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Old 18-03-2014, 19:38   #1
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BUZZARDS BAY, CAPE COD AND THE ISLANDS

We have 5 weeks to cruise Buzzards Bay, Cape Cod and the Islands on our 45 foot sailboat with 6 foot draft.

Would you locals care to share a few of your favorite stops, marinas, moorings or anchorages with a couple cruising with two teenagers eager for a scenic summer family vacation? Please?

Thx, PJ
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Old 18-03-2014, 21:54   #2
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Re: BUZZARDS BAY, CAPE COD AND THE ISLANDS

New Bedford is interesting. Great Whaling museum. Decent restaurants. They roll up the sidewalks though, so do your walking around before 5:00pm. They have a harbor tour which is interesting also.
Cuttyhunk is a tight harbor but you have to stop there just to say you did. Marthas Vinyard has two harbors. I prefer Edgartown to Oak Bluffs. Plenty of shopping spots to keep you busy and you can dine at a different place all summer.
Redbrook harbor is quiet. One decent restaurant and moorings available.
Lots of little spots in the islands and on the cape. Look at the cruising guide and have a great time.
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Old 18-03-2014, 23:21   #3
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Re: BUZZARDS BAY, CAPE COD AND THE ISLANDS

Where are you coming from and when will you be in the area?

Sent from my SGPT12 using Cruisers Sailing Forum mobile app
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Old 19-03-2014, 04:35   #4
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Re: BUZZARDS BAY, CAPE COD AND THE ISLANDS

Nantucket is definitely worth a trip.

On Martha's Vineyard, I like Lagoon Pond in Vineyard Haven. For the Lagoon you have to wait for a bridge opening, but it's marvelously large and open and uncrowded once you're in.

On the Cape -- don't miss Provincetown. Loads of fun.
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Old 19-03-2014, 04:38   #5
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Re: BUZZARDS BAY, CAPE COD AND THE ISLANDS

The Vineyard actually has five harbors. Menemsha, Lake Tashmoo, and Edgartown are the prettiest, and Lagoon Pond is nice if you go deep inisde. Tenage kids will probably like Edgartown the most, along with Nantucket.

With five weeks of cruising you can include Block Island, Jamestown and Newport, Buzzards Bay and the Elizabeths (esp. Cuttyhunk and Hadley's), the Vineyard and Nantucket, and a couple of the nicer harbors on the south shore of the Cape like Osterville/Cotuit (skip Falmouth and Barnstable). When you get a few days of good weather you can circumnavigate the Cape to see whales, visit Provincetown, and experience Pollock Rip and the Canal.
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Old 19-03-2014, 05:45   #6
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Re: BUZZARDS BAY, CAPE COD AND THE ISLANDS

Forgot to mention that I left our boat in Narraganset Bay up near Providence for the winter. I will be launching in may and the family cruise should be essentially the last week of june and most of july.

Fall plans not made yet... Cheers, and thanks for those replies.
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Old 19-03-2014, 05:55   #7
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Re: BUZZARDS BAY, CAPE COD AND THE ISLANDS

Jim, I'm not familiar with the expression "...they roll up the sidewalk...". Do you refer to the fact it might not be safe to walk out at night, or the city is a ghost town after 5?

FIY I always have a paper copy of a recent WATERWAY GUIDE for the area, and I have been quite pleased with the INTERACTIVE CRUISING GUIDEBOOK from Active captain ( online of offline depending....)

Thx for the recommendations.
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Old 19-03-2014, 06:25   #8
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Re: BUZZARDS BAY, CAPE COD AND THE ISLANDS

Embassy Guide for New England is very helpful as is Eldridge tide and current guide. I would not sail that area without stopping at Block Island. In June and July be ready to be socked in with fog at any time.
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Old 19-03-2014, 07:14   #9
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Re: BUZZARDS BAY, CAPE COD AND THE ISLANDS

No recommendations outside of the general cruising guide stops, but I would recommend a Visual Guide to the Southern New England Coast. It's definitely not a full cruising guide, and lacks contact numbers, VHF channels, recommendations, etc. What it does do is provide aerial views of every entrance and situates them on the standard NOAA charts. It was very helpful to me in translating what I saw on the chart to what I was seeing in front of me.
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Old 19-03-2014, 07:26   #10
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Re: BUZZARDS BAY, CAPE COD AND THE ISLANDS

