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Thread: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

  1. #1
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    Default Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    I'd like to do a short cruise along the eastern Connecticut shore and visit the WoodenBoat show next week. But I'm not having much success finding a guaranteed place to launch and leave the car and trailer.

    Spicer's Marina in Groton would be good, but they say their parking lot is full of boats on trailers, and they don't know if there'll be room during the show dates, Aug. 20-22.

    The state has a couple of big lots and decent ramps, one in Waterford on the Niantic River, the other in the Barn Island WMA. But I can't find information on leaving car & trailer there overnight - is it permitted, is is wise?

    Any other options I'm missing?

    And is anyone else going to sail over to the show?
    -Dave

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    How far are you willing/able to sail? There's a marina with a ramp at the head of Point Judith Pond in Rhode Island that you could check with. https://www.facebook.com/Billington-...4648491643140/

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    There is a public boat launch at the Shipyard end of the Seaport. Then maybe park in the Seaport lot? Worth a call to the Seaport.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    A quick look (Google maps) at the Pawcatuck River shows several boat yards on the Rhode Island side, in Westerly. You might have a look and call them about leaving a trailer.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    Perhaps look for a yard or lot inland, Dave? Launch boat, park trailer. Uber/ cab back to boat.

    Kevin
    There are two kinds of boaters: those who have run aground, and those who lie about it.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    Thanks for all the suggestions. Rob, I overlooked the Pawcatuck River when I was doing my map search and sure enough, there are some small marinas up there. Watch Hill Boat Yard will take care of me. Good location. Thanks for the pointer.
    -Dave

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    You're welcome. Be sure to give us an account of your cruise!

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    FYI for anyone else, the "ramp" just outside the ship yard at the seaport has (for a couple of years) been blocked by large concrete blocks and is closed for all but carry-ins (canoes - kayaks - SUP's etc)

    The ramp at Barn Island is a good ramp, but as mentioned I don't know about overnight parking.

    The town or Westerly has a pretty good ramp at the head of the Pawcatuck River that may well be ok for parking overnight.

    There is (or was) a small ramp also right on the west side of the Mystic River between the two bridges. The problem with that one is there is absolutely ZERO parking anywhere.

    I'll be heading over to the Seaport for the weekend from the Pawcatuck River on Friday and may be able to help get boats/people over to the show if they need help.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    Wish you better luck than this guy:


  10. #10
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    I may have an inside track for tying up.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    Quote Originally Posted by nedL View Post
    FYI for anyone else, the "ramp" just outside the ship yard at the seaport has (for a couple of years) been blocked by large concrete blocks and is closed for all but carry-ins (canoes - kayaks - SUP's etc).
    That’s too bad. I know Thad launched his dory from a trailer there. And the satellite photo shows a truck launching a boat from a trailer still. Glad there are other options.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    I came across the info below on CT boat launches the other day, so I thought I would share it. It is from the FAQ in the CT launches info online. So, free ramps, free overnight parking, but buyer beware. Also, they note elsewhere on their site that if all the parking spots are full, then the ramp is closed. There is a directory of ramps if you google "CT boat launches" or some such. There are some near New London. Here's the info that might be useful.

    Is there a fee for using a State boat launch?

    The State boat launches are free of charge unless they are in a State Park. If the park has an entrance fee, you must pay the entrance fee to get access to the launch.

    Do I need a permit or sticker to use a state boat launch?

    No, a permit or sticker is not required....


    When are the State Boat Launches open?

    State boat launches are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, unless it is in a State Park. Boat launches in State Parks are open during park hours only.

    Can I park overnight at a boat launch?

    Yes you may do so at your own risk for up to two (2) days. We recommend you inform our Environmental Conservation Police at 860-424-3333.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    Paul -- Thanks for digging that out. It's the information I couldn't find, and calls and and email to the state didn't bring any results.

    Ned -- About that inside track. I'm interested. I assumed I'd be anchoring and looking for a dinghy dock to get into the show. Do they provide one?
    -Dave

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    You're welcome. CT a long way from Milwaukee, but we have kids there, and I was doing some daydreaming...

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    Quote Originally Posted by Woxbox View Post
    Paul -- Thanks for digging that out. It's the information I couldn't find, and calls and and email to the state didn't bring any results.

    Ned -- About that inside track. I'm interested. I assumed I'd be anchoring and looking for a dinghy dock to get into the show. Do they provide one?
    My boat is registered for the Antique Marine Engine show (the same weekend), so I will be tied up down at the shipyard end for that.

    Dinghy Dock for anchored boats -YES- There are floating docks specifically for that purpose at the very north end of the Seaport. There is also open anchoring permitted in the river just north of the Seaport. Just be careful as the water gets quite thin (with thick mud) at low tide west of the channel.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    OK, Got it. Thanks, Ned.
    -Dave

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    How much does your boat draw ? I'm thinking she's a small centerboarder . Coming from Pawcatuck River on the weekend the channel that leads out of Little Narraganset Bay can be crowded with large overpowered boats . The exit at the NW extremity of Sandy Point on a busy weeekend afternoon is particularly bad .Unless you have the perfect breeze you won't be able to sail that if the boats are swarming . I always think as a small boat owner that it's fun to do the things the big boats can't , and to stay away from them if possible . Look at the chart and you'll see that there's a shallow passage West of Dennison Rock that's passable for a small trailorable center boarder and not much else . My brother has done this in the past but now owns a bigger fixed keel boat ,so no go . You need really shallow draft ; full positional awareness ; and a rising tide : also settled conditions and a fair breeze ( or oars) . If it's rough of course no go . Think mild summer day .The attitude would need to be that if the boat grounded you'd simply pole or walk her a off ,no big deal . MHW 2.7 ft. , just to give you some idea . Once through the 1/4 mile +- of shoal you'd have open water to sail . Head for Mason Point .Coming back in with a riseing tide would seem most advantageous ,and you'd outflank the traffic jam in the main channell . Locals will know more of course .Maybe one of the kayak forums ?

    https://charts.noaa.gov/OnLineViewer/13214.shtml

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    Bill, Thanks for that advice. I'd been looking at that option on the chart and thought it might be a high tide option. I only need 2 feet to sail and 1 foot to row or motor, so on a calm day I could certainly keep out of the traffic.
    -Dave

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    My brother just got back to me on this . He still comes through there with his keel boat ! .It turns out there's a significant narrow shifting channel not shown on the chart ,marked with private big red bouys :Red Right Returning . This is also filled with power boats going full tilt ; but the channel is much shorter and you emerge into open water . It's quicker. My brother has his mooring in Noank ,so knows this well . See Google Earth .
    Last edited by Bill Perkins; 08-19-2021 at 12:20 PM.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    Yes, in light of the hurricane warnings, I scuttled the plan to sail in and out of the show. So I drove over, will check it out Saturday, and then scurry home before the storm hits Sunday. Perhaps next year I can put the plans here into action. I expect the show will be cut short, too. Looks like it will be the worst to hit this area in 30 years.

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    Well,….. we’re here.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    Noank is not a well protected harbor .My thoughts are with those on that coast ,including members of my family . Are you going to stay above the bridge ?

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    The show is closing at the end of the day today.
    -Dave

  24. #24
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    Default Re: Ramps in Conn for WoodenBoat Show?

    The workers at Mystic are going to be working frantically today to secure all their vessels.
    Hope all goes well.
    Year after year, the boat show has been blessed with good weather.
    Hope everyone and their boats gets out of there and home before the storm.
    I was born on a wooden boat that I built myself.

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