Posts Tagged ‘ Lighthouses ’

Ninigret Beach – Charlestown

  • Ninigret Beach (East Beach)
  • East Beach Road, Charlestown, RI
  • Trailhead:  41°20’37.88″N, 71°41’22.71″W
  • Last Time Hiked: February 15, 2020
  • Approximate distance hiked: 5.8 miles
  • Fairly easy beach walk.

 

The beach between Blue Shutters Beach and the Charlestown Breachway is part of East Beach State Park and the Ninigret National Wildlife Refuge. It is a long three mile strand of beach that is not overwhelmed with humans. In the summer a fee must be paid the access the beach and parking is very limited. In the winter the beach is desolate, especially at sunrise. This day was a windless but brutally cold February morning. Hike time temperature was a sweltering 7 degrees Fahrenheit. I came here armed with cameras to catch the sunrise, multiple layers of clothes, but mostly to find solitude to clear the mind. Success! I arrived at the small parking area before sunrise and made my way to the beach. To the east I could see the beacon of the Point Judith Light. To the south I could see the lights of Block Island twinkling. Along the horizon between them, the glows of pink, magenta, fuchsia, and orange setting the sky up for a spectacular sunrise. I turned to the east and followed the empty beach for a few miles. At 6:42 AM, just as scheduled, the piercing light of the sun broke the horizon. The beach suddenly a glow of of the colors in the sky. In the distance I could make out my destination, a dark shadow strip of the breachway stretching into the ocean. As the sun rose into the sky the beach came to life with sea birds. The waves broke gently and peacefully.  I spent only a few minutes at the breachway before retracing my steps back to the parking area. This walk is exactly what was needed. I did not run into a single soul! Also as a side-note, I was still cold when I ordered my breakfast sandwich at Sophie’s (in Exeter) a little while later.

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Winter Sunrise

Sakonnet Point Path – Little Compton

  • Sakonnet Point Path
  • Sakonnet Point Road, Little Compton, RI
  • Trailhead:  41°27’50.06″N, 71°11’43.81″W
  • Last Time Hiked: January 5, 2020
  • Approximate distance hiked: 0.5 miles
  • Easy.

 

This is a very short walk just being under a half mile in total. The walkway, open to the public, is provided by the Sakonnet Point Club. The short paved path wraps around a parking lot separated by a post and rail fence. The remainder of the walk is out to the end of the breakwater. The views here are spectacular. To the south is the lower reaches of the Sakonnet River meeting the Atlantic Ocean as well as the lighthouse just off shore. If you look closely you will spot the ruins of the West Island Fishing Club (just to the left of the lighthouse). To the northwest you can spot the Newport Bridge peaking over Aquidneck Island. If you do venture onto the breakwater use caution.

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Sakonnet Point Light and The Atlantic Ocean

Head’s Beach – Jamestown

  • Head’s Beach
  • Seaside Drive, Jamestown, RI
  • Trailhead:  41°32’16.05″N, 71°23’8.09″W
  • Last Time Hiked: September 7, 2019
  • Approximate distance hiked: 0.3 miles
  • Easy beach walk.

 

Head’s Beach is a small town owned beach on the west side of Jamestown with sweeping views that include the Jamestown Bridge, Plum Island Light, and Quonset Point. This walk is very short, just over a quarter mile, but the beach itself is serene. Parking is limited to residents from May 15th to October 15th.

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The Jamestown Bridge From Head’s Beach

Pheasant Hill Beach – Portsmouth

 

At the end of Pheasant Road just after the railroad tracks and to the right is a parking area for Pheasant Hill Beach. From here you can follow the road a few hundred feet to the walking path the follows the shoreline toward the Mount Hope Bridge. At the end of the path there is a narrow trail that continues ahead. Along this trail are sweeping and stunning views of a marsh to your right, the bridge ahead, and Hog Island Lighthouse to your left. At the end of the trail are a row of boulders. From here turn left and make your way to the beach. From here you can follow the beach back a bit to one of the access points back to the walking path that leads back to the parking area.

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Walking Path With Mount Hope Bridge In The Distance.

