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Annapolis Mooring Rant - AYC bite me


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For various reasons I was quite late getting to Annapolis for the 4th. I held out no realistic expectation of getting a mooring and once in radio range the harbormaster confirmed they were 100% occupied. This actually kind of sucks because the anchorage has shitty holding and is very exposed or you can go way the hell up Spa Creek and not see much of the fireworks.

We decided to take a chance anyway and go under the bridge and up Spa Creek just in case and what did I find but 6 or so moorings up there with covers on them RESERVED AYC ONLY :angry::angry: What The Actual Fuck!!!!! These moorings have been first-come-first-serve for as long as they have been there and still are according to the harbormaster website. We lucked out because someone wanted to get closer to the fireworks barge and left and we snagged their mooring about 0.8 seconds after they got off it, but to make matters ever worse only 2 out of the 6 moorings ever got used! I would love to know how a private club managed to convert a scarce public resource to their own property and then didn't even USE IT  :angry:

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2 minutes ago, kent_island_sailor said:

I would love to know how a private club managed to convert a scarce public resource to their own property and then didn't even USE IT

Public resources being converted to private property is called capitalism.  Other socio-economic models are available.

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The OP was one of the most sincere brutal bitch outs I have seen on Sailing Anarchy that was not lessened by overuse of disrespectful language. 
 

I don’t mean the no cussing part. I mean he didn’t ask what the fuck kind of asshole idiot either asked for it approved the situation. 
 

Considering the obviously expressed passion of the writer, he absolutely was diplomatic as anyone could ask. 

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Warning, thread drifth. Something similar happens at many campgrounds around the country on busy weekends. Folks book a site and then don't turn up and can't be bothered to cancel. Usually you can't get into the campground without a reservation so it is a catch-22, but sometimes you can. Then I just cruise through till I find an empty site around 10PM, just before quiet hour, and sleep in my van. Only once in about 10 such events did someone actually turn up so I simply say very sorry and move to another empty site.

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39 minutes ago, TheDragon said:

Warning, thread drifth. Something similar happens at many campgrounds around the country on busy weekends. Folks book a site and then don't turn up and can't be bothered to cancel. Usually you can't get into the campground without a reservation so it is a catch-22, but sometimes you can. Then I just cruise through till I find an empty site around 10PM, just before quiet hour, and sleep in my van. Only once in about 10 such events did someone actually turn up so I simply say very sorry and move to another empty site.

Oddly enough a couple AYC boats were not even on the AYC reserved moorings, so they essentially were taking TWO spots :rolleyes:

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So next time just take one of their "reserved" moorings, and apologize if they all turn up and want it back. With rare exceptions in life it is better to ask for forgiveness than permission. Unless what you are doing is a criminal offense likely to lead to a felony conviction, that is.

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Is it possible AYC either owns or has a lease on those moorings?

I can think of a few clubs that have this arrangement with their respective harbor masters.

Either way, if it was later in the evening, I would have used it and moved first thing in the morning. Not really the right thing to do, but if I was in a pinch....

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Our club has installed a number of guest moorings in popular anchorage spots for use by club members. We own the tackle and block and maintain the mooring.

Over the years I had a few discussions with non-club members about use of the moorings. Never anything ugly, but usually they wondered why it was a private mooring? (These discussions only happened when they were all being used, and one was being occupied by a non-club member, and a club member (me) wanted to use it). 

Perhaps, as suggested, the club has taken over ownership and/or maintenance of these moorings. It isn’t cheap to keep a mooring in tip top shape.
 

 

 

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17 hours ago, kent_island_sailor said:

For various reasons I was quite late getting to Annapolis for the 4th. I held out no realistic expectation of getting a mooring and once in radio range the harbormaster confirmed they were 100% occupied. This actually kind of sucks because the anchorage has shitty holding and is very exposed or you can go way the hell up Spa Creek and not see much of the fireworks.

