewto indicate when an SCRC or private boat is launched and returned.
  • No SCRC equipment may leave winter storage areas without the permission of the Boat Captain, except on the official Spring Boat move day.
  • Members must reserve SCRC boats for regattas in iCrew. 
  • Members must get approval from the Boat Captain to remove SCRC boats from the site for any non-regatta use.
  • All SCRC members and guests shall respect the public nature of the boat rack area and launch site at all times. This includes being mindful of noise, particularly in the early morning.
  • Consider the site “carry in, carry out.” Check launch area for water bottles and clothes after rowing. When you leave the site, take all clothing, water bottles, and trash with you. Do not leave trash on the site.
  • Maintain a safe driving speed when approaching the boat site (not to exceed posted speed).
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  • SCRC boats and equipment shall take priority over private boats and equipment in both summer and winter storage.
  • SCRC members will be given every consideration for private boat winter and summer storage, subject to change in response to available storage sites, facility fees, and member needs.
  • Members will be notified of change in storage plans and/or fees, no less than one month prior to planned change.
  • All private boats and equipment must be removed from the site for winter storage.
  • All private boats and equipment allocated for winter storage shall be managed and handled by owners.
  • SCRC takes no responsibility for private boats that are in winter or summer storage. SCRC recommends that all private boat owners secure insurance for their equipment.
  • A private boat shall be considered abandoned and SCRC property if membership fees are delinquent for six months, if the private boat has been left unattended for six months, or if the private boat has not moved to winter storage. Before becoming SCRC property, a registered letter noting the action and giving two weeks’ notice shall be sent to the owner at the owner’s address noted in the membership list.
  • In order to store boats in SCRC storage space, private boat owners must comply with the requirements set forth by the landlord (for example, sign a waiver).
  • Always row “upstream” on the New Jersey side; “downstream” on the Pennsylvania side.
  • Follow the posted river navigation.
  • When tour boats are present, do not row in a way that blocks their progress.
  • Be conscious of others using the river. For example, fishing boats may anchor in a bridge arch blocking the arch; dragon boats, kayakers, paddle boarders, and water skiers may not follow SCRC river navigation direction; and swimmers are difficult to see.
Safety Flags
  1. SCRC posts safety flags at the site and on SCRC website (com) to identify some rowing conditions.
    • The website “flag” is changed automatically based on data retrieved from NOAA/USGS sites and cannot take into account conditions that are not related to water level and temperature.
    • Conditions observed at the river (e.g., debris) may necessitate a more restrictive flag being posted at the site.
    • The higher severity flag has precedence. Members shall adhere to the higher severity flag.
  2. No member may remove or downgrade a flag without authorization from a board member.  Any member may “upgrade” the site flag from no flag to yellow or from yellow to red if he/she believes there is potential danger to other rowers or equipment. The member must immediately notify the SCRC Board (email board@swancreekrowing.com).
  3. The flags indicate the following conditions and rowing limitations.
    • Red Flag: dangerous conditions. No member may row. For example: water level 12’ or over, water temperature below 45 degrees.
    • Yellow Flag: caution water conditions. Novice boats not permitted to row. Fore example, water level is between 11’ and 12’.
    • Blue Flag: cold water. Water temperature is less than 60 degrees. Novice Master boats and all Youth boats must adhere to the Four-Oar Rule.
    • Fish Flag: shad netting occurring near Lewis Island, which typically occurs in April and May. Give leeway to shad boat and net.
    • Brown Flag: low water. Water level is below 8.5’. Use caution near shoals and through bridge arches.
Four-Oars Rule
  • If the water temperature is at least 45°AND the combined water temperature and air temperature does not total 90, the rowers must row a boat that has at least four oars (i.e., 8+,4+, 4-, 2x).
  • Example 1: if the water temp is 45 and the air temp is 40, the total is 85; therefore Four-Oar Rule is in effect.
  • Example 2: if the water temp is 45 and the air temp is 55, the total is 100 and the Four-Oar Rule is not in effect.
Rowing Restrictions and Requirements
  1. Members shall use good sense when determining if they should launch; weather (wind, fog) and water conditions (debris, white caps) change very quickly and cannot be automatically indicated on the Safety Flag. If in doubt, err on the side of caution and do not row.
