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Burlingame State Park Campground

41° 22.895' N    71° 41.874' W   See this location in: Google Maps   Map Server   Acme Maps

Google Maps is the mapping system used on the new ExploreRI mapper and shows the access site located on a terrain view, a street map or an aerial photograph. Clicking on this link will take you to the full Google Maps website, which is not part of ExploreRI.
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This is a site for launching boats from trailers. Boat ramps can normally be used to launch canoes and kayaks but please do your best to keep the boat ramp clear for boat trailers.

Description & Overview:

This site, on the west side of Watchaug Pond, is within the large Burlingame State Campground, which has over 700 campsites. For those not staying at the campground, the boat ramp on the east side of the boat is a better place from which to launch.

Watchaug Pond is large and open and covers 573 acres. It is one of the largest freshwater lakes in Rhode Island. Much of Watchaug Pond is within Burlingame Management Area but the southern and eastern shore have some houses along them. Watchaug Pond is popular in the summer months, so except in the early morning it is likely to be a busy place, especially at the southeast end. The marshy western end feels more remote and wild. The pond is stocked with trout in the early spring. Watchaug Pond has an average depth of only 8 feet and the deepest location is 36 feet deep. "Personal Watercraft" ("PWCs") are not permitted on Watchaug Pond but motorboats and water-skiing are permitted and common.

This site provides access to the following water bodies in the Pawcatuck River watershed: Watchaug Pond.


Alternate Site Name: Watchaug Pond

Town: Charlestown

Driving Landmarks: From Route 1 south turn right at the sign for Burlingame Camping Area, after the light at Wildflower Road. This will put you on Old Post Road. Go 0.1 miles and turn right onto Klondike Road at the sign for Burlingame Camping Area. Go 1/8 mile and look for the campground entrance on the right.

From Route 1 north turn left at the light for East Beach Road, following the signs for Burlingame Camping Area. Go 100 feet and take a right on Old Post Road. Go 0.1 miles and turn left onto Klondike Road at the sign for Burlingame Camping Area. Go 1/8 mile and look for the campground entrance on the right.

The boat ramp is a the north end of the "Fisherman's Camp Area" and the "400 Area" near the cabins.

Access & Waters:

Water 'Features' At Site: lake/reservior

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 ramp

Float/Dock: no


Parking: yes: overnight parking permitted

Nearby Amenities:

Public Restrooms: Yes

Sources for More Information:

AMC Quiet Water Canoe Guide: 2nd Edition, page 211

Website: Burlingame State Campground

Website: Burlingame State Park Beach and Picnic Area on the east side of Watchaug Pond

Ecological, Cultural & Recreational Attractions:

Burlingame State Park includes 3,100 acres of rocky woodlands around Watchaug Pond. The campground has tent sites, RV sites (no hookups), eleven log cabins and one yurt. Despite its large size, the campground often fills up by Thursday evening on summer weekends. For more details about the park and campground see the website for the campground (link below). There is also a State Park beach and picnic area within Burlingame State Park near the DEM boat ramp on the east side of the pond. Adjacent to the campground, along the south shore of the pond, is the Audubon Society of Rhode Island's 29-acre