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Martha's Vineyard Surfcasters
Martha's Vineyard
Surfcasters Association
P.O. Box 3053
Edgartown, MA 02539

July 2nd, Norton Point and Chappy Beach Access Update (Thanks to Chris Kennedy, Superintendent, TTOR)

Jul 6

Written by:
7/6/2016 9:29 AM  RssIcon

Norton Point and Chappy Beach Update
July 2, 2016
Chris Kennedy, Superintendent, TTOR

Beach Access Update

We are now mid-way through the shorebird season and the beaches at Norton Point and Leland Beach are pretty well saturated with terns, plovers, oyster catchers and black skimmers at Norton Point and plovers on Leland. Cape Poge is open from the Dike Bridge to the Windmill House at the Cape Poge Elbow.  

At Norton Point we have approximately 4/10 of a mile of drivable ocean beach at the Katama end. On Leland we found a single plover chick that appeared to be 3 weeks old (they normally fledge in four weeks).  This older chick  that had crossed over from the ocean beach to the bay side on the Wasque Point end of the beach which forced the closure of vehicle access along the Leland bay side trails.  We also have several plover families on the outside of Leland beach which prevented us from opening that up for access.  Of course,Murphy’s Law dictates that we won’t catch a break.  We learned Wednesday evening that another plover nest had unexpectedly hatched on Leland’s bay side beaches close to Wasque Point.  At this point I would say it is safe to say that vehicle access to Wasque Point is unlikely for the next several weeks.  Finally, we have been able to open a small section of beach opposite the Dike Bridge for ocean beach access.  We monitor the status of the chicks on all of our beaches several times a day and will immediately reopen driving access as we are legally able to.

To fish the new moon tides at Wasque fishermen are advised to park at the Wasque Swimming Beach parking lot.  I know, I can hear the groaning but for those who make the trip to the Point it can be very productive.  Staff are trying to get the aluminum stairs back in place adjacent to the Osprey pole at Wasque, which would shave off some of the beach walking,  but the beach at the base of the cliff is extremely narrow.  We will do the best we can to get these stairs in but I don’t want to oversell the idea that we can get these stairs back in place. We typically need 5 to 6 feet of beach at the base of the cliff to get these stairs secured at the top of the cliff and the base of the cliff.  We have also received positive news from the Conservation Commission.  They have approved our application to replace the stairs at Wasque Point.  The aluminum beach stairs are currently being built in Maine and we are awaiting an expected completion date from the manufacturer of these custom stairs.

We will be sure to pass along updates as things change.  Trust us…things will get better from this point.

Chris 

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