No paddle boarding in Dorchester Bay - without paying a fee

Malia Lazu reports she went down to Carson Beach with a paddle board yesterday, figuring she'd get a little water exercise in. But, she continues:

Was just stopped from paddle boarding at Carson because the beach has a contract with the business renting paddle boards. Who the fuck can get a contract to rent boards and get a monopoly of the beach? Boston I didn't even realize you had this problem. But I'm for sure adding it to the list.

UPDATE: Lazu adds to her initial report:

Everyone is right. I am allowed to use my board. So I am still not clear why the lifeguards stopped me, but it won't happen again. I'm bringing the rules and refs with me.

Ed. note: Carson Beach is run by the state DCR, not the city.

Neighborhoods: 

Free tagging: 

Comments

Does not seem right at all

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I can certainly see a contract excluding other rental-vendors, but not a person carrying their own board down to the beach. Would like to know precisely who stopped her? DCR staff? Or the vendor's staff?

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Who stopped her

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It's ridiculous.

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It's like if you gave a permit to a lemonade stand who then started approaching people on the beach telling them they weren't allowed to drink the beverages in their own coolers. Sell all the lemonade you want but you can't forbid people from doing their own thing. Sounds like a total racket.

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Well it's kind of like at the

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Well it's kind of like at the movies; you can't bring your own drink and have to buy what is served at the concession stand.

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Except...

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The theater is private and can set their own rules (they could allow outside food if they wanted to).

The beach is public and a private company can't set their own rules for the beach (they can't block outside equipment if they wanted to).

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That's BS. The beach is

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That's BS. The beach is public. The vendor may have exclusive rights to rent equipment but no way they can prevent people bringing their own.

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Update

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Hey! Michael from Boating in Boston here. We certainly do not prevent anyone from launching boats at any of our locations! The DCR does not allow public boat launching in marked swim areas as it is dangerous to the swimmers. However their are tons of spots to launch from! Hope this helps clear up any confusion -Michael

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Thanks!

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Thanks for stopping by to clear it up, Michael!

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Nonsense

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There is a kayak concession at Spot Pond, but you can bring your own.

I call shenanigans. This is a public waterfront - no exclusive use can be granted.

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Spot Pond Kayaks

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You may NOT, use your own kayak, canoe, or any other "craft" at Spot Pond, only their rentals. I know this because a few years ago, I put mine in across the pond at the parking lot there. After an hour of fantastic fishing I was approached my a man in a small boat who asked where I put in...I told him. He politely said I had to leave as watercrafts that have been exposed to flora from other bodies of water are very likely to contaminate the pond, which, at present is devoid of those horrible invasive species. You May, however, bring your own paddle and some chlorine wipes and wipe down your paddle as they watch. I attempted to bring my kayak and a quart of bleach to clean the hull but they wouldn't allow it.

On the one hand, I salute their diligence........water chestnut and other invasive weeds are KILLING New England lakes and ponds. On the other hand, those rentals are ridiculously expensive. The fishing however, is great.

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This likely runs afoul of the law

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See below. They can probably require you to clean your boat, but can not keep you from using the resource completely (see Great Ponds, etc). Might try to ticket you, but likely protected by the state constitution.

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Nope.

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Spot Pond is unique as it is a back-up reservoir to the Quabbin hence the additional protections.

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cleaning boats

The issues around invasive species are legit and worthy of some protection. But I've always seen the requirement to clean your boat stated that way, not as a prohibition against boats.

Also, soft material (the felt on the bottom of some fishing waders) is a major culprit.

Didymosphenia, known as Rock Snot (yes, really) is the one I've seen warnings signs for the most in Northern NE waters. There may be others in Mass.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Didymosphenia_geminata#Preventing_further_...
http://des.nh.gov/organization/commissioner/pip/factsheets/bb/documents/...

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Stopped by whom exactly?

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Name
Employer
Authority
Documentation
Otherwise just ignore the individual . Or call the State Police since Carson Beach is DCR.

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Drew doesn't rhyme with clue

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State law says that navigation is a protected activity.

