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Harbor Notes

Approaches to Boston and Winthrop Harbors
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Approaches to Boston and Winthrop Harbor


There are two entrance’s to Boston Harbor,(From the north) to the North there is the North Channel and the South Channel.The preferred Channel would be the North Channel. Look for Graves Light, stay about ¼ mile to the west where you will find the NC Buoy and the entrance to the North Channel. Once at Deer Island light just around the light to the Presidents Roads Channel and you are in Boston.Winthrop Harbor is to the north, to get into Winthrop Harbor once you round Deer Island Light head up 30 degrees, go across the Anchorage “A” (large ship anchorage) head towards the “5” lighted Buoy (we call it the bug light).Straight ahead you will see Snake Island. At the lighted green day mark (locally called the “Dolphin”, take the channel to the right #(be sure to keep the next red buoy to the starboard side the channel gets very narrow here and either side is very shallow)  to The Winthrop Yacht Club and Crystal Cove Marina (full service fuel dock). Take the channel to the left to find Cottage Park Yacht Club, Pleasant Park Yacht Club (gas only) and East Boston Yacht Club.


To enter Boston from the south round Cohasset Light (known as the “1, 4, 3” or the “I love you”light), go to Harding’s ledge buoy (keep it to port) then on to the channel known as Nantasket Roads keeping Boston Light on your starboard side. You will then enter The Narrows channel, keep Georges and Gallops Island to your Port and Lovels to Starboard. You will see a large brick day mark known as Nixes Mate keeping it to Port you will enter Presidents Roads Channel.  Follow the instructions above to enter Boston or Winthrop.


It is advisable to have a good detailed chart plotter or paper charts with you.  The Charts for Boston Harbor,like all NOAA charts, are very detailed and easy to follow. The channels are also easy to follow and I cannot remember ever seeing shoaling reported in the channels but I am sure that it could happen, so make sure to stay in all the channels. The bottom is mostly hard mud but there are rocks all over ou side the channels, these obstructions are also well marked on paper and visually.


Please note that I have not mentioned or named many aids to navigation numbers. These directions are to help guide you to your destination not to plot it for you, there is nothing like prudent navigation by the captain. The Coast Guard changes numbers and updates the aids quite often so I chose to give direction and not buoy to buoy navigation..


Enjoy Boston, it is a great harbor to explore and the shore side activities are numerous.
For historical information on Boston Harbor check out Edward Rowe Snow's books at ttp://, his books are available on
Leo Corsetti
T-33 Satisfaction
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