Watershed Recreation User Program

Alert for All Recreation Areas at Triadelphia Reservoir

Water Contact Health Advisory due to a high cell count for cyanobacteria. This advisory does not include recreation areas at T. Howard Duckett Reservoir.

An advisory means that there are high levels of blue-green algae in areas of the reservoir and water contact may pose negative health effects. During an advisory, water contact is not advised.

During a health advisory:

  • Recreation areas remain open
  • Boating and fishing are allowed
  • Any body parts that come in contact with reservoir water should be rinsed with drinking water
  • Keep pets away from the water

More information on Algal Blooms can be found here.


Attention Boaters:

Due to the low water level at Triadelphia Reservoir, Pig Tail boat ramp is open to kayaks only. 
Please consider using alternative boat ramps on Triadelphia Reservoir or T. Howard Duckett Reservoir.


Update -  September 4, 2020 

All recreation areas on the T. Howard Duckett and Triadelphia Reservoirs are open starting May 9, 2020, along with the Azalea Garden at Brighton Dam (open 7am –sunset) 

Service animals are the only pets allowed at the Azalea Garden and Brighton Dam Recreation Area. 

The Brighton Dam Visitor Center remains closed.

Continue to practice physical distancing guidelines; limit group size to 10 people or fewer while hiking, picnicking, boating or fishing; wear face masks when in close proximity of others and bring hand sanitizer.  

If you arrive at a location with a busy parking lot, drive to a different location to help maintain physical distance from others.  

Watershed use permits are not required through the remainder of the 2020 recreation season.


Todas las áreas de recreación de las presas T. Howard Duckett y Triadelphia se reabrirán el sábado 9 de mayo de 2020. (7am hasta anochecer)

Animales de servicio son las únicas mascotas permitidas en el jardín de las azaleas o el área de recreación de la presa Brighton. 

El centro de visitantes de la presa Brighton permanecerá cerrado.

Continúe practicando las guías de distanciamiento social; limite su grupo a 10 personas o menos; use un cubrebocas cuando este cerca de otras personas y tenga con usted desinfectante de manos. 

Si el estacionamiento esta muy ocupado o lleno, visite otra de las áreas de recreación para ayudar a mantener la distancia física entre usted y otras personas. 

No se requieren permisos para el uso del área de recreación por el resto de la temporada del 2020.
















Triadelphia Reservoir (Brighton Dam) and T. Howard Duckett Dam and Reservoir are surrounded by 6,000 acres of wooded property that comprise the WSSC Water owned portion of the Patuxent Reservoirs Watershed.

The two reservoirs collect water draining off 132 square miles and can store over 11 billion gallons of water. This water serves as the drinking water for 1/3 of WSSC Water’s 1.8 million customers.

WSSC Water’s watershed recreation program allows visitors access to 6 watershed recreation areas which include picnic facilities and over 16 miles of shoreline fishing and interior recreation trails. All users must purchase a permit to enter and use the facilities.

To learn more about permitted activities review the Watershed Regulations and Watershed Regulations FAQs. The watershed recreation user program is coordinated and supervised by members of the WSSC Water Production Team’s System Control Group. Assigned staff oversee the management of the forested properties, maintenance of trails and roads, regulation of the sale and issuance of user permits and communication with recreation users.

Information regarding the program can be obtained by contacting the Brighton Dam Visitor’s Center at telephone number (301) 206-7485.

Watershed Use Permits can be purchased at the following locations

  • Online
  • Brighton Dam Visitor Center- 2 Brighton Dam Road, Brookville, Maryland 20833
    • 7am - 8pm - March 15 to November 30, including weekends      
    • 7am – 4:30pm - Dec. 1 to March 14.    
    • The Brighton Dam Visitor Center is closed Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. 
  • WSSC Water​ Headquarters - 14501 Sweitzer Lane, Laurel, Maryland 20707
    • 7:30am - 5pm, Monday through Friday. 
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