I could understand them asking people to avoid a roped off swimming area, but the right to launch a boat is pretty much sacred on the salty shores of the Commonwealth.

http://www.mass.gov/eea/agencies/czm/program-areas...

Although the Colonial Ordinance changed the ownership of most intertidal flats from public to private, it did not transfer all property rights originally held in trust by the state. For one thing, no rights to the water itself (as distinct from the underlying lands) were relinquished by the Ordinance. Moreover, the law specifically reserved for the public the right to continue to use private tidelands for three purposes-fishing, fowling, and navigation.

Over the years, Massachusetts courts have ruled that the scope of activities on private tidelands covered by the reserved public rights of fishing, fowling, and navigation is broad, and includes all of their "natural derivatives." For example:

The right to fish includes the right to seek or take any fish, shellfish, or floating marine plants, from a vessel or on foot;
The right to navigate includes the right to conduct any activity involving the movement of a boat, vessel, float, or other watercraft, as well as the transport of people and materials and related loading and unloading activity; and
The right to fowl includes the right to hunt birds for sport as well as sustenance. (The Massachusetts Attorney General takes the position that the right of fowling also includes other ways that birds can be "used," such as birdwatching, but also notes that this issue has not yet been addressed by the courts.)

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You can use the intertidal

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You can use the intertidal zone for navigation. But that doesn't help much if private land, or public land with restrictive rules, creates an uncrossable barrier between the nearest public road and the intertidal zone.

This isn't like California where the state makes a point of providing public coastal access paths at regular intervals.

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Sounds like a crock to me

Man, that's bullshit, it's a public beach.

Carson Beach is run by the state DCR, not the city.

Hopkinton SP, run by DCR, has a third party that runs a very successful rental business on the lake - canoes, SUPs, sailboats, kayaks, etc. But, they sure don't have exclusive use of the lake.

I'd call his bluff for sure.

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Pleasure Bay isn't Carson Beach

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Her comment mentions Carson Beach, which is different from Pleasure Bay. Pleasure Bay is at the foot of East Broadway and I often see parasailers there. Perhaps she should try Pleasure Bay for paddle-boarding rather than Carson Beach??

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Yep

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Thanks, headline changed.

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I went to both beaches and was denied at both

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I have spoken to DCR and was told I can paddle board on the beaches. Not sure why I was denied, but I'll be back. Adam thanks for your attention on this. It helped me get clarity!
Be well and see you in the water.

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You can rent boats downtown

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You can rent boats downtown on Boston harbor, does that mean all the people who bring their own yachts are trespassing?

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paddleopoly

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try paddling across from the Portugal side, I'm guessing they have no jurisdiction over international waters.

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I was under the impression,

I was under the impression, having worked for several years at a Scout camp that owned all the property around a pond in Plymouth, that all bodies of water in Massachusetts are public, no one can own them, and they all have a public access point in which you can't impede the launching of a boat from. Maybe the ocean is different than inland bodies of water.

There were a few fishermen who would bring their canoes occasionally, there was nothing we could do to stop them, nor did we really want to, they were very respectful of our programs and we never had any issues.

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Great ponds

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Any pond that covers more than 10 acres is a "great pond" and open to the public. Not that some places don't make access hard (like, say, posting "No Parking" signs along nearby roads).

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Can towns do more to restrict

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Can towns do more to restrict the use of Great Ponds, such as banning swimming and boating access from town-owned shoreline?

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Another reason to ask for a

Another reason to ask for a supervisor anyone tells you that you can't do something that you reasonably believe you are allowed to do.

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Bogus story and foolish you

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Bogus story and foolish you for buying it and posting a blog about it

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Why is it bogus?

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Two lifeguards told her to leave with her paddle board.

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Awww, Poor Drew

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Hard enough being a head lifeguard without being expected to know the laws of beach access.

It must have sucked for you when you were chewed out for not knowing them.

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onset kayak poker tour

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well y'all are welcome to the balmy shores of onset for the annual "kayak poker tour" - best hand, not fastest boat- wins plus you can see aome of the most beautiful scenery. plus i will be there!
www.onsetbay.org or www.nemasketkayak.com

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