Great Oaks (Fairlee Creek) is one of the classic entrances on the bay. As you come in the winding extremely narrow channel youcan literally extend your boat hook and touch the beach where people can be sunbathing.
We avoid this anchorage as it is a major haven for powerboaters and loud loud parties and raft ups. I have seen some pb actually fighting amongst themselves several times when either a 6 person raft up broke loose and came down on a bunch of anchored boats. Another time there was a large raft up playing loud music at 2 AM and when they wouldnt shut up when asked by another pb he fired a flare over their heads.
The marina there is top notch and the restaurant is also good. We head there in Sept/ Oct
just north of Fairlee Creek/ Great Oak Landing is one of my favorite places to anchor. There is a wide baylike area just outside the entrance to Worton Creek "R2". The shore is completely undeveloped (there is one farm building on a high sandy cliff). The entire area is 10 ft of good holding.
Mind your charts and GPS if you choose to anchor along the northern edge of the anchorage, there are a few submerged piles that are visible at low tide (the cormmorants use them to stand on and dry their wings). The northern edge is the nicest though, you have a long view across the bay for some great sunsets. There are bald eagles and osprey that roost in the trees at the top of the sand cliffs. I once had an eagle pull a big fish from the water within 100 or so feet of my boat, a cool sight.
If its wind from the south through west, it can get rolly in the anchorage outside of the creek. You can just duck into Worton creek proper and anchor to starboard just past the 1st mooring field. Be aware the the depth is thinner here, but the holding is good. The area of Worton Creek is only a few NM (less than 5) up the bay from Fairlee, so it won't be too far to meet up with your friends.
You can anchor in fairlee creek, but like the chef says its a powerboaters dream come true, and i mean that in a bad way:laugher .
Zoom in on the upper right hand side of chart 12278 and check it out: Chart 12278
or zoom in on about dead center of 12273 fo a similar view: Chart 12273
We have no problem in still Pond with 4'5". If you are trying to go up the creek/ river now that is trecherous and shallow. I only do that on dinghy rides. You can anchor in the north part of the cover very close to the shore, but usually on weekends there are rafts of PB there so we usually pull back some. The only exposure to the Bay is on a NNW fetch.
Denise, I agree with the previous comments on Fairlee. Tricky to get into and boisterous to say the least. It's one of the go fast boys favorites hang outs. If you're going to stay I'd get a slip. Worton is apx 30 mins away and certainly one of the nicest anchorages on the bay. As for Still Pond it's anohter nice place to hang on the hook. Don't confuse Still Pond with Still Pond Creek. The Creek is to Port once you're well into the cove. There's a very narrow and shallow channel. Once you're inside there is water for a shallow draft boat but it requires local knowledge to find it. I've only been in there with power boaters. I wouldn't even think of taking a sailboat in unless it had a very shallow draft.
Yeah, I was talking about Stillpond Creek. I have been in there with a 4'6" draft but grounded when leaving at slightly less than high tide. I am talking about past the Coast Guard station. Once you are in there is 8-10ft of water. Now I have 4'8" draft..
I find a lot of rolling when I tried anchoring out in the Still Pond cove.
Fairlee and Worton give you a still night.
Fairlee can be tricky, but once you do it, it's apiece of cake. Follow someone in the first time, and avoid weekends.
Good move. Check out Whorton also..its nice on the outside anchorage but if its rolly go up the creek in the anchorage and moooring area there.. Great place in the fall when the geese come down at night. Feels like a Hitchcock movie
One note of caution, Denise. You might want to have someone contact Great Oak Landing to check on the status of the bouys outside in the channel for Fairlee Creek. The Coast Guard put out in their aide to navigation update that green 5 and 7 bouys are missing and red 4 is way off station. If your club doesn't know that, they will have a BIG surprise as it makes it extremely difficult to enter the channel. This was accurate as of the week before Memorial Weekend. I do not know if they have been restored as of this date.
Worton Creek is a nice anchorage and there accomodating marina's should you wish to spend one night at dock. Fuel, pump out and ice are available at the marina and there's at least one restaurant. My draft is 5'6" and I had no problem but I'll share some local wisdom provided by a marina resident...the bottom is thickly layered with silt. Sometimes your depth gauge will give you a shallow water reading due to the silt but your boat will easily pass. Not my favorite thing to do but I actually had my depth alarm sounding as I exited the creek at less than high tide, however we never bumped bottom. Had I not been told of the silt I'd have been a nervous wreck.
Re-thinking now... I do think we will try the anchorage there. One of the guys in my YC was telling me how to get in from the bay but I didn't quite retain what he was saying. duh. markers,, bouys.. channel, beach, oh my.
Denise, if you can I'd follow someone in. Preferrably someone with a deeper draft than yours. The channel twists a bit but I don't think it's that bad. I believe it's marked properly. Keep a sharp eye on the depth and if you bump do a quick 180 to get back off.