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Old 08-16-2009, 01:43 PM   #1
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I'm about to head south around Cape Cod. Looking at the charts and my US Coast Pilot chapter 2 anchorage 110.38 Edgartwn Harbor, MA is a Special anchorage:

"This area is reserved for yachts and other small recreational craft. Fore and aft moorings and temporary floats or buoys for marking anchors in place will be allowed. All moorings shall be placed that no vessel when anchored shall extend into waters beyond the limits of the area. Fixed mooring piles or stakes are prohibited"

but when I look on google earth this is very obviously a mooring field....

What gives.. is anyone familiar with this anchorage.... I was hoping based on the Coast Pilot to be able to drop the hook here but from the looks of google no way.... and I'm sure those moorings aren't free....
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Old 08-16-2009, 02:30 PM   #2
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Just talked to the Edgartown Harbor Master. According to them, they don't know where I'm getting my information (I kept repeating myself "US Coast Pilot chapter 2") and the inner harbor, 110.38, is a mooring field only with no anchoring allowed. Picking up a mooring is $40/day, into the cities pocket...

So I called the local CG station... they assured me that a town harbor master does not have the authority to disregard the US Coast Pilot.... but that they have a close working relationship with all the harbor masters in their area and they have better local knowledge and usually take their recomendatins... in other words, no clue either...

What a heap of crap... I told them they need to issue a notice to mariners if the Coast Pilot is innacurate but they just hmm'd and haw'd....

yet another example of cities encroaching on CG anchorages and no one willing to do anything about it because of fiscal politics.
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Old 08-16-2009, 05:43 PM   #3
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Hi, there,

Oh, confusion confusion. This is a common thing for municipal governments or local port authorities to overreach. However, in some places, the local port authorities have weaseled "control" of their harbors from the CG. Officially. What this means is that what the locals do is blanket "OK" with the CG. That is not likely the case where you are, but here in San Diego, CA there is a fairly well known "federally designated free anchorage" that the local port authority shut down. They were able to do so because in the 1960's the federal government gave the port authority patrolling jurisdiction and in the early 1980's ceded all control of the harbor to the San Diego Port Authority. What the port immediately did was get rid of ALL free anchoring around the bay (prior to this, one could anchor almost anywhere in the bay) except in the designated anchorages. Then, they systematically restricted anchorages to the point where a live aboard cannot possibly mange to do so in the legal anchorages (limited number of permits per month) and they shut down the unlimited federal anchorage (locally, A-8). It can happen. Here in San Diego, the "cruisers anchorage" is available for non-San Diego residents who are in transit. Unfortunately, even that is difficult because a cruiser can only obtain 3 permits per any 360 day period. Each permit is for 30 days whether or not you use the 30 days. What this means is that a cruiser who might come through here many times while cruising Baja or up and down the coast (which many people do here in So. Cal) they will have to deal with 3 day permits in other anchorages or make sure they don't have more than 3 permits in the cruisers anchorage in a 360 day period. Strange rules on the part of the local government that just seems to focus on getting rid of cruisers or live aboards in San Diego.

I would suggest that you take the time to write a quick note to the Coast Guard about your concerns. Main concern would be that a federally designated anchorage is being taken away by a local government. Preemption rules always trump local governments except in the case when the federal government has ceded to state (and by extension, local) government.
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Old 08-16-2009, 07:06 PM   #4
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yeesh... now I'm just glad I didn't buy a boat in the west coast
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Old 08-17-2009, 03:16 AM   #5
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yeesh... now I'm just glad I didn't buy a boat in the west coast
Yea, well if we'd just manage to get it together enough to LEAVE San Diego, we'd be fine Most other places are pretty cool about things, just not here.

Enjoy your travels.
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Old 08-18-2009, 12:32 AM   #6
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Well Martha's Vinyard is definitely off the list for this year... just found out our good ole Commander in Chief Obama is going to be in the Vinyard sailing and golfing this weekend... ... I don't even want to imagine the extra traffic and security that will cause... count me out for sure... I'm just going to skip it and slip through Woods Hole and pop into New Bedford instead.
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Old 08-20-2009, 01:47 PM   #7
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Try Lake Tashmoo ... it's on the north shore of Martha's Vineyard facing Woods Hole & quite near Vineyard Haven ... very sheltered & holding is good ..... alternatively try Menemsha, also on the north shore but further west near Gay Head & facing Quicks Hole ... might be a little too rural for some folks but frequent public bus service all over Martha's Vineyard .... also nearby is Cuttyhunk ... sheltered harbour with anchoring area on the north & east edges of the mooring field .... you mention skipping over to New Bedford but dont expect to find too much decent anchorage there ... with hurricane Bill imminent your best bet is probably Lake Tashmoo or Menemsha ... imho

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Old 08-20-2009, 05:58 PM   #8
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thanks for teh recomendations, I'll look them up in my charts... the more rural the better in my book...

yeah... Bill has me sitting tight for the moment... once he's past I'll take another look at moving south.

As for New Bedford, never been there but heard good things about the outer harbor anchorage... only one way to find out...
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Old 09-09-2009, 03:26 AM   #9
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thanks for teh recomendations, I'll look them up in my charts... the more rural the better in my book...

yeah... Bill has me sitting tight for the moment... once he's past I'll take another look at moving south.

As for New Bedford, never been there but heard good things about the outer harbor anchorage... only one way to find out...
Cuttyhunk is also a cool spot .
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Old 09-14-2009, 09:26 PM   #10
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Cuttyhunk is also a cool spot .
Cuttyhunk is a great spot, but the holding is not that good, and somewhat limeted in the inner harbor. Sometimes, the winds can pipe up and you will find yourself dragging in the middle of the night.

I heard that the outside has a it better holding, but is not as "cool"

On the west side of the CC canal, there is Bassets Island. There is great holding there, and pretty well protected.

Further down, I would recommend Dutch Harbor, behind Jamestown. Even 10 ft sand and good holding.

On the tip of Long Island Sound, you can harbor inside of Lanke Montouk. You need to creep around the edge to get inside. It is 8 ft deep there and very well protected.
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