We decided to take a chance anyway and go under the bridge and up Spa Creek just in case and what did I find but 6 or so moorings up there with covers on them RESERVED AYC ONLY :angry::angry: What The Actual Fuck!!!!! These moorings have been first-come-first-serve for as long as they have been there and still are according to the harbormaster website. We lucked out because someone wanted to get closer to the fireworks barge and left and we snagged their mooring about 0.8 seconds after they got off it, but to make matters ever worse only 2 out of the 6 moorings ever got used! I would love to know how a private club managed to convert a scarce public resource to their own property and then didn't even USE IT  :angry:

I suspect, as OneWorld suggested, that AYC likely leased those moorings for the season.  Given that COVID has resulted in a boat buying spree, it's not too far a stretch to think all of AYC's slips are totally full, and the club was looking for a way to make moorings available to other clubs that enjoy reciprocal privileges' esp. if they are totally out of slip/dock space...

The bigger question might be what are the rules/laws governing how long a person/entity can reserve a mooring? and does the mooring have to be "rented' by an individual, or can an entity (like AYC) rent them? 

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1 hour ago, OneWorldSailing said:

Is it possible AYC either owns or has a lease on those moorings?

I can think of a few clubs that have this arrangement with their respective harbor masters.

Either way, if it was later in the evening, I would have used it and moved first thing in the morning. Not really the right thing to do, but if I was in a pinch....

They definitely do not own them, they are city moorings that have been there forever. The "AYC Reserved" covers came off at some point yesterday too. I have been using those moorings since the time they were first put down and I have NEVER seen anything like this before. The worst part of the whole thing besides for taking over a public taxpayer funded resource was they only used 2 out of the 6 and had AYC boats on other moorings that presumably could have been on the reserved ones. This is kind of like the local BMW club renting the left lane of I-95 during rush hour and then not even driving on it :rolleyes:

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1 hour ago, Crash said:

I suspect, as OneWorld suggested, that AYC likely leased those moorings for the season.  Given that COVID has resulted in a boat buying spree, it's not too far a stretch to think all of AYC's slips are totally full, and the club was looking for a way to make moorings available to other clubs that enjoy reciprocal privileges' esp. if they are totally out of slip/dock space...

The bigger question might be what are the rules/laws governing how long a person/entity can reserve a mooring? and does the mooring have to be "rented' by an individual, or can an entity (like AYC) rent them? 

The rental moorings are reserved by you being there. If you leave and don't leave a dinghy on the line anyone is free to grab it and it isn't yours at that point.

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Apparently, the moorings are leased by the Club from Friday at Noon, until Monday at Noon.  They are not for overnight use unless approved by the Club due to transient slips being full, they are for use of members while at the Club using the facilities.

While I hear you, and feel your pain, chances are that due to your late arrival, they may have been full even if AYC didn't have them leased on a holiday weekend. I think the gripe really should be against the Harbor Master allowing it, not that the Club found someone willing to charge them for it.

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Lack of access is what has been the #1 killer of "non-trailerable" sail boats for years now.  In Charleston you can get a 30' boat slip for $100,000.00.  Sure, go buy a $12,000 30 4knt shit box and stick it in a 6 figure slip.... Ain't happening.

US sAiling thinks promoting LBGTQ is gonna increase participation and boat ownership.  I don't think that's been an issue in our sport for some time now, but maybe that's just me.  Unfortunately they continue to grasp at straws because the reality is there's just not much they can do to stop the slide.  Public access getting gobbled up by development, slip prices are nuts and YC's just get more expensive to cover the increasing costs of facility management.  Capitalism rules..... 

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4 hours ago, trimfast said:

Apparently, the moorings are leased by the Club from Friday at Noon, until Monday at Noon.  They are not for overnight use unless approved by the Club due to transient slips being full, they are for use of members while at the Club using the facilities.

