Monomoy Islands

Chatham, Massachusetts

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Thousands of seals and birds pack onto miles of sandy beaches here. The launch: A 100-foot carry from the causeway via any one of several paths to the very shallow water. Shifting sand and vast shallow flats can make navigation tricky, especially at lower tides; check at Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge headquarters for updates, and allow plenty of time. Open ocean conditions occur outside the bar; stop at Chatham Light to assess. Strong currents occur around breaches and off Montgomery Point. In recent years, the increased population of gray seals has drawn more sharks to the area.
AMC's Best Sea Kayaking in New England

DESCRIPTION FROM:

AMC's Best Sea Kayaking in New England

by Michael Daugherty (Falcon Guides)

Thousands of seals and birds pack onto miles of sandy beaches here. The launch: A 100-foot carry from the causeway via any one of several paths to the very shallow water. Shifting sand and vast shallow flats can make navigation tricky, especially at lower tides; check at Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge headquarters for updates, and allow plenty of time.

Open ocean conditions occur outside the bar; stop at Chatham Light to assess. Strong currents occur around breaches and off Montgomery Point. In recent years, the increased population of gray seals has drawn more sharks to the area.

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

Activity Type: Sea Kayaking
Nearby City: Chatham
Distance: 17 nautical miles
Tidal Information: Mean tidal range is 5.77 feet in Chatham. Vast areas flatout at lower tides; plan on paddling over them with adequate water. Two very different currents—both averaging about 2 knots at their fastest—converge at Monomoy Point and may produce very dangerous conditions. Just west of the point the flood moves south, while current to the south in Pollock Rip Channel floods northeast. If you’re going around the point, plan for slack tide.
Hazards/Cautions: Shifting sand and vast shallow flats can make navigation tricky, especially at lower tides; check at Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge headquarters for updates, and allow plenty of time. Open ocean conditions occur outside the bar; stop at Chatham Light to assess. Strong currents occur around breaches and off Monomoy Point. In recent years, the increased population of gray seals has drawn more sharks to the area.
Season: Year-round
Local Maps: NOAA charts #13248 and #13244; Waterproof Chart #64; Google Earth. Due to the dynamic nature of Monomoy’s shifting sands, it is prudent to rely more on local knowledge. Staff at the Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge headquarters can provide up-to-date information.
Driving Directions: Directions to Monomoy Islands

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Apr 2018