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post #11 of 25 Old 06-23-2017
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Re: Anchorages with public shore access

In Maryland, and most of the eastern US states where state laws are descended from English Common Law of colonial times, public access is granted *below the mean high tide line*.

Turners Creek access .... From Ordinary Point follow along the W shore, toward the last visible private docks (to port) until it starts to shallow out .... look at 90 degrees before turning ~90° to starboard for a teeny little green buoy (Turner Creek Entrance Buoy #1) almost on the western shore in a small 'bight' .... G1 is almost up on the shore. Follow close to G1 on port, 'land' will be about 10-15' to starboard as you pass G1. Between G1 and the Turners Creek Dock you'll see some private buoys - head directly for them, thence to Turners Creek Public Dock**. Use your depth sounder to continually find the 'deeper' water ... Turners is all loose 'goo' on the bottom; so if you get stuck, just back off and try again.
**Most times the docks will be 'crowded' with tied-up crab boats - there's a specific section reserved 'just' for crab boats and they 'spill over' onto the public docks. Some folks simply 'tie-up' alongside of a crab boat and cross over their bow to the dock.

Entrance to Worton Creek - large riparian zone below mean high tide level on NE shore all the way to the peninsula just W of Tims Creek entrance. Caution - Lots of boulders under the high treeless cliff with the green 'granary' building with the white/silver roof - large boulders and submerged/rotted piles well out from shore from the treeless cliff - don't anchor there; anywhere 'a bit' east of the 'granary' is sandy bottom ... and with a few rotted 18th century colonial ship timbers thrown in for 'fun'. #2 Worton buoy marks a large (1745) wreck.
S. Shore of Worton entrance - large boulders close in to shore; plus, submerged remnants of colonial grain dock w/ submerged jetty, ... don't anchor tight/close to S. Shore. Small beach that 'wraps around' Handy Point (but then continues to Belly Button Beach).

Just South of the Entrance to Worton Creek / Handys Point - (Belly) Button Beach (on the bay proper) .... large beach, large underwater boulders close in to Handys Point. FWIW - Belly Button Beach attracts the local 'hard drug culture' when Worton Creek is over-crowded.

From the 'NE point' at the entrance to Worton Creek - to - Worton Point ... good sandy beach. Only anchor there in mild/settled weather ... good sand bottom (toward the old green 'beach building'). Good fishing when the striped bass are running, always large white perch at the NE entrance point to Worton Cr. !!!

Still Pond
1. .... the peninsula that juts from the NE into the entrance of Still Pond Creek is US govt. owned (abandoned USCG station), shoreline is open public access along Still Pond and Still Pond Creek.
2. ...South shore of the entrance to Still Pond - From Rocky Point out to the bay ... good beach all the way out to the bay proper. Don't anchor there in a NW or N blow.

Corsica R. - The Russians have apparently begun to move back into the Corsica River compound .... and the humongous naked bodies covered with massive cellulite have returned to stroll & waddle along their beach - ugh! So, if you see several 'Jabba the Huts' accompanied by armed guards ... don't go there.

Queenstown - good beach from the north side entrance all the way back and 'around' past Blakeford Pt. Use your depth sounder to keep in the very centerline of the narrow entrance all the way in. Make 90° turn to port behind Blakeford Pt to anchor. Extra Caution - low high tension wires ~1/2nMi. north of Blakeford Pt. on Queenstown Creek.

Last edited by RichH; 06-23-2017 at 11:36 PM.
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post #12 of 25 Old 06-23-2017
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Re: Anchorages with public shore access

Unfortunately, Maryland's and most of Virginia's state parks now require admission fees, which range from $5 per person and up - even if you come in by dinghy. The park rangers can be real SOBs when they see you landing at the beaches and will tell you to leave in no uncertain terms. Even if you shelled out the entrance fees, the parks are overrun on weekends and holidays - it's not a pretty scene at all.

I think you may be able to land at the Hart/Miller Island Complex without paying a fee, but not positive about this. Of course, the only way there is via boat. Also, keep in mind there are no dinghy docks or piers at any of Maryland's state parks where you can tie up for a day, or even a few hours. In some parks, such as Janes Island, Gunpowder, Sandy Point and a few others, they have marinas, but they are exclusively for slip holders that pay in advance, and most are situated in very shallow water.

Many of the waterside restaurants will allow you to tie up to their piers with your boat or dinghy if you are dining there, and some, if it is late in the day, will allow you to stay overnight at no charge.

Kiptopeke State Park, on the southern Delmarva Peninsula, is a great park to explore with miles of fantastic beaches. There is a great anchorage behind the Concrete Liberty Ships, and you could easily swim to the nearby beach, but knowing what I know about the shark population there, I wouldn't recommend it. There's also a nice public beach at Cape Charles, but you will have to pay to stay in the City Marina and it ain't cheap. Good restaurant, though an very nice, new marina.

