Provincetown, ma

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by timemachine, Dec 11, 2017.

  1. timemachine

    timemachine Member SILVER Sponsor

    385
    Jul 11, 2009
    Watch Hill, RI
    2005 48 Sundancer
    Cummins 530HO
    i venture from Long Island to Nantucket but this summer planning on running thru canal to Provincetown. I plan to go with ride thru canal and didn’t know what to expect on Cape Cod Sound. Thinking of staying 3-4nights then working my way to Nantucket.
     
  2. be_prepared

    be_prepared Member GOLD Sponsor

    196
    Oct 12, 2015
    Mattapoisett, MA
    2002 Sea Ray Sundancer 340DA
    Twin Mercruiser Horizon 8.1 inboards
    One tip on the transit...

    When you're planning your trips through the ditch, the current runs East from Buzzards Bay to Cape Cod Bay on the flood tide and obviously west on the ebb. Making your way from Buzzards Bay towards P-town, you probably want to go with the flood tide, and it'll be an easier trip.
    When returning from Cape Cod Bay to Buzzards Bay, you might think the opposite, and look for an ebb tide to ride through, but I would suggest you try for slack tide when coming out of the canal on a typical day. When the ebb flow is coming out of the canal, and the typical southeast breeze is coming up Buzzards Bay, funneling the water up there, you can get huge standing waves at the mouth of the canal along the Stoney Point Dike that are just plain nasty.

    Something we dealt with a couple of times last summer in Cape Cod Bay was fog, so be sure that you have a nice course plotted, are comfortable running (slow) with the radar, sound your signals, and listen. Fog's not very frequent, but when it hits it can be white out.

    On a more normal nice day, it's a great ride from the end of the canal to P-Town. Cape Cod to the east and Southeastern Mass to the West really shelter the bay. Sometimes we are getting beat up in Buzzards Bay and it's dead flat calm when we get into Cap Cod Bay. You can venture a little farther north from Provincetown and often see whales not too far from land, just look for the whale watch boats that come out of Boston and Plymouth to find the whales. You can often find the watch boats on your chartplotter if you have it linked to your DSC radio. Check for boats like "Tails of the Sea". Give them plenty of space, better to view with binoculars than get too close. There are big whale watch cats that come out of Boston from the New England Aquarium. They can lead you to the whales also, just give them a wide berth.

    Provincetown Marina was renovated about a year ago, expanded dock space, new electrical service... they were under new management starting in 2016.

    Hope you have a great trip!
     
    shiverme2001 likes this.
  3. hottoddie

    hottoddie Well-Known Member

    Jan 11, 2012
    Boston/Cape Cod
    1986 Sea Ray 390 Express
    Garmin 4212 Chartplotter
    Garmin 24 HD Radar
    Garmin GSD 22 Sounder
    Garm
    454 Crusaders
    Good advice about Buzzard Bay and the canal. As far as finding whales use an app on your phone such as "Find Ship". Look for the "Dolphin" fleet of boats on the app. I used the app in August and had 2 1/2 hours of the best whale watching you could ever imagine.
     
  4. timemachine

    timemachine Member SILVER Sponsor

    385
    Jul 11, 2009
    Watch Hill, RI
    2005 48 Sundancer
    Cummins 530HO
    All great advice. I’m looking forward to adding a new destination to my list.
     
  5. katricol

    katricol Active Member SILVER Sponsor

    Mar 4, 2008
    LONG ISLAND SOUND
    2000 540DA
    CAT 3196 660 HP
    canal speed limit is 10 mph
     
  6. hottoddie

    hottoddie Well-Known Member

    Jan 11, 2012
    Boston/Cape Cod
    1986 Sea Ray 390 Express
    Garmin 4212 Chartplotter
    Garmin 24 HD Radar
    Garmin GSD 22 Sounder
    Garm
    454 Crusaders

    If you are traveling against the tide at max flow it can reach 7mph. If you maintain 10mph water speed it will take you 2 hours to transit the canal. It has taken me as long as 1 1/2hrs and as little as 20 minutes. It can be flat calm or full of 3-4ft standing waves. always something new in the canal. Enjoy.
     
