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llunved 04-30-2009 07:05 AM

Where to put (and keep) a boat in Boston?
I am about to buy a used sailboat and the next milestone other than deciding which of the candidates (all 27-32 foot) I like most, is to find a place to keep it.

Before I go off and call every marina in the Boston area or fill in forms with the city, I'd like to try getting some best practice ;-). It would be great if someone in this forum would share his or her experience.

I live in the northern Somerville / Medford area close to 93, so Boston harbor seems to be the most convenient place as I can get there in 10 - 15 minutes by car and even take a bike in the summer.

The options I see so far are:
a) a slip at one of the marinas
b) a mooring in the harbor
c) a marina with a mooring
d) yacht club
e) some other harbor

Option a) seems to be straight forward, as sufficient slips seem to be available. The obvious downside is that one year at the slip will cost about 50% of what I am paying for the used boat. Or in other words: $$$$. If I go for that option, the Admirals Hill Marina seems to be a good choice and perhaps Chrystal Cove in Winthrop?

Option b) sounds simple enough - unless there is some hidden complication (anyone here with experience in getting a mooring in boston harbor?).
The obvious problem is how to get to the boat. I have not been able to find much information about a launch service yet, or any marina that would offer a cheap place to put a dinghy. I don't suppose, that the water taxis will actually stop at you boat ;-)

Also keeping the dinghy at home and trailering it to the water is not ideal as I don't have a trailer and public ramps are scarce. There is a nice one in Medford but that would mean running down the Mystic river every time. That will take a looong time. If the Mystic river would be an option I might ask one of the houses that have private docks up in the Winthrop Street area in Medford if I can keep it there ;-)

Now c) comes to mind as a good compromise. But which Marina does actually offer that? And what do they charge? I found some that seem to have it, but they never list the charges - the websites always only have the slip costs.

Option d) seems to mean a long wait.

Finally, e): Quincy bay sounds like a place with interesting options. Of course the same questions apply. Anyone experience there? Lynn to Salem seems to be pretty costly as well?

Thanks for any hint!


sailingfool 04-30-2009 10:58 AM

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Slip space is very expensive, the marinas that had waiting lists in prior years may have open space for this year, but you will pay dearly.

There are a few places that rent seasonal moorings and provide launch services, but the best solution is to join one of the area low key (no waiting list...) yacht clubs, buy and install your own mooring, and use the launch service provided by the yacht club. Cottage park YC worked very well for me in the past, a great place for sailors.


llunved 05-01-2009 06:55 AM

Thanks for the response.

The advantages of slip space IMHO don't justify the cost, so indeed I am not really going for that option if I can find a viable alternative.

Regarding the yacht club: sounds like the ideal solution. How easy is it in practice to join? The bylaws mention the need for sponsors - given that I don't really know anyone there, that is not really easy ;-)

Are there other clubs that someone here has experience with?

I am getting ready to get serious on one of the boats I am looking at. Pending the survey it is pretty much what I am looking for. Classic, solid, not overly complicated, 31 foot.

sailingfool 05-01-2009 10:03 AM

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Most of the clubs outside of Marblehead and the expensive suburban towns take walk-ins. If you don't know someone there, call/email one of the officers say someone involved with membership, introduce yourself, express your interest and you should be able to go from there. Money talks. I am a member at Hull and have friends at Cottage Park.

Joesaila 06-05-2009 07:11 AM

Check Hewitts and Tern Harbor
Both of these have openings and moorings w tender service if you like. I enjoy the privacy of a mooring. The best part is that the bay is pretty big with islands to anchor on and its pretty protected. The bay is a great place to practice and sail on blustery days when you might not go otherwise.

ccollins0601 06-18-2009 07:08 PM

I used to be a member at Squantum YC in Quincy Bay. Moorings were available with membership and they had a launch that could shuttle you in and out if you didn't have a dinghy. I'd recommend you check them out. Not sure what the wait list situation is there now; when I joined about 6-7 years ago I don't think it was too bad. I don't remember what they allowed for dinghy storage.

Also I'd recommend you join Mass Bay Sailors (MassBaySailors : MassBaySailors) if you haven't already. The list members there will have plenty of suggestions.

llunved 06-22-2009 05:58 AM

Thanks for the tips.

Indeed the Yacht Club option turns out to be the best one for my situation. We met very nice people at the CPYC and they provide everything you could need.


BristolJonny 06-22-2009 08:09 AM

I really like winthrop harbor myself. It is well protected and close enough to the city to take the blue line along with a short bike ride to get to a mooring.
Do you know anyone who is an elks member and can sponsor you? I think the Winthrop Elks is the best deal going... They have the same ammenities as a yacht club and are right on the water. Thats another option for ya :)

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