Anchoring or Mooring near Washington DC - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 03-12-2008
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Anchoring or Mooring near Washington DC

Hi:
I am new to sailnet under this name. I had been a member long ago but I guess the member name was purged during one of the transfers or upgrades of the site.

My family and I intend to sail from FL up the eastern seaboard this summer and fall. One destination will be Washington DC.
Anyone have any information about anchorage and/mooring locations near the metro line?
Thanks
JR
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Old 03-13-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnnyReb View Post
Hi:
I am new to sailnet under this name. I had been a member long ago but I guess the member name was purged during one of the transfers or upgrades of the site.

My family and I intend to sail from FL up the eastern seaboard this summer and fall. One destination will be Washington DC.
Anyone have any information about anchorage and/mooring locations near the metro line?
Thanks
JR
Robb Kiker
Robb,

There are people here who can really help but I had a few thoughts.

For sailboats you can get up to D.C. Once you are in the area there are a few options. I often see boats anchored near the Gangplank Marina, and there seems to usually be more room there, I haven't seen it so crowded that nobody else could anchor there. There are a few marinas in the area. The Gangplank and the yacht club beside it are probably the closest to a Metro stop, but none of them on that side of the river is that far away, a few blocks maybe. There are plenty of other places to anchor, I'm sure, but I haven't seen people anchoring in other places routinely, just right there in front of the Gangplank Marina.

Edit, here is a picture that shows the Gangplank Marina. Over to the left of all those boats is the wide open area that people anchor boats, there are often 10+ boats anchored there during the summer. If you follow that bridge in the middle of the picture from left to right, there is a Metro stop basically at the hotel at the right most end of that bridge, so you can see it is really close.

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Last edited by wind_magic; 03-13-2008 at 12:07 AM.
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Old 03-13-2008
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Gangplank and other marinas in the area may also have transient slips, if you're just up for a few days.

Alexandria, VA, also has a town marina IIRC. Don't know how good Metro access from there is though.
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Old 03-13-2008
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Alexandria wouldn't be a good option -- not very protected for anchoring and the King Street Metro stop is too far away. If you have bikes it might work, as might Washington Sailing MArina. WSM is immediately south of Reagan National Airport, you could walk or ride bikes (on a path) to the RNA Metro stop.

But BY FAR the best location for visiting DC is the one that WindMagic described. Good, protected anchorage, with easy dinghy access to Gangplank Marina (they charge a small fee to boats that are anchored out, which gives access to the showers, dinghy dock, etc) and nearby Metro stop. Heck, you can walk to many of the downtown attractions from there without even getting aboard the Metro.

On your chart, the basin in WindMagic's photo is located at the northwest end of the waterway called "Washington Channel". Washington Channel shares a common mouth on to the Potomac with the Anacostia River.

Just a bit further up Washington Channel, under that bridge (too low for larger sailboats but fine for powerboats and dinghies), is another marina called Washinton Marina. They have a good chandlery, for outboard and auxiliary engine parts, marine supplies, etc. They are a dealer for Mercury, Honda, Yanmar, etc.
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Old 03-13-2008
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Gangplank

Highly recommend Gangplank Marina. I keep my Jeanneau 36 there and they are great folks. A transient slip or anchoring out under thier supervision will give you access to heads, showers, laundry, and a very friendly Sunday morning Captain's Coffee. It's walking distance from the La'Enfant metro stop and the National Mall with all the Smithonian Museums and monuments.

James Creek is a short ways up the Anacostia next to USCG HQ and it also has transient slips, but it's a long walk to the Mall or metro. You will have to cab it to either.

Enjoy DC!
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Old 03-14-2008
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When you come into the Washington Channel you will need to check in with the DC Harbor Police. They will do a papers check on your boat. After that you can anchor for up to 2 weeks.
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Old 03-14-2008
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Thanks so much for all the great advice! I am going with the Gangplank marina; Look like the perfect solution for my family.
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Old 03-14-2008
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Both the Gangplank and Capital Yacht Club Marinas are very expensive if you can even get a transient slip. We spent 3 weeks anchored in front of the Gangplank. We initially started using the Capital YC to land our dink. They were charging $15/day. It's a nice facility but we really didn't need their showers or laundry. It did have a bar where they'll accept cash. But that wasn't a consideration either. Being that we were cost conscious cruisers, okay we were cheap, we switched to the Gangplank Marina dinghy dock after a week. They only charged $10/day and $60 for the entire week. Our stay was 3 weeks overall. Either facility is fine.
One word of caution. If you anchor out and go in to check in with the harbor police, DO NOT use their docks. It looks inviting, but they may arrest you for trespassing as indicated on the signs. You think, I'm going to them so why not, but don't do it. Just land at one of the marinas and enter the police facility from shoreside.
And if you want to do a White House tour, start planning now. You need to go through your local Senator or Congressman.
It's a great trip, allow as much time as you can.
Scott

Last edited by Schuckerman; 03-14-2008 at 11:48 AM.
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Old 03-17-2008
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What is involved in a "papers check" with the harbor police? I'd hate to come up short with what's required.
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Old 03-17-2008
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What is involved in a "papers check" with the harbor police? I'd hate to come up short with what's required.

Give them a call and ask.

If you call Gangplank they'll give you the number and a name for who to call, the harbor police is right next to the Gangplank marina.
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