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jwoytek 08-26-2008 09:18 PM

Maybe a new Lake Erie sailor...
Hello. I'm new to SailNet, and a little new to sailing. I bought a silly little sailing dinghy (rigid with daggerboard, also set up to function as a standard dinghy with oar lock slots and the like) about a month ago to take up to a house that my parents had rented on Lake Huron in Michigan. Having never sailed before, but after reading a lot of books, it took a little while (and the help of a friendly neighbor) to become successful at making my little boat go. I spent a bunch of time on the little bay that opened up from the house where we were staying, and it was great. I even convinced my wife to come out with me in this small little boat with me (and I'm a pretty big guy). I was bitten by the bug, and it wouldn't let go.

Returning to our home near Pittsburgh, PA, I joined a local sailing club (Moraine Sailing Club at Moraine State Park), and have been taking some instruction there to qualify for my US Sailing small boat certification. I'm only one skill demonstration away from that (man overboard), but that will likely have to wait until next season, due to my schedule this year.

I'm considering buying a boat of our own at this point--one that is big enough that we can take a few friends out when we want, or take ourselves out for a few days if we want. I've found a few prospective boats, and now have to make the decision whether I will be looking specifically at a trailer-able boat, or if I'm going to go with something that is not trailer-able. Erie, PA is our nearest major city on Lake Erie. There are some smaller lakes in the area that would be candidates for a trailer-able boat, but if I go the non-trailer route, I want it on the Great Lakes.

To that end, I've contacted some of the Port of Erie marinas to get price quotes on something around 27'. I'm interested to know if anyone would be able to recommend any marinas that are not necessarily *in* Erie, but near-by. Since we're coming from just a little north of Pittsburgh, 20 minutes here or there doesn't matter much. Any suggestions? We don't need anything really fancy, but would probably like a place with water, power, ice and showers, and that has storage space available for wintering-over.


sailortjk1 08-26-2008 09:26 PM

Welcome aboard and good luck with the boat seach. As you know, Erie can kick up a very nasty chop, so I would recommend something that is sturdy and seaworthy.

If you want to start your searching for a marina, try this link. It might be a good place to start.

Aerial Photography of Marinas, Lighthouses, Ports, Restaurants, and more. Purchase framed marine images.

Here is an example close to Erie.

North East Marina in Pennsylvania, United States. Buy high quality framed images, prints, t-shirts. Up to date marine weather, services information, and photos

EBdreamn 08-30-2008 06:50 PM

try Conneaut OH...

Aeolis 09-22-2008 08:00 AM

personally im harbored at the presque isle marina. it has access to power and water if u need it, and if u need ice you pass several stores on the way in. plus they have winter storage there. another plus is that my slip rate on the penninsula is at least half as much as the mainland.

jwoytek 09-22-2008 10:06 PM

Thanks for the suggestions, folks. I'm seriously looking at the Presque Isle Marina. Now I just need to make the finances work to get the boat. :)


richrand 10-26-2008 03:38 PM


I just moved to pittsburgh and I'm looking for a marina too. Did you decide on Presque? How is it?

jwoytek 10-26-2008 06:50 PM


Originally Posted by richrand (Post 390646)

I just moved to pittsburgh and I'm looking for a marina too. Did you decide on Presque? How is it?

Congratulations! My wife and I really like it here. Of course, I'm from here, so maybe I'm a little biased. :)

I am still investigating marinas--partially because I don't yet have a boat to put into a marina. heh. Conneaut, which is just about the same drive-time as Erie from us, has a city-managed (I think it is city-managed) marina that seems to have the best prices of anyone I've checked. They don't offer off-season storage or lift-out, though--you have to use another boatyard that they recommend for that. I put a call into Presque Isle the other day to get some better pricing information, and I need to call them back this week. So things are still a little up in the air. I physically visited the Presque Isle marina several weeks ago, and it looks like a nice spot. I didn't do much investigation or talk to anyone while I was there, though. I think I'll still want to talk to someone who actually uses it before I commit to it, which is another reason why I've called them--I'm hoping to get some contacts of current users who might be willing to talk to me.

Even though Conneaut is less expensive and is about the same drive-time, I'm still seriously considering marinas in Erie. Erie has other benefits for us, since we have some family there and we're pretty familiar with the area.

On a similar topic, I'm also still investigating a few of the yacht clubs in Erie. Not having experience with such things, I'm still trying to figure out exactly what those costs might be. :)

If you get additional information, I'd be interested to hear from you. There are some other local sailing grounds that might be attractive to you (and to us, if we can't initially afford the boat and dockage in Erie). If you're interested in hearing me babble on about that sort of thing, PM me.


Kallisti 08-07-2009 12:21 PM

I live in pittsburgh and have also been shopping for a marina in Erie. I am currently up to my ears in a restoration ( almost ready for paint!:D ) of a Grampian 26 I purchased in febuary. I am leaning toward Presque Isle also for both price and convenience but have been too busy to get up there and check it out. I don't think I will get her wet this year but i would like to have her in a marina yard by winter so she will be ready to go next season. I would like to hear from anyone who has experience with marinas in the area.


EBdreamn 08-08-2009 08:38 AM

There are some spots west of Erie in Ohio. Conneaut and others. E

Alibaba 02-21-2010 11:19 PM


Originally Posted by jwoytek (Post 372969)
Thanks for the suggestions, folks. I'm seriously looking at the Presque Isle Marina. Now I just need to make the finances work to get the boat. :)


Forget presque isle marina. There is a few years wait. I dont think you are allowed to sleep on your boat overnight. You have to motor out about 300 yards into Marina lake and drop anchor.

Presque Isle bay is great. once you start going there you will laugh at Marain state park. Lake Erie is good sailing in the summer months, if its too rough you can usually still sail along the coast East of Erie or stay in the Bay. If the Winds are out of the North East, just stay in the Bay.

I have been sailing out of Erie Pa for over 30 years. I had a trailerable Macgregor 26D and spent many nights in Marina Lake or I would sail across Lake Erie and drop anchor at long point lighthouse in Canada. There are some small towns if you cross the bay further into Canada.

30 miles west in Conneat Ohio. You can drop anchor there, they have some small restraunts there. .
North East Pa is 15 miles East, I usually pull in after dark and tie off at the launch ramp overnight. 1 good restraunt.
Barcelonia New York is another 12 miles East, Its a protected entrance and you can stay at the dock for $10.00 a night. A few good restraunts within walking distance.

I keep my boat at BayHarbour East. the old cherry street marina. they have a few slips available in the 25`

Commodore Perry Yacht club is between BayHarbour East and BayHarbour West. Two years ago they extended the concrete wall and there is room to expand for a few hundred boats. .

Good Luck.. Hope to see you around.

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