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Old 12-07-2018, 10:51   #1
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Point Judith to Fishers Island sound

I値l be making a transit from point Judith to Fishers Island Sound in the next few weeks in a Catalina 25. Could anyone share how your transit here went ? I would appreciate any advice! Thank you.
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Old 12-07-2018, 11:22   #2
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Re: Point Judith to Fishers Island sound

We sail out of Groton so Fishers Island Sound is our home water. Where are you heading?

Although we currently have a Bristol 29.9, our first boat was a Bristol 24 that we took to Block Island, Newport, etc. It's a piece of cake - lovely sailing, although this time of year with the prevailing southwest winds it's likely to be wind on the nose the whole way (in other words, a motorfest). Just check the weather and make sure you time the current through Watch Hill Passage. You can check Eldridge for the current information or look it up on the NOAA site.

Have fun!
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Old 12-07-2018, 13:42   #3
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Re: Point Judith to Fishers Island sound

Actually will continue Westward to Norwalk so I値l need an overnight somewhere, maybe Mystic.
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Old 13-07-2018, 08:35   #4
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Re: Point Judith to Fishers Island sound

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Actually will continue Westward to Norwalk so I値l need an overnight somewhere, maybe Mystic.
If you want to anchor, you can pop into West Harbor on Fishers Island. Lots of room, very pretty, and you can see the Milky Way at night.

For a mooring in the Mystic area, we've stayed at Noank Village Boatyard a few times and have been quite happy with it. Lots of great Boat TV (as we call it) on the Mystic River.

Have a nice trip.
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Old 13-07-2018, 10:28   #5
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Re: Point Judith to Fishers Island sound

Be aware you could encounter fog upon the approach.
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Old 13-07-2018, 18:58   #6
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Re: Point Judith to Fishers Island sound

I've done this transit many times, and kept a couple of boats in Fishers Island Sound (Noank).

You'll want to have a fair current with you. Check the venerable Elderidge book for the way to do it starting where you are, and plan to ride the current all the way to Norwalk if you time things right. it will make a good difference for your size boat.

check the currents at Watch Hill Passage as the water boils there when the tide is ripping and pulling the buoys down. Once through Watch Hill pass you can head immediately to East Harbor of Fishers Island; wonderful, protected from all sides but the north wind. no place to land though. if you want to go ashore head to Stonington harbor, get a mooring and then you can get over to the various bars and cafes.

Also, have a plan to go on the south side of Fishers Island, especially if you are moving with good speed, and then enter Fishers Island Sound via The Race. Check the time of the flood current there to ride in, then you can tuck around the west end of Fishers and up into the West Harbor, also excellent cove in anything except north winds. no place to land there, if you want to go ashore grab a mooring from Spicers or Noank Shipyard. Seahorse Restaurant is fantastic and reasonable. also the tourist lobster places are at hand (though overpriced for what you get).

or you might enter the Sound at The Race and continue to Westbrook, or New London, or the Connecticut River. lots of great places to spend the night.

the other thing to consider is the prevailing SW winds which are sometime W. this can be a chopping ride if you enter/ride with the flood tide. if you had a W or E wind at Judith you might head south towards Block then wait for the SW to start in the afternoon and come in on one long tack - I did that many times. you'll do hull speed plus the fair current - fast and flat.

Once I waited for a low pressure cell to roll though CT/MA and it created an 20 kt ENE wind for me to blast from Judith all the way to Milford fast no stops. unfortunately it troubled the Sound waters enough to anger the Admiral, but worked like a charm for a fast sail in my 41' boat.

pick your wind, ride the flood, careful in Watch Hill or The Race. Enjoy.
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Old 13-07-2018, 19:30   #7
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Re: Point Judith to Fishers Island sound

+ 1 on the currant throughout the Watch Hill Passage. It can get mess there. Once behind Fishers Island, you can find some nice protected areas with good holding. We visited friends at the Noank Boatyard - I recall it being very nice. There is a lot of boat traffic on the Mystic River this time of year. If you go to Watch Hill, be sure to stay in the marked channel as the water can be a little skinny. There are nice places to drop the hook by Watch Hill as well.
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Old 13-07-2018, 19:50   #8
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Re: Point Judith to Fishers Island sound

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You can check Eldridge for the current information or look it up on the NOAA site.

Have fun!
Eldridge for best time to travel.
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Old 13-07-2018, 19:56   #9
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Re: Point Judith to Fishers Island sound

All good and accurate info, especially going through the passes. I usually anchor behind the breakwater in Stonington, can get the launch to go ashore. Continuing west, good anchorages at Duck Island Roads, or get as far as Charles Island in Milford Harbor. Getting from Watch Hill pass, Fisher's Island to Norwalk is a very long day,you probably will want to break it up. Keep the tides in your favor.
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Old 13-07-2018, 19:59   #10
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Re: Point Judith to Fishers Island sound

Great advice from @Symphony. The nicest stop in FIS is Stonington, and moorings are available from Dodson's Boatyard or you can anchor and have public dinghy access on the east side of the harbor by the Gazebo structure just south of the Breakwater restaurant.

Onward to Norwalk, for a boat your size a good overnight stop choice is South Cove -- it's on the west side just inside the entrance to the CT River. Pick any vacant mooring sporting a yellow ribbon on the pickup stick. The yellow ribbon indicates the owner is gone for the night -- free overnight tie up. Nearby dinghy dock and reasonable walk to shopping/restaurants.
Other nice stops are Clinton, Duck Island Roads, Branford, Milford. Time the currents and gain ~1-2 knots.
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Old 15-07-2018, 16:32   #11
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Re: Point Judith to Fishers Island sound

Thank you all for all the helpful replies.

Would you advise transiting Watch Hill Pass at max current favorable to my direction or is that to be avoided because of the turbulence?
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Old 15-07-2018, 16:48   #12
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Re: Point Judith to Fishers Island sound

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Thank you all for all the helpful replies.

Would you advise transiting Watch Hill Pass at max current favorable to my direction or is that to be avoided because of the turbulence?

Go when you need to. Even better if you can go at peak current favorable to your desired direction. Don't worry about the turbulence, but do watch for cross currents that can sweep you off course (especially when avoiding nearby buoys or lobster pots).
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Old 15-07-2018, 17:30   #13
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Re: Point Judith to Fishers Island sound

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Thank you all for all the helpful replies.

Would you advise transiting Watch Hill Pass at max current favorable to my direction or is that to be avoided because of the turbulence?
Depends on your skill level and crew.
for me: Fast is fun and good experience.

the Pass is wide for your boat. have your motor warmed up when you enter to feel more confident.
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Old 15-07-2018, 18:24   #14
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Re: Point Judith to Fishers Island sound

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Actually will continue Westward to Norwalk so I値l need an overnight somewhere, maybe Mystic.
I知 on a mooing now in New London. This suppose to be a fee, but but theres no one to pay it to. Easy in and out from the sound
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Old 15-07-2018, 19:10   #15
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Re: Point Judith to Fishers Island sound

Depending on where you are when, consider overniting at Guilford town harbor (water/power/bathroom that's it).....check with harbormaster from 9-4 ,7 days/wk on slip availability or tying up to the harbor bulk head which will accommodate your length ,during the day, 2 restaurants are open overlooking the harbor - Lobster Pound open til about 4pm or Moorings open til 10pm or so...casual dining, moderately priced...downtown is a 20 minute walk, but sidewalks roll up about 6pm...channel is well marked and only about a 10-15 min motor into the harbor from the bell buoy-protected from every direction. on your chart, harbor is about 3 miles north of Faulkner island/lite...enjoy your trip.
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