Squantum Woods – East Providence

  • Squantum Woods
  • Veterans Memorial Parkway, East Providence, RI
  • Trailhead:  41°47’45.49″N, 71°22’16.48″W
  • Last Time Hiked: June 17, 2019
  • Approximate distance hiked: 1.2 miles
  • Fairly Easy.

 

Once a State Park, now owned by the City of East Providence, Squantum Woods Park has gone through a renaissance over the last couple years and has become a suburban gem. For this walk starting at a parking area off of Veterans Memorial Parkway make your way to the brick walkway at the entrance. Names are inscribed in the bricks of locals who have served in the military. At the end of the walkway is the “Garden of Flags”, a memorial to local Vietnam Veterans. Next walk on the grass toward the tree line and follow the edge of trees toward the back of the park near the back side of the pond. Here you will find a the beginning of a wood chip trail. The trail wraps around the backside of the Kettle Point neighborhood towards the East Bay Bike Path. There are spectacular views of Long Rock Cove below and the Providence River. The shrubs along this stretch are a haven for smaller birds. Yellow warblers, red-winged blackbirds, and finches were observed here at the time of this walk. The trail ends at the bike path. From here you can add as much distance to a walk as you would like. For this walk turn right and follow the bike path a little over a tenth of a mile. On the left there is an “Urban Coastal Greenway – Public Access” sign at a clearing. The clearing leads to a small beach (at low tide) that offers great views of the Port of Providence and the base of the Fuller Rocks Lighthouse (destroyed by an explosion in 1923). From here retrace you steps back to the pond at Squantum Woods and stay to the left of the pond to get to the parking area. Be sure to look for birds in and around the pond. The park also offers picnic benches. Do carry out what you carry in if you so choose to have a picnic before or after your walk.

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A Summer View of Long Rock Cove

Potowomut Beach – Warwick

 

Often mistaken for East Greenwich, Potowomut, meaning Land of Fires, most famously known for its golf course and Goddard State Park is in fact in Warwick. At the very end of the peninsula lies a very short beach where Narragansett Bay meets Greenwich Bay. Views of Buttonwoods, Oakland Beach, Warwick Neck and its lighthouse, Patience Island, Prudence Island, Hope Island, and Jamestown can be observed from the point.

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Potowomut Beach Looking North

 

Sand Point Light – Portsmouth

  • Sand Point Light
  • Narragansett Avenue, Portsmouth, RI
  • Trailhead:  41°36’22.33″N, 71°18’17.89″W (1 mile from ferry)
  • Last Time Hiked: July 29, 2018
  • Approximate distance hiked: 0.4 miles
  • Easy.

 

There is a large grassy area on a hill just in front of the lighthouse along Narragansett Avenue. Walking down the hill leads you to a grass mowed path that will lead you to the historic lighthouse and beach area. The lighthouse, the oldest existing in Rhode Island, was built in Newport in 1823 and moved to Prudence Island in 1851 where it has since stood. Its green beacon can be seen throughout the East Passage and from the mainland from Bristol to Middletown. The lighthouse itself withstood the historic hurricanes of 1938 and 1954, but the keepers house was swept out to sea during the 1938 storm killing five people. Making your way out to the actual point you will get a sweeping view of the East Passage including both the Newport Bridge and Mount Hope Bridge. On clear days you see up Mount Hope Bay to Fall River and the Braga Bridge. The Hog Island Light is also visible from here. Continuing to the Town Dock onto Landing Lane and then right onto Narragansett Avenue will conclude this short walk.

 

NOTE: If you plan on hiking on Prudence Island, be known that the island is not commercialized. There are no restaurants, lodging, or transportation services. There are no public restrooms on the island except a composting toilet by the T-Wharf at the southern end of the island, which is several miles from most hikes. Once you are off the ferry you are on your own. Bring everything you will need for a day hike with no services. Furthermore, ticks are in abundance on the island. It is necessary to take precautions including proper clothing, sprays, and frequent checks.

 

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Sand Point Light With The Mount Hope Bridge In The Distance