  2. No rowing if the river height equals or is greater than 12’, as measured per the NOAA site for Delaware River at Trenton
  3. No rowing if the river temperature is equal to or less than 45 degrees.
  4. No rowing at night.
  5. No rowing in dense fog, defined as limited or no visibility of the Free Bridge (New Hope-Lambertville) from the launch site.
  6. No rowing if you hear thunder or see lightning. Wait 30 minutes after the last sound of thunder before launching.
  7. No rowing if there is a severe thunderstorm or tornado warning issued for Bucks or Hunterdon County.
  8. If there is a severe thunderstorm or tornado watch issued for Bucks or Hunterdon County, coaches and rowers should check radar, use extreme caution, and be in a position to return to the launch area quickly as storms can change course and/or develop unpredictably.
  9. Members should be mindful of the changing times of dawn and dusk during the season. Boats may launch 30 minutes before sunrise and must have a bow light. Boats launching around sunset must launch with a bow light and must return before 30 minutes after sunset.
  10. Complete and submit an iCrew Equipment Damage Report or Incident Report to notify the Board of any issues, such as:
    • You flip when rowing a boat
    • Equipment breaks while you are rowing
    • You hit a pedestrian when launching/returning a boat
    • You hit another boat
    • Launch motor fails during coaching
    • If any behavioral misconduct as outlined by the SCRCs Safe Sport document occurs to you or in your presence
  1. Annually, before using SCRC equipment or racking a private boat, all past members/new members must follow the current process to rejoin/join the SCRC. The current process uses Regatta Central (Clubs > Swan Creek Rowing Club) to renew or join.
    • Complete the membership application
    • Read/acknowledge SCRC COVID waiver
    • If 18 years old or older, read/acknowledge a swim self-certification
    • If under 18, agree to provide swim test certification
    • Add name to US Rowing register and sign waiver
    • Submit dues payment
  2. Before rowing, a new member must successfully complete the Skills Checklist with an approved coach to confirm rowing ability and to acknowledge the SCRC rules.
  1. Dues are non-refundable.  Members with a specific hardship may submit written request to the SCRC president for consideration of refund of dues.
  2. Membership renewal dues and joining dues are set annually by the Board.
  3. The Board determines when renewal dues are due and notifies the current membership (using the email address provided by each member). To be guaranteed a membership space for the new season, the returning member must pay renewal dues by the date set by the Board. If dues from renewing members are not received by the set date, membership is no longer held in good standing and rowing privileges shall not be granted.
  4. The Board determines when a new member may submit a membership application.
  5. Membership dues for new members are due and payable at the time of joining the SCRC.
  6. Every member in the same membership category and time of joining SCRC shall pay the same amount in dues and shall receive the same privileges.
Student Members
  1. Student Member is a rower under the age of 18.
  2. Student Members under the age of 13 must meet the following requirements.
    • Must have a SCRC member sponsor who is the student’s parent, legal guardian, or an experienced adult rower approved in writing by the parent or legal guardian.
      • The sponsor shall row with this student member.
      • The sponsor shall ensure that the student follows SCRC rules.
    • Must wear a PFD, provided by the Student Member.
    • If using SCRC boats, must row only the novice single or in a team boat.
  3. Student Members between 13 and 18 must row as part of the SCRC Youth Program (i.e., during youth practices) unless approved to row at other times (i.e., advanced status).
  4. Student Members between 13 and 18 must meet the following requirements in order to row outside of the Youth Program (called advanced status).
    • Must successfully complete the Basic Skills Checklist including a flip test.
    • Must receive written approval from a parent, coach, and the Board. Typical actions are noted below.
      • Youth Head Coach confirms the Student Member’s proficiency by completing the Basic Skills Checklist.
      • Student Member secures parent/guardian permission and returns to Youth Head Coach.
      • Youth Head Coach forwards the completed Basic Skills Checklist to the Board for approval.
      • Every year, the Student Member must resubmit the Basic Skills Checklist with parental/guardian approval. The Youth Head Coach and/or parent/guardian determines if the member must be re-tested.
    • Must row with another advanced status youth or parent/guardian who is a Club member and experienced rower. 
