Jamestown Shores Beach
This is a site for launching hand-carried boats such as canoes or kayaks.
Description & Overview:
WARNING: When you launch a boat here you are heading out onto the wide-open waters of the West Passage of Narragansett Bay. The Jamestown shoreline is straight and provides no shelter. Tidal currents, strong wind, large waves, and large vessels should be expected. For most paddlers there are more sheltered and more interesting places to paddle.
This put-in is simply a sand and gravel beach just north of the Shores Beach swimming area. With a suitable vehicle it may be possible to launch a small trailered boat here. It's certainly possible to launch hand-carried boats. There's a small breakwater just south of the put-in that provides some protection from waves in the usual summer southerly wind but no protection if the wind is from the west, northwest, or north. In addition, if a strong onshore (west, northwest, or north) wind comes up while you are paddling, landing safely may also become difficult or impossible.
NOTE: Parking here may be limited to permit holders between May 15 and October 15. Permits can be purchased at the Jamestown Recreation Department but cost more for non-Jamestown residents.
This site provides access to the following water bodies: Narragansett Bay.
Alternate Site Name: Head's Beach
Driving Landmarks: From the west: take the Jamestown Bridge to Conanicut Island (Jamestown) and take the first, for Helm Street. Take the first right onto Helm Street and then take another right, almost immediately, onto Hull Street. Go two blocks and turn right onto Seaside Drive. Follow Seaside Drive for 0.9 miles and turn into a dirt road just after the parking area for Shores Beach.
From the east: take the Newport Bridge to Conanicut Island (Jamestown). Continue on Route 138 most of the way across Conanicut Island and take the exit for Beacon Avenue. Continue on Beacon Avenue for 0.7 miles until you come to a T-junction with Frigate Street. Turn left onto Frigate and continue for about ¼ mile to the T-junction with Seaside Drive. Turn right onto Seaside Drive and go a few hundred feet. Look for a dirt road leading to the shore, just after the parking for Shores Beach.
NOTE: Parking here may be limited to permit holders between May 15 and October 15. Permits can be purchased at the Jamestown Recreation Department but cost more for non-Jamestown residents. If permit rules are in effect and if you don't have a permit it should be OK to unload your boats and gear and then park on a nearby street. Please respect local residents when parking.
Access & Waters:
Water 'Features' At Site: ocean/bay
Note: Because one boat launch can access, say, both a lake and a river or both the upstream and downstream portions of a river, not all paddling trips at a given site will necessarily encounter all of the features listed.
Type of Access: Boat launch for hand carried boats
ADA Accessible Boat Launch? no
Shoreline: Sand and gravel beach
Approximate Length of Carry between Car Access and Water: 50 feet
Parking: parking lot, 8 spaces
Public Restrooms: There may be a porta-potty here in the summer.
Sources for More Information:
Ecological, Cultural & Recreational Attractions:
Shores Beach is just south of the put-in. It's a small swimming beach (no life guard) between two short breakwaters, with a grassy area between the beach and the road. Please do not use the swimming beach to launch or land boats.
The data on this website come from many sources, including volunteers and organizations across the state of Rhode Island and nearby parts of Massachusetts. We have done our best to make sure the data are accurate and up to date, but any information critical to the success of your trip should be confirmed before you start. The maps and information on this website should not be substituted for nautical charts, topographic maps, or other more detailed maps and guides. We welcome corrections and additions. To send a correction or provide other feedback, please use our feedback form (see link above).
This site report was last updated on October 13, 2014