Advice re: September trip to Block Island and Newport
Mr. cthoops and I are taking two weeks off beginning September 22nd to take our first "cruise" on our boat. Weather permitting, our plan is to sail from Groton to Block and then to Newport before working our way back via Point Judith and Stonington. We'll be on a mooring each night except for Point Judith (which doesn't appear to have any transient moorings). We've been building our skills all summer and feel comfortable enough to go for it. That being said, I do have a few miscellaneous questions.
For Block: Which NOAA buoy do you suggest referencing for conditions? The only one listed for Block is actually very far southeast of the island, so I imagine the wave conditions that it shows are not indicative of the area we'll actually be sailing through from Groton. Should I use Montauk? Buzzards Bay?
I've seen in prior posts that people suggest using the showers in the basement of The Oar, but I've also heard from others that the conditions are deplorable. Is that overblown, and perhaps less likely to be an issue this late in the season? I assume those showers are only available when The Oar is open? Has anyone tried the showers at the Old Harbor Dock? Are there also restrooms at the Old Harbor Dock showers? Any suggestions for where we could empty our Thetford while on Block?
Is it safe to assume that getting a mooring during the week in late September won't be an issue?
For Newport: If we arrive in Newport later in the day on a weekend in late September, are we likely to get a mooring? What about during the week?
Finally, if anyone has suggestions re: places to eat or favorite experiences in Block or Point Judith, I'd love to hear them. We've been to Newport many times (although never by boat) but we've only been to Block once for a day trip and never to Point Judith.
1975 Bristol 24 Corsair