While I hear you, and feel your pain, chances are that due to your late arrival, they may have been full even if AYC didn't have them leased on a holiday weekend. I think the gripe really should be against the Harbor Master allowing it, not that the Club found someone willing to charge them for it.

Last I remember, the club gives complimentary access to Annapolis and Maryland state/federal politicians for the bar, restaurant, etc.

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5 hours ago, trimfast said:

Apparently, the moorings are leased by the Club from Friday at Noon, until Monday at Noon.  They are not for overnight use unless approved by the Club due to transient slips being full, they are for use of members while at the Club using the facilities.

While I hear you, and feel your pain, chances are that due to your late arrival, they may have been full even if AYC didn't have them leased on a holiday weekend. I think the gripe really should be against the Harbor Master allowing it, not that the Club found someone willing to charge them for it.

I actually DID get a mooring to my great surprise, so my bitch was not about that, it was about a very scarce and in-demand taxpayer funded public resource being leased to a private club *and not even used*.

What happens when EYC wants 6 more and SSA wants 6 more and RBSA wants 6 more and so on?

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1 minute ago, kent_island_sailor said:

I actually DID get a mooring to my great surprise, so my bitch was not about that, it was about a very scarce and in-demand taxpayer funded public resource being leased to a private club *and not even used*.

What happens when EYC wants 6 more and SSA wants 6 more and RBSA wants 6 more and so on?

get a life

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24 minutes ago, Salona said:

Could always set an anchor, like the 200+ other boats did...

For the 500th time, this is not about that. This issue did not affect me, I got a spot. This is about a private club taking over public facilities. What will happen when the next club wants some and the next and the next................................

 

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I share Kent Island Sailor's annoyance. 
 

It might annoy me less if the Harbormaster would let us normal people reserve a mooring by paying in advance, but they don't; first come, first serve only for us regular slugs. 

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3 hours ago, Salona said:

Could always set an anchor, like the 200+ other boats did...

Anchorage in Annapolis outer harbor is notorious for poor holding.  On a popular weekend night like 4th of July, its about as calm as a washing machine.  No thanks!!!

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 I was just making the same observation in Lake Ogleton. Great nearby place in Annapolis. In MD waters, anyone can drop a mooring ball and it is theirs to use whenever they want. There are tons of new mooring balls, all of which are private and empty. The sucky part is that you look like the ass when you “borrow” a private mooring ball. But the good anchorage space is now filled with empty moorings. These mooring ball owners use the space a handful of times a year. It’s great that they invested money but it takes away public space. They didn’t pay the public for the space. If they kept a boat on it, cool. 

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23 minutes ago, josehoya said:

 I was just making the same observation in Lake Ogleton. Great nearby place in Annapolis. In MD waters, anyone can drop a mooring ball and it is theirs to use whenever they want. There are tons of new mooring balls, all of which are private and empty. The sucky part is that you look like the ass when you “borrow” a private mooring ball. But the good anchorage space is now filled with empty moorings. These mooring ball owners use the space a handful of times a year. It’s great that they invested money but it takes away public space. They didn’t pay the public for the space. If they kept a boat on it, cool. 

won't be long before you could walk across Ogleton from ball to ball

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15 hours ago, kent_island_sailor said:

I actually DID get a mooring to my great surprise, so my bitch was not about that, it was about a very scarce and in-demand taxpayer funded public resource being leased to a private club *and not even used*.

What happens when EYC wants 6 more and SSA wants 6 more and RBSA wants 6 more and so on?

Bird in hand is worth 2 in the bush, especially to a small city govt.  If AYC is willing to pay up front to reserve those moorings, and the city is willing to accept that payment, that's how it works.  

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59 minutes ago, josehoya said:

 I was just making the same observation in Lake Ogleton. Great nearby place in Annapolis. In MD waters, anyone can drop a mooring ball and it is theirs to use whenever they want. There are tons of new mooring balls, all of which are private and empty. The sucky part is that you look like the ass when you “borrow” a private mooring ball. But the good anchorage space is now filled with empty moorings. These mooring ball owners use the space a handful of times a year. It’s great that they invested money but it takes away public space. They didn’t pay the public for the space. If they kept a boat on it, cool. 

