Upper Casco Bay

Harpswell, Maine

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A chain of beautiful islands with slate cliffs stand over pocket beaches and plenty of public access, usually more sheltered than Casco Bay’s outer islands. Spruce and fir forests dominate Whaleboat’s “bow” and “stern” hills on either end. Once across the channel, head for the central saddle’s shrubby, rolling meadows where there are several easy landing areas and a campsite, near the small patch of salt marsh. If you poke around the island’s interior you might come across a cellar hole or stone walls, remnants of the island’s residents, the last of whom left around 1906. The south end of the island has steep cliffs along its shore and is likely to have somewhat rougher seas, due to its exposure. If you’re looking for more docile conditions, head around the north end. Below the light tower at the southwest end you not only get a view down the length of Whaleboat Island, but out to the rest of Casco Bay as well. Another, more sheltered campsite is tucked into the forest on the island’s northwest side. From here, head across the channel to Little Whaleboat Island.
AMC's Best Sea Kayaking in New England

DESCRIPTION FROM:

AMC's Best Sea Kayaking in New England

by Michael Daugherty (Falcon Guides)

A chain of beautiful islands with slate cliffs stand over pocket beaches and plenty of public access, usually more sheltered than Casco Bay’s outer islands.

Spruce and fir forests dominate Whaleboat’s “bow” and “stern” hills on either end. Once across the channel, head for the central saddle’s shrubby, rolling meadows where there are several easy landing areas and a campsite, near the small patch of salt marsh. If you poke around the island’s interior you might come across a cellar hole or stone walls, remnants of the island’s residents, the last of whom left around 1906. The south end of the island has steep cliffs along its shore and is likely to have somewhat rougher seas, due to its exposure.

If you’re looking for more docile conditions, head around the north end. Below the light tower at the southwest end you not only get a view down the length of Whaleboat Island, but out to the rest of Casco Bay as well. Another, more sheltered campsite is tucked into the forest on the island’s northwest side. From here, head across the channel to Little Whaleboat Island.

© 2016 Michael Daugherty/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Sea Kayaking
Nearby City: Harpswell
Distance: 11-13 nautical miles
Tidal Information: Average tidal range is 8.9 feet, flooding northeast, ebbing southwest.
Hazards/Cautions: Although the area is more sheltered than Casco Bay’s outer islands, it can still develop some choppy water, especially when the prevailing southwest winds oppose an outgoing tide.
Season: Year-round
Local Maps: NOAA chart #13290; Maptech #73; Waterproof Chart #101E
Driving Directions: Directions to Upper Casco Bay

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Apr 2018