Actually I do have one recommendation - Napatree Point is a lovely little day anchorage. I've never stayed overnight there but it may be possible. Two beautiful beaches, with the inner island being very warm and protected, and the stretch along the Atlantic just outside of Long Island enough to sometimes get some fun waves for bodysurfing/floating. There are at least two cement poles in the water to watch out for though. It's also a very short walk into Watch Hill with its shops, ice cream parlors, and sandwich stops. Plus, you don't have to pay the $50/day parking that seems to be standard in the summer!
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Old 19-03-2014, 08:46   #11
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Re: BUZZARDS BAY, CAPE COD AND THE ISLANDS

Contact the harbor master in Ptown and get a mooring ball, comes with dinghy dock or anchor out and pay for a years dinghy dock permit. Lots of fun stuff for teenagers and great bus day service to all the beaches, really good food, movies, etc. Bring bikes or rent them.
Wellfleet harbor right off Great Island is also a great anchorage with no dinghy fees and the cape bike trail is right there, also lots to do. All the free oysters you can eat, just don't get caught. Excellent seafood at Hatches, good theater, French bakeries, on and on.
What you get on the Outer Cape is the fabulous National Seashore Park, and less of the society crowd you will see at the Islands on the south side.
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Old 19-03-2014, 10:25   #12
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Re: BUZZARDS BAY, CAPE COD AND THE ISLANDS

Sounds like a great summer ahead. A few thoughts:

Block Island is great, but very crowded on summer weekends. Go on weekdays only. Don't just stay at the harbor. Rent bikes and explore the island. It's easy to do in a few hours. Also, there's a great beach right across from the East side of the harbor. Follow the dinghies.

Agree on P'town, Nantucket, and Cuttyhunk. At Cutty, it's easy to anchor or pick up a mooring outside and avoid the crowded inner harbor. Breakfast at the Cuttyhunk Fishing Club is great with views over to the Vineyard and a bit of a walk to stretch the legs. We enjoy walking over the whole island, but stay out of the long grass to avoid deer ticks (Lyme Disease) which are prevalent on all the islands.

Our favorite spot on Martha's Vineyard is Lake Tashmoo. It's incredibly peaceful and a great place to swing on the hook, swim, read and listen to the ospreys. There's back road access to Vineyard Haven which is about a twenty minute walk.

I grew up in Cotuit. You won't get into Cotuit Bay via the Cotuit entrance. You can probably take six feet into the harbor if you go in the Wianno entrance and follow the Seapuit River and the narrow channel over to the harbor. However, be aware that the channel is VERY narrow and the water is murky. Go slowly on a rising tide or pass it by.

You have some good choices as you leave Narragansett Bay. We like the peace and quiet of Dutch Harbor, but teens may prefer Newport. If you stay in Dutch, you can go ashore and walk about a mile across the island to the Jamestown restaurants. If there's a big swell running in the sound, pulling behind Third Beach at the mouth of the Sakonnet lets the teens head over to burn off energy in the surf.
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Old 19-03-2014, 10:42   #13
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Re: BUZZARDS BAY, CAPE COD AND THE ISLANDS

Quote:
Originally Posted by pjazz View Post
Jim, I'm not familiar with the expression "...they roll up the sidewalk...". Do you refer to the fact it might not be safe to walk out at night, or the city is a ghost town after 5?
Becomes a ghost town
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Old 19-03-2014, 20:59   #14
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Re: BUZZARDS BAY, CAPE COD AND THE ISLANDS

Many great suggestions above. We love Cuttyhunk (how can you not appreciate a floating raw bar with Oysters delivered to your boat.) Also the anchorage behind Napatree Point. It's a long winding way up and with 6' you'd want to be on a rising tide as there's a few skinny spots but we've been in with 6' 4' and no problem. I don't love Watch Hill but the beach at Napatree is great. If you are that far west then coming up to Mystic is fun. You can get a mooring at Noank or Mystic and then take the dinghy right up into the Museum.
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Old 20-03-2014, 11:28   #15
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Re: BUZZARDS BAY, CAPE COD AND THE ISLANDS

Thanks to everyone who contributed to my post... there is nothing like first hand advice.
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