The Westerly Harbor Commission in Westerly, Rhode Island, is once again considering placing restrictions on the number of boats that can anchor inside of Napatree Point, off Watch Hill. The restrictions could require the use of designated guest moorings in a defined and strictly enforced anchorage area, as well as limitations on rafting.
The protected Napatree Point area is extremely popular among boaters, who often anchor or raft offshore and access the beach by kayak or canoe, or by wading ashore.
While public-access advocates are concerned over any sort of restrictions, local shellfishermen and environmentalists say that overcrowding of the anchorage has led to an increase in pollution, particularly bacteria that may be a factor in Little Narragansett Bay shellfishing closures.
The boating public is urged to attend any upcoming Harbor Commission meetings and voice their opinions. We will try to keep you posted on these via BoatingLocal.
To read more about Napatree and Watch Hill, see our destination feature on this area: