Great Spots to Sail in New York and New England

We are always talking about boating in places like Newport, Boston and Long Island Sound; so today’s guest post by Tom Rokins is a welcome reprieve, with a look at a few Northeast boating hotspots where we wish we could spend more time…

Finger Lakes from Space

New York’s Finger Lakes region is seen in this December 2004 image from the International Space Station. Image Credit: NASA

If you live in the north east part of the United States, you should count yourself lucky – New England and New York are home to some pretty special areas for sailing.

You won’t have to go too far out of your way to find a great new place to take to the waters, as there is plenty of choice practically on your doorstep. However, if you’re feeling stuck for a bit of inspiration, we’re here to help out.
For this summer, here is a compact list of some of our favourite places to sail in those seven lovely states.

New York – The Finger Lakes
The Finger Lakes might seem like an odd name if you’re unfamiliar with them, but you’d soon understand why they’re called that if you were to see them from above. Native American legend states that they were created by the Great Spirit, using his fingertips, and we are lucky that his fingers were large enough to create such amazing waters.

There are 11 lakes to take your pick from here, covering an area roughly the size of New Jersey, and you’re free to sail from May to October. The state parks offer hard ramps, trailer parking and pumpout stations, and with 650 miles of shoreline, you’re not going to get bored!

Make sure you take a trip along the Cayuga Wine Trail!

Maine – Penobscot Bay
Maine’s largest bay, Penobscot has a lot of variety – there are towns, coves, and inlets aplenty along this 40 mile stretch.

A wise person would start off at Rockland’s Knight Marine Service, as it can offer you a wide range of useful amenities, such as good parking spots, and mooring, storage and repairs. If you’ve been out on the water for a while, you’ll want to make good use of their shower and laundry facilities!

Come in August – you don’t want to miss the Maine Lobster Festival or the Maine Boats, Homes & Harbors Show!

New Hampshire – Lake Winnipesaukee
Arguably the most popular lake in all New Hampshire, you’ll soon see why it’s so beloved when you arrive. It’s the largest NH lake, covering over 70 square miles, meaning there’s crystal clear water stretching as far as the eye can see. Don’t worry about getting stranded though – there’s plenty of lifeboats and safety equipment to save you!

There are more than 250 islands in the lake, and half of these are smaller than a quarter-acre, meaning you’ll have a lot of choice in where you’re sailing and what you’ll see. Kids will love The Weirs Beach and the nearby Logs of Fun Arcade and Daytona Fun Park, complete with go karts, a high ropes course, mini golf and batting cages!

If you are at all interested in motorcycles, you should make sure to visit in June. This is when Laconia hosts its annual Bike Week, when thousands of bikers descend on the town for rallies, live music, and a charity bike ride.