Rockport to Thacher Island

Rockport, Massachusetts 1966

Rockport to Thacher Island

Rockport to Thacher Island Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"Less than a mile off Rockport, Thacher, the 50-acre rockbound island marked by its twin light stone towers, has both history and nature in abundance. The good news is that in 2000, the Coast Guard replaced the wood landing ramp wiped out in 1998’s Perfect Storm; after a five-year hiatus it is now possible to land on the island again. Boardwalks and railways crisscross the island’s interior.

A well-worn path leads both to the north and to the south parts of the island. If you visit in summer, you can use this path. In June, the island’s lush plant life—pink morning glories, beach rose, and blackberries— blooms effusively. Thousands of fuzzy baby gulls make their parents aggressive and territorial. Some people hike the island with a kayak paddle overhead to ward off marauding parents."

Rockport to Thacher Island Trip Reports

4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars
icon1 Total
4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars
This was a great paddle for our maiden voyage in our new tandem kayak (which was designed more for lakes and calm seas than for true ocean kayaking and that we didn't have a spray skirt for). On a calm day with small waves, this is an easy paddle, but we could see how it could turn difficult on a rough day.

We decided not to put in at the designated place, because we stayed at The Captains House (Bed & Breakfast) in Rockport and were able to put in by walking the boat ~100 yards down the road to Gap Head cove (there's no parking there). If you launch from Gap Head cove, be sure to put in about halfway between low and high tide, otherwise, you have to walk through muck & seaweed that is VERY slippery.

It was great that the trip mentioned that there is no drinking water on the island - definitely bring your own. Plan an hour or so to explore the island - you can go up the North lighthouse and the view from South Bluff is really nice. In the summer, chat with the people who are on monthly duty (volunteer by lottery), as you can learn a lot about the island from them. Watch out for the dive-bombing seagulls on the island if you go from July - August, as they have nests and young (very cute) at that time and are very protective!

Rockport to Thacher Island Photos

Show off your photography skills ... post your pics of this trail!

Trail Information

Nearby City
Day Trip
Best spring through fall
NOAA #13274 at 1:40,000
Local Maps

Trail Log