Yes, MD needs to charge annual fees or otherwise limit the mooring balls. 

The worst ones are actually those in regular use, because those boats are generally abandoned for years until they they sink or break free.

In the West River's "private" mooring field, just in the last year probably a half dozen have broken free and washed up on shore or into the Pirates Cove marina, damaging docks & other boats.  DNR generally won't do anything about the derelicts either, because they don't want to pay the cost of disposal.

 

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19 minutes ago, bgytr said:

Bird in hand is worth 2 in the bush, especially to a small city govt.  If AYC is willing to pay up front to reserve those moorings, and the city is willing to accept that payment, that's how it works.  

Except it doesn't work that way. There is no mechanism to reserve moorings for anyone but AYC and the odds they won't get used on summer weekends is quite low. If Annapolis allowed those moorings to be leased long term *every single one* would be snapped up before the day was out and there would be no more public moorings.

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9 minutes ago, Salona said:

Yes, MD needs to charge annual fees or otherwise limit the mooring balls. 

The worst ones are actually those in regular use, because those boats are generally abandoned for years until they they sink or break free.

In the West River's "private" mooring field, just in the last year probably a half dozen have broken free and washed up on shore or into the Pirates Cove marina, damaging docks & other boats.  DNR generally won't do anything about the derelicts either, because they don't want to pay the cost of disposal.

 

This times a million!

I would like to see a 2 year sticker system where the moorings are free to be taken over or removed if the sticker is out of date. I sort-of disagree about the worst ones, abandoned moorings are a pain because they take space away from anchoring or putting in other moorings and usually no one would trust them enough to use them. The ones with actual boats are maybe a step ahead of abandoned boats on anchors. Maybe.

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33 minutes ago, kent_island_sailor said:

Except it doesn't work that way. There is no mechanism to reserve moorings for anyone but AYC and the odds they won't get used on summer weekends is quite low. If Annapolis allowed those moorings to be leased long term *every single one* would be snapped up before the day was out and there would be no more public moorings.

Not intending to be confrontational.. But it did work that way because that's exactly what happened.  AYC leased the balls ahead of time so that was that.

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6 minutes ago, bgytr said:

Not intending to be confrontational.. But it did work that way because that's exactly what happened.  AYC leased the balls ahead of time so that was that.

Well to be fair his point was that John Q Public can't do that.  Its only done apparently as a favor to AYC. 

Now I don't share KIS's level of outrage or concern.  Its a small number of moorings in a less than desirable location and a way for town and office to secure some steady revenue streams.

But there are two sides to this decidedly first world problem.

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Posted (edited)

The harbormaster is getting paid for 6 moorings x 3 days no matter the weather.

One thing to be the 4th of July (The height of the boating season), but early rainy May weekend that is revenue the town would not see. So while they may not be turning a blind eye, maybe the revenue is causing a bit of seasonal glaucoma..  ;<)

This may have been going on for years and usually the spaces are all taken (eg assigned by the club prior to the weekend) and you never would have known.  This year feels like the train yards with lots of banging and squealing brakes as EVERYTHING runs a  bit rough as things return to normal.  Our club ran a 4th of July dinner that we paid for and forgot to order the @#!% beer and band (Oh the humanity..).   So some AYC members did not use them and nobody called the harbormaster to release them.

 

I know of public anchoring areas off an island up North where certain clubs have a couple moorings that belong to the club and are only for club member's use.  They pay for the maintenance and taxes much to the enjoyment of the harbormaster.

 

Finally, AYC does a lot of good in that town and employs many people in their operations.   They are the 800 lb gorilla in town. That is how townie politics work and one is naive to think otherwise.  Never been there, though the Admiral used reciprocal privileges to try out their restaurant last month.  She and a friend were treated very well there.

