Originally Posted by Island Time O25
Salem Harbor in MA has a bunch of large mooring
fields for each of the 7-8 towns surrounding it. Each has some form of launch service
. Some have waiting lists for the mooring
permits, others don't. Best to call each town's harbormaster directly and they will put you in touch with the right people to talk to.
When I was looking for a spot for my boat
12 years ago I looked far and wide as I am somewhat inland and other than downtown Boston and immediate areas close by (which were not a good fit for me for number of reasons, $40/day parking among them) everything else was at least an hour away. So I considered SE part of MA, incl. RI, North shore and up to Portsmouth,NH. Salem Harbor won hands down as it is almost half way to many weekend destinations. 50nm to P-town, 15nm to Rockport, 60-70nm to Portsmouth, 15nm to Boston, etc. Basically you can do weekend trips to most places and long weekend ones to some others. I am still trying to put together a crew for Bar Harbor trip but am having a tough time getting my sailing buddies to commit for a full week.
SE area is also nice as you can reach Block Island, MV or even Nantucket
on a weekend trip.
I agree that Salem is a pretty ideal location on the north shore of Boston. We spent one summer there at the Brewer marina and really enjoyed it.
One heads up....if you rent a mooring for the summer in Salem be sure to settle whether you or the marina will be responsible for the mooring permit
fee before you sign on the dotted line. We found out the hard way that even though we didn't own the mooring, since our boat
was on it, the town expected us to pay that fee and it was a couple hundred $$ if I remember correctly.
we had our boat down there the Brewer yard was filled up so they were unsure whether they could squeeze us in as of Sept 1, so we decided to make other arrangements and decided that we'd try Cape Anne Marina in Gloucester. Brewers eventually found room for us but by then we'd already committed to Cape Anne Marina so took the boat up there to be hauled. Everything about the place was a very pleasant surprise! It's about 1/4 mile up a river so there's no waves or swell at the dock
and they have plenty of dock
space. They have a very large travel lift
so with our 47' sloop
we didn't need to disconnect our forestay. There is a decent (not fancy) hotel
right on the premises so you can stay right there while winterizing/commissioning your boat in the fall/spring, or just visiting her during the winter
. A decent restaurant in the hotel
and lots of other great options for dining in Gloucester. But the best part of the Cape Anne Marina was the people! EVERYONE out in the yard was constantly trying to be helpful. If you asked where something was (step ladder, wheelbarrow, travel lift
operator, etc.) they took you to it or found it for you. If you crossed paths while walking across the yard, they would ask if they could help you...and they really meant it! As a lifetime Mainer it's not really considered an appropriate thing to do to be saying nice things about "Massholes," but the ones at Cape Anne Marina couldn't have been any nicer or more helpful/competent and that was from the owner all the way down to the bottom painters. Also, prices were more reasonable for winter storage
than in the Salem area yards.