Good luck on your quest, and I wish I could be of more help,

Gary
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post #13 of 25 Old 06-23-2017 Thread Starter
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Re: Anchorages with public shore access

@chef2sail , nobody is on ignore. Your post appeared while I was writing mine, so I hadn't seen it since I hadn't refreshed my page. Your comments are appreciated.

I had already consulted Active Captain and some cruising guides. But with hundreds of anchorages and thousands of comments on AC, it is slow going, especially since most comments say more about holding conditions than shoreline property rights, and the older ones don't cover recent news like the Russian sanctions and the hostile signs at the Annapolis landings. Given all this, I thought it might be worth creating a message thread while I trudge through the AC reviews.

Comments welcome from those who are willing to post.

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post #14 of 25 Old 06-24-2017
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I copied the following from the Annapolis Harbormasters site:

Dinghies ( max 17?) may be docked at Kunte Kinte-Alex Haley Memorial Park at the foot of Main Street, at the foot of Prince George Street or any of the 23 street ends throughout the city.

So I am not sure what is meant by those signs you noted but apparently boaters are not being excluded from the street ends.

Tod
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post #15 of 25 Old 06-24-2017
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Re: Anchorages with public shore access

Practically every small town on the Chesapeake has a town dock for commercial use. You are allowed to park dinghies at the shallow end, just stay out of the way.

MD has this access list. Maryland's Online Water Access Guide

Virginia has this list. https://www.dgif.virginia.gov/boating/access/

The vast majority are most associated with parks, so you won't find them that way. Although ramps have feed, you can nearly always park a dinghy nearby for nothing.
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post #16 of 25 Old 06-26-2017
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Re: Anchorages with public shore access

Quote:
Originally Posted by CalebD View Post
2nd Quiet Waters park in Harness Creek. Was just there. Trails ashore through woods, on shore toilets and picnic opportunities (bugs permitting). Kayak rentals.

There are some nice spots up the Rhode River too around Camp Letts. I believe the undeveloped coastline belongs to the camp so technically privately owned.
To expand on this a little bit:

In the Rhode, Flat Island is owned by SERC (Smithsonian Environmental Research Center). They have recently placed signs politely asking people not to make landfall on the island because the constant stream of summer people is greatly accelerating the erosion of this tiny island. People do run their powerboats up to the shallows and play in the water though. I'm attaching a screen shot of places to land and play in the Rhode.

The green circles indicate sandy areas that SERC owns but responsible people can land and play or rest for an afternoon if they behave responsibly. Clean up any pet waste, don't litter, don't destroy any natural vegetation, etc.

The red "X's" indicate privately owned property that doesn't really have any beach anyway, only private docks. I believe Big Island is privately owned and the only suitable point for landing is the southern most point.
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post #17 of 25 Old 06-26-2017
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Re: Anchorages with public shore access

We've landed the dinghy at SERC a number of times to hike the trails there and visit their small nature center. They have a free public dinghy dock on the Rhode. It's a neat place.

I'm surprised nobody has mentioned Wye Island. It's our favorite "natural" place to go ashore on the bay. All of the popular anchorages surrounding the island have at least one place where a dinghy can be beached. One time when we anchored in Granary Creek we even just swam to shore.

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post #18 of 25 Old 06-27-2017
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Re: Anchorages with public shore access

Quote:
Originally Posted by 4arch View Post
We've landed the dinghy at SERC a number of times to hike the trails there and visit their small nature center. They have a free public dinghy dock on the Rhode. It's a neat place.

I'm surprised nobody has mentioned Wye Island. It's our favorite "natural" place to go ashore on the bay. All of the popular anchorages surrounding the island have at least one place where a dinghy can be beached. One time when we anchored in Granary Creek we even just swam to shore.
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post #19 of 25 Old 06-28-2017
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Re: Anchorages with public shore access

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Originally Posted by Faster View Post
Interesting.. I just googled 'Chesapeake Marine Parks' and came up empty.

Here in the PNW (BC and WA) there are numerous such parks, providing decent anchorages, some with moorings and/or docks, with significant shore based areas - hiking trails, biffies, camping/picnic areas, beaches, foreshore scrambles. It's one of those things that make this area such a great cruising spot.

Not helpful, I know, but a surprising non-find. Is the entire east coast similar?
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post #20 of 25 Old 06-28-2017
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Re: Anchorages with public shore access

Second the Active Captain advice. We just got a dog over Christmas, so the pet access section has been very helpful when looking for anchorages.

As has been noted, the Smithsonian owns the majority of the land on the Rhode and there is a dinghy dock for going ashore - main shore, not the islands. Here is a link with information on visiting: https://serc.si.edu/visit

And on visiting by dinghy: We have a floating dock where you may tie up your canoe, kayak or dinghy. Motorized boats more than 15 feet long are not permitted, so please anchor out and come ashore by dinghy if you have a larger vessel.

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