    • May row only a single or double.
Novice Rowers
  1. A Novice is a rower with less than one year’s rowing experience.
  2. A Novice Boat is a boat that combines Novice and experienced rowers if one of the following conditions is met.
    • Any coxed boat where the coxswain is a Novice
    • 8+, 4+, 4x, 4-, 2-, 2x: boat where 50% or more of the rowers are Novice
    • 1x: boat where the rower is a Novice
  3. Novice Boats may not row when the water is over 11’ (Yellow Flag condition).
    • Exception: If a master novice 8+, 4+, 4x, or 4- boat is accompanied by a dedicated coach in a launch (i.e., the coach/launch is dedicated to one boat exclusively), so long as the coach determines that the crew and coxswain is capable of executing safety commands (such as “hold water,” “back,” etc.) in an emergency situation, the boat may row when the water is over 11’.
  4. Novice rowers may not instruct other novices and may not sponsor guest rowers.
  1. Guests must be 18 years or older, and experienced rowers.
  2. A Guest must have an SCRC Sponsor, who is an experienced, adult SCRC member in good standing.
    • Sponsor is responsible for the Guest being an experienced rower, capable of handling the equipment and rowing safely.
    • Student Members and Novice rowers are not permitted to sponsor guests.
  3. Guest signs a SCRC waiver and swim certification. The SCRC member is responsible to ensure that all information on the waiver is filled in and legible.
  4. Guest must be accompanied by the Sponsor when rowing.
  5. Guest may row only three times as a non-member; after three rows, the Guest must join SCRC.
  1. General Information for all Coaches
    1. Anyone coaching at SCRC must meet the following conditions.
      • Submit a rowing/coaching resume to the Board.
      • Submit a statement confirming that she/he is familiar with and will observe all SCRC rules.
      • Receive approval from the board to coach
      • Read, acknowledge/sign the club waiver, which may be part of joining SCRC as a Coach/Cox
      • Sign the US Rowing waiver, which may be part of joining SCRC as a Coach/Cox
      • Comply with applicable New Jersey State Law associated with power boat operations, if operating a Club launch
      • If coaching Student Members, submit background check
      • If coaching Student Members, complete US Rowing SafeSport training and submit certification
    2. Adult members who are experienced rowers may coach as long as they meet the conditions outlined above.
    3. Coaches complete the Basic Skills Checklist for any new Club members and return it to the membership coordinator.
    4. Issues with SCRC equipment, including a coaching launch, should be reported on the iCrew Damage Report.
    5. Board has the discretion to implement coaching as needed by the Club membership.
  2. Learn to Row (LTR)
    1. LTR instruction for people who do not know how to row occurs during Board-approved, SCRC-sponsored LTR clinics.
    2. The SCRC manages the LTR clinic, including assigning coaches, determining clinic fees, and if/how the coach will be paid.
    3. Coach ensures that the new rower, if joining SCRC, passes the Basic Skills Checklist, and returns the completed checklist to the membership coordinator.
  3. New Members, Experienced Rowers
    1. The membership coordinator determines if a new member is an experienced rower and, if so, assigns a Coach.
    2. Typically, Coaches do not charge for this service.
    3. Coach rows with the new member to confirm the rowing ability, reviews the Club rules including river navigation, and completes the Basic Skills Checklist. Coach returns the completed checklist to the membership coordinator.
  4. Coaching for Experienced Members
    1. Experienced, adult members who have completed the Basic Skills Checklist may secure coaching services for themselves and other adult members who are experienced rowers.
    2. The experienced, adult member manages the coaching, which includes having the coach’s emergency contact information, scheduling the session, ensuring availability of the launch, ensuring that the gas tank is sufficiently full for the coaching session and afterwards, completing any damage or incident reports if applicable, and ensuring that the coach is paid.
    3. Members who receive coaching must be adult Club members approved to row independently in the boat class in which they are being coached. People who do not know how to row and Novice members may not be included.
    4. Members receiving coaching must utilize iCrew to schedule the use of boats for the session.
    5. The coach may not utilize SCRC’s communication platforms, such as iCrew, website, or Constant Contact to communicate with members.

est. 1992