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52 minutes ago, kent_island_sailor said:

Why are they there? Is it that much of an in-demand location?

No idea, other than it's a pretty good hurricane hole because there's realy no fetch in any one direction for waves to build up.

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5 minutes ago, Foreverslow said:

The harbormaster is getting paid for 6 moorings x 3 days no matter the weather.

One thing to be the 4th of July (The height of the boating season), but early rainy May weekend that is revenue the town would not see. So while they may not be turning a blind eye, maybe the revenue is causing a bit of seasonal glaucoma..  ;<)

This may have been going on for years and usually the spaces are all taken (eg assigned by the club prior to the weekend) and you never would have known.  This year feels like the train yards with lots of banging and squealing brakes as EVERYTHING runs a  bit rough as things return to normal.  Our club ran a 4th of July dinner that we paid for and forgot to order the @#!% beer and band (Oh the humanity..).   So some AYC members did not use them and nobody called the harbormaster to release them.

 

I know of public anchoring areas off an island up North where certain clubs have a couple moorings that belong to the club and are only for club member's use.  They pay for the maintenance and taxes much to the enjoyment of the harbormaster.

 

Finally, AYC does a lot of good in that town and employs many people in their operations.   They are the 800 lb gorilla in town. That is how townie politics work and one is naive to think otherwise.  Never been there, though the Admiral used reciprocal privileges to try out their restaurant last month.  She and a friend were treated very well there.

I very much would have known if it was going on for years. This *maybe* started last year at the earliest, but I doubt it was before this year. Back in the day when we needed a mooring through both boat shows, we showed up early enough to get one and paid the cash to stay there. That was how you used to do it, you had to show up early and eat the cost of being early and you needed an actual boat to do it.

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10 minutes ago, Wess said:

Well to be fair his point was that John Q Public can't do that.  Its only done apparently as a favor to AYC. 

Now I don't share KIS's level of outrage or concern.  Its a small number of moorings in a less than desirable location and a way for town and office to secure some steady revenue streams.

But there are two sides to this decidedly first world problem.

Very much 1st World problems, but it pisses me off thinking of all the times I arrived at 0130 or 0600 to make sure and get a spot, I sure would have loved to reserve one and sleep in. Also note it is 6 now, what happens when it is 12 or 24 or all of them?

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5 minutes ago, kent_island_sailor said:

 Also note it is 6 now, what happens when it is 12 or 24 or all of them?

Likley as long as the rent is being paid,  its just gonna squeeze the weekender out of town to another anchorage/destination where they can spend their money.

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2 hours ago, kent_island_sailor said:

I very much would have known if it was going on for years. This *maybe* started last year at the earliest, but I doubt it was before this year. Back in the day when we needed a mooring through both boat shows, we showed up early enough to get one and paid the cash to stay there. That was how you used to do it, you had to show up early and eat the cost of being early and you needed an actual boat to do it.

You are correct. This started as a trial last year, this is the second year. Every Club in Annapolis has the same issue, not enough slips, or parking spots for members. 

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4 hours ago, bgytr said:

Bird in hand is worth 2 in the bush, especially to a small city govt.  If AYC is willing to pay up front to reserve those moorings, and the city is willing to accept that payment, that's how it works.  

I’d be 100% on-board with that if they let me do the same, but they don’t. I’ve got to do catch as catch can while AYC gets preferential treatment. 

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Comedy Gold - I tried to reserve some moorings for my club. At first the Harbor Master employee denied there was any such thing as reserved moorings, flat out stating there was no such thing. When I asked about the AYC reserved moorings, the employee at first stated that they were AYC moorings. When pressed and after consulting with someone, he finally admitted they were Annapolis city moorings rented to AYC. Well OK, how I reserve some? Where is the form and what does it cost?

"We don't reserve moorings" :lol:

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15 minutes ago, kent_island_sailor said:

Comedy Gold - I tried to reserve some moorings for my club. At first the Harbor Master employee denied there was any such thing as reserved moorings, flat out stating there was no such thing. When I asked about the AYC reserved moorings, the employee at first stated that they were AYC moorings. When pressed and after consulting with someone, he finally admitted they were Annapolis city moorings rented to AYC. Well OK, how I reserve some? Where is the form and what does it cost?

"We don't reserve moorings" :lol:

That's pretty funny. I am sure the Capital Gazette could use a story about the City. You than can ask more questions like, was the Vice Commodore Ed Hartman's representation of a "Restaurant Group" suing County Exec Pittman over dining restrictions really a shadow campaign for AYC to open their doors without restriction?  Then again, the word on the street is he apparently also did say he wanted to turn AYC into something the likes of Augusta National to many members concern. 

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Three questions:

Does the OP belong to the AYC?

How much does it cost to join the club?

Does it matter if one does belong to the club that controls the Annapolis moorings to get a reserved spot?

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12 minutes ago, Black Jack said:

Three questions:

Does the OP belong to the AYC?

How much does it cost to join the club?

Does it matter if one does belong to the club that controls the Annapolis moorings to get a reserved spot?

I am not a member, it is expensive, and yes only AYC members can use the public moorings that AYC somehow managed to get for themselves.

* I think about $15K to get in and $5K a year.

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1 minute ago, kent_island_sailor said:

I am not a member, it is expensive, and yes only AYC members can use the public moorings that AYC somehow managed to get for themselves.

That sucks. But then again they run the show in the harbor and the town other than the USNA. They have for 125 years.

I guess I would need to find a sponsor to join. I also will need to buy a house with a dock. Damn this move sounds more expensive. It might be cheaper to live in Marin.

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4 minutes ago, Black Jack said:

That sucks. But then again they run the show in the harbor and the town other than the USNA. They have for 125 years.

I guess I would need to find a sponsor to join. I also will need to buy a house with a dock. Damn this move sounds more expensive. It might be cheaper to live in Marin.

I am not sure what the reference here is. You surely do not need to be member to live in Annapolis nor to have a boat there. The public moorings are NOT for permanent use and even if the harbormaster let it slide, the daily rate would come out to close to $1,000/month :o

Annapolis is NOT a cheap place to live or keep a boat compared to nearby areas, everyone wants to be there. That said you have EYC and SSA also with slips and quite a few commercial marinas plus if you are an Annapolis resident you can get on the wait list for a permanent mooring. These are around $1K/year I think. Many of us pay 1/2 to 1/4 the going Annapolis rates by living one or two rivers over or on the other side of the Bay. There are places you can just put your own mooring in for "free" except for the cost of the gear if you can manage a place for the dinghy.

We do have people that just plop down an anchor somewhere in Annapolis and seemingly never move, but you can't be sure your spot will still be there if you leave for a sail and come back.

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On 7/5/2021 at 4:52 PM, kent_island_sailor said:

For various reasons I was quite late getting to Annapolis for the 4th. I held out no realistic expectation of getting a mooring and once in radio range the harbormaster confirmed they were 100% occupied. This actually kind of sucks because the anchorage has shitty holding and is very exposed or you can go way the hell up Spa Creek and not see much of the fireworks.

We decided to take a chance anyway and go under the bridge and up Spa Creek just in case and what did I find but 6 or so moorings up there with covers on them RESERVED AYC ONLY :angry::angry: What The Actual Fuck!!!!! These moorings have been first-come-first-serve for as long as they have been there and still are according to the harbormaster website. We lucked out because someone wanted to get closer to the fireworks barge and left and we snagged their mooring about 0.8 seconds after they got off it, but to make matters ever worse only 2 out of the 6 moorings ever got used! I would love to know how a private club managed to convert a scarce public resource to their own property and then didn't even USE IT  :angry:

Maybe saving them for some of there WASP pals

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