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post #1 of 32 Old 07-26-2007 Thread Starter
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Block Island

First trip to Block Island in early Aug. What is the mooring situation mid-week? Are things as bad as the horror stories I hear about weekends?
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post #2 of 32 Old 07-26-2007
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Don't know about the horror stories, but when we arrived at Block Island a couple of weeks ago on a Tuesday afternoon there were no moorings available. We circled the mooring fields for a half-hour or so, then moved to the anchorage.

The anchorage is fine. Holding seems pretty good. There is a water taxi which will shuttle you between your boat and shore for $3 per person per ride. It worked fine, we had a good dinner at The Oar, and an altogether pleasant experience this time, as in times before.

Bill
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post #3 of 32 Old 07-26-2007
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Moorings are filled up every day of each week during July & August - high season in The Great Salt Pond. Boats do come and go at all times, but you have to be quick.

The typical tactic for crews of boats at anchor, is to watch for the signs of people on town moorings getting ready to leave, then snag the mooring with their dinghy. It's like dinghy bumper boats at times.

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post #4 of 32 Old 07-26-2007
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Block Island is an overcrowded spoiled island. It's charm has led to its fall, in my opinion.

Aside from the madness of traffic and crowds who arrive by ferry and spread across the island on bikes, scooters, taxis and feet.. there are the hundreds and hundreds of boaters who descend on the place from NY, CT. RI and MA.

It's a fav spot for sport fisherman and the marinas raft boats many deep. Disgusting in my opinion.

The dinghy dock is mega crowded and getting a tie up or onto you dink and out again can take serious time. If that's your idea of fun... go for it.

The Oars right on the dock is where sailors go and get drunk and obnoxious along with local youths.

As Bill says you have the option of the Oldport launch if you have the time to spend going from boat to boat as they pick up and drop off customers. This can take up to an hour to finally get to your boat or from your boat to the dock.

Having said all the above, off season BI is really delightful. No crowds, and you can enjoy the island as it was 20 or 30 years ago before it was "discovered". I think the off season population is less than 1,000 and in season it may be 20,000 or more.

When the wind pipes up or squalls come through the anchorage is a madhouse of dragging unoccupied boats. The evenings are filled with the sound of generators and outboards and the smell of grilled food.

It's a fun sail, but my wife hates it and we won't go there in season. You need to experience it though. Don't believe me.. find out for yourself.

jef
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We have always enjoyed the island when sailing there, either alone or with friends - who gather on each other's boat by dink to share laughter, good food and stories over drinks.

Staying in Salt Pond is for cruisers who either enjoy or can at least tolerate a party atmosphere - no one has ever attempted to disguise that fact. Loosen your tie and leave the blue blazer at home.

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post #6 of 32 Old 07-26-2007 Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the input. In retrospect, I'm not sure this is my best trip. (Wife is not thrilled and frankly I'd prefer a little calm for my week off.) I think we'll go for some quieter spots for this trip and hold BI until we can do it earlier or later in the year.

Mistral
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post #7 of 32 Old 07-26-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by l_lym View Post
First trip to Block Island in early Aug. What is the mooring situation mid-week? Are things as bad as the horror stories I hear about weekends?

Not so bad. Should be okay midweek but earlier in the day is better.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SanderO View Post
Block Island is an overcrowded spoiled island. It's charm has led to its fall, in my opinion.

Aside from the madness of traffic and crowds who arrive by ferry and spread across the island on bikes, scooters, taxis and feet.. there are the hundreds and hundreds of boaters who descend on the place from NY, CT. RI and MA.

It's a fav spot for sport fisherman and the marinas raft boats many deep. Disgusting in my opinion.

The dinghy dock is mega crowded and getting a tie up or onto you dink and out again can take serious time. If that's your idea of fun... go for it.

The Oars right on the dock is where sailors go and get drunk and obnoxious along with local youths.

As Bill says you have the option of the Oldport launch if you have the time to spend going from boat to boat as they pick up and drop off customers. This can take up to an hour to finally get to your boat or from your boat to the dock.

Having said all the above, off season BI is really delightful. No crowds, and you can enjoy the island as it was 20 or 30 years ago before it was "discovered". I think the off season population is less than 1,000 and in season it may be 20,000 or more.

When the wind pipes up or squalls come through the anchorage is a madhouse of dragging unoccupied boats. The evenings are filled with the sound of generators and outboards and the smell of grilled food.

It's a fun sail, but my wife hates it and we won't go there in season. You need to experience it though. Don't believe me.. find out for yourself.

jef
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Block Island is great, even in season. Yes it is a party place, but I would not be scared off by comparisons to the "good ole days."
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post #9 of 32 Old 07-26-2007
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Thanks for adding that CB. BI is one of the best island destinations in the northeast. In spite of the circus called Champlins, the weekend crowds on shore and occasional loudmouth boat parties, peace and relaxation can be had on most days - especially if you avoid holidays, the worst being July 4th week.

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post #10 of 32 Old 07-26-2007
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I think it is important to give a complete and accurate picture of BI as it is for any destination. Newport is another great sailing destination and very crowded and tourist, but it does have some more cultural aspects to it aside from beer, beaches and parties. There you have some great museums, architectural trasures, and music world class music festivals plus a huge range of culinary options as well as shopping and so on.

Block Island is a beautiful spot, but in season it has become essentially a noisy crowded party hearty stop for summer fun. That is what it is now. It is well worth a visit, but if you want to see it's natural beauty and charm go in the off season... it is amazingly different. If you want to party... stop by on any weekend from June 21 through Labor Day.

jef
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