Boating, Fishing, and Travel Information for Branford, CT
Boating in Branford, CT Map View
Vessels up to 10-foot draft can select anchorage in the harbor southward of the Mermaids in 10 to 14 feet, protected against all but southerly and southwesterly winds. Boats up to 5-foot draft can select a well-sheltered anchorage in the upper part of the harbor above the Mermaids.
The harbormaster at Branford controls all moorings and anchoring; he can be contacted through the small-craft facilities. A 5 mph speed limit is enforced on the river.
There are several marinas and boatyards on the river.
A privately dredged channel and basin at a marina 0.5 mile east of Branford Point had reported depths of 9 feet in 1999.
Click the “Map View” button above to see a chart of this harbor.
To enter Branford Harbor from eastward, pass southward of the lighted buoy marking Negro Heads, steer about 306° heading for Taunton Rock, and enter between Taunton and Jeffrey Rocks; or a 333° course with Branford Reef Light astern will lead into the harbor between Jeffrey and Taunton Rocks. From westward, pass southward and over 100 yards eastward of the lighted bell buoy marking Cow and Calf, thence westward of the buoys marking Blyn Rock and Bird Rock to the buoyed channel in the harbor.
Local craft pass northwestward of Cow and Calf Shoal and midway between Johnson Point and Blyn Rock.
Branford River, narrow and crooked, extends northeasterly from Branford Harbor. In 2009, the midchannel controlling depth in the dredged channel was 4.0 feet from Branford Harbor to the upstream limit of the dredged channel.
At low water the channel above Branford Point is defined by bare shoals on each side. During the summer numerous stakes used as moorings mark both sides of the channel. A privately dredged channel and basin at a marina 0.5 mile east of Branford Point had reported depths of 9 feet in 1999.
The dangers in the approach and entrance to Branford Harbor either show above water or are marked by buoys. Cow and Calf, 1.3 miles southwestward of Jeffrey Point, are two boulders close together bare at low water. Boulders, reported covered 10 feet, are about 0.2 mile northward of Cow and Calf. Five Foot Rock, 0.5 mile northeastward of Cow and Calf, has 5 feet over it. Taunton Rock, 0.9 mile northeastward of Cow and Calf near the middle of the entrance to Branford Harbor, is large but low and bare. Blyn Rock, midway between Johnson Point and Taunton Rock, is covered at extreme high tide. Bird Rock, 0.2 mile northward of Blyn Rock, has 5 feet over it.
Little Mermaid, showing a little above high water, and Big Mermaid, a high rock marked by a light, are near the middle of Branford Harbor. Two bare rocks are near the head of the harbor. A rock, bare at low water and usually marked by stakes, is about 100 feet north-northeastward of the north end of Lovers Island.