  7. swaterhouse

    swaterhouse Member GOLD Sponsor

    293
    Jan 7, 2015
    Mattapoisett, MA
    2007 Sundancer 44
    Cummins QSC 8.3
    There are actually transit time minimum and maximum in the canal. If you plan on 45 minutes from the Maritime Academy (Buzzards Bay Side) to the Sandwich Marina you're well within the limit. I would say if you are doing it in less than 30 you are at risk for a rendezvous with the patrol boats unless you're in a small boat with minimal wake.

    Biggest thing to be mindful of when running against the tide is your wake. Last summer we took 12" of water over our bow from a jerk in an 80 yacht hauling butt against the tide. I called the patrol to report it since it ripped the canvas off from on top of my windshield and their response was - we saw and were on it. They have radar and cameras the entire length.
     
    shiverme2001 likes this.
  8. timemachine

    timemachine Member SILVER Sponsor

    385
    Jul 11, 2009
    Watch Hill, RI
    2005 48 Sundancer
    Cummins 530HO
    I’m timing trip to in with tides both directions.
     
  9. Alex F

    Alex F Active Member SILVER Sponsor

    Nov 14, 2006
    East Coast
    2005 420DB with AB 11 DLX Tender, Raymarine Dual E120 MFD/Radar/XMWeather, ST7001 A/P, AIS, SeaLift
    T-Cummins 450Cs Straight-Drives, 9KW Onan Generator, 40HP Yamaha for tender.
    Just keep very close eye on prevailing SW winds on your way back home, entering BB after the canal. Anything above 15kts out of W-SW, will give you a lesson of a lifetime. Take my advice and wait for better conditions.
     
    sdarc likes this.
  10. swaterhouse

    swaterhouse Member GOLD Sponsor

    293
    Jan 7, 2015
    Mattapoisett, MA
    2007 Sundancer 44
    Cummins QSC 8.3
    I agree with Alex, don't worry about the current being in the direction you're travelling especially when headed back towards buzzards bay and that is time 10 if that puts you in buzzards bay in the afternoon.

    Running with or against the current is likely to vary your transit time by more than 20-30 minutes. We don't bother looking at currents if transiting before noon with predicted winds under 12kts.

    If hitting the return to Buzzards bay in late afternoon with the normal SW 15kt winds your way better off bucking the current and then have just a miserable ride in buzzards bay, then a quick ride through the canal to then get the snot beat out of you the first 5 miles of the bay.
     
  11. Nick70

    Nick70 Member

    96
    Apr 20, 2016
    New England
    2009 Sea Ray Sundancer 330/350
    Twin 496's
    BRAVO III Sea core
    Garmin radar/gps
    8.1L's w/Bravo III Sea Core
    I timed it correctly and took the canal west on the ebb, and it was still a nasty witches brew. Massive eddys, constant 2-4' waves..in the canal! It was my first time and was pretty surprised. Then of course buzzards bay tested us some more on the way to Cuttyhunk.
    Three days later though, on the way back home in the morning, leaving from Oak Bluffs, the whole ride was smooth, and fast. Pretty much glass through Woods Hole, BB, and the canal...oh wow. I couldn't help myself. The current was with us, it was smooth. We FLEW. I knew there was a speed limit but being early in the AM, there was very little traffic. I burned through there 24-28 kts (Gps)and didn't even gain on anyone lol. We all were just ripping through the canal. Such a difference from the previous experience.
    Cape cod bay to Boston was more of the same.
    We slowed down and drifted a few min to scarf down some cold pizza, then finished our rip back home.
    I love be bopping around the harbor islands, hitting restaurants, anchoring and tying off at worlds end etc..
    But there is nothing like cruising in open water to your next destination together.
    It's all I think about all year round
     
  12. Gofirstclass

    Gofirstclass Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 20, 2010
    Tri Cities, WA
    1995 550 Sedan Bridge,
    2010 Boston Whaler 130 Super Sport,
    1981 Boston Whaler 130 Sport,
    CAT 3406C's, 580hp.
    When you get to P-town watch out for the boys standing on the street corners. They're tour guides but I don't think you'd like the path they might try to lead you down.
     
    Nick70 likes this.

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