Is using a paddle cheating?


Active Member
Hi Chauncy...

I got on Google Earth and checked out the locations you were talking about. Quinsigamond, Hopkinton State Park, Ashland State Park, Lake Maspenock. And in doing so I discovered that you live/sail not that far from where I grew up and sailed extensively. That was on the coast of the South Shore... including Hingham, Hull, Cohasset and Scituate. So I know the sailing weather in your neck of the woods quite well. Particularly in the summer.

With summer sailing weather in your area in mind, here's some advice I'd like to offer you. Take the extra time it requires to drive to a body of water that will give you the best sailing conditions. For example, out here in California, my sailing buddies and I think nothing of driving 50 minutes one way to Tomales Bay, and hour and five minutes to Cuttings Wharf and an hour and a half to Benicia. Ie, depending on the wind forecast, we go to where the sailing conditions will be the best. And getting stuck in late afternoon San Francisco Bay Area traffic can sometimes mean a 2+ hour long trip, one way, on the way back home. But it's worth it when you score a great sailing day.

And for the area you live in the primary characteristic... by far... that will give you the best sailing conditions is going to the largest body of water you can find. So, what about Lake Chaubunagungamaug (Lake Webster)?

It's quite large, they allow sailboats (I've seen YouTube videos), it has 2 boat ramps and there's even a Lake Webster Sailing Association. But the main thing is it's big. And that will give you the smoothest winds. Ie, at the same moment on any given day, Lake Webster will have smoother winds than Quinsigamond, Hopkinton State Park, Ashland State Park and Lake Maspenock.

And with the Lake Webster Sailing Association, you may even find fellow Sunfish sailors to sail with.


- Andy
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Webster Sailing Assn is the club where I sail. I checked our guest policy yesterday and I can bring a guest once or twice, but I need to be 100% sure they can make the 6 or 7 fast tacks through the fleet of Mariners/Daysailors to get out of the narrow cove. Membership is kinda fussy at our club as it requires a homeowners insurance and a full sized boat with a jib to even be considered. Only one guy under 40 has ever been let in and at 50 yrs old, I'm the second youngest "kid" in the club.
If Chauncy is interested in the club, I can give him the inside in scoop in person. I do sail some local lakes from time to time.

The town ramp at Memorial Beach is $50 per day and the DCR ramp is 12 jet skis and 5 muscle boats circling to get in one of the 8 parking spots.


Active Member
Hi Eddie E...

Thanks for all those details. Do you suppose there is some spot along that 17 mile long lake shore where a simple dolly could be used to launch a Sunfish from a grassy area in a park or something like that? Or even a private owner where one discovers a Sunfish tied to a dock or pulled up on the shore. It seems that Lake Webster is by far the best body of water around.
The town ramp at Memorial Beach is $50 per day
Just so I'm sure that wasn't a typo, $50 PER DAY?!?!


- Andy
Yes, you read that correctly, Non- resident boat ramp is $50 per day. The local state parks (Hopkinton/ Cochituate) are only $8 per day or $60 for the whole year.
That is my best guess as well. The City of Worcester is just North of the lake and it's a Mecca for crack heads. Some towns between the two have been where they put dry houses for the above crack heads when they get out of rehab.


Well-Known Member
Do you have a boat dolly or the ability to lift the boat over a 2' wall?
Y'know, though I hate to mention it, when "the wind is wrong" to get your Sunfish out of that cove, you could cheaply buy a Snark sailboat, and launch that Snark over that 2-foot wall. :cool:

:eek: (No, not launching this Snark!)

Thread starter #48
That's good advice about driving to a lake more worthwhile for better winds. I do plan to go check out other areas. For now I'm a little hesitant because i have almost no experience. I'd like to get a little more comfortable and experienced at my local lake first where there is almost no other traffic to avoid before i go to a bigger lake or take long drives. I still haven't sailed in anything above 8mph either. I've only gone 4 times so far this season, and maybe 1-2 times in my life before that. Not sure how many times it will take to feel like i know what I'm doing. Maybe 10 total? I think I should at least sail in 12-15mph winds once or twice before venturing out to far away areas. Lake Webster does look great by the way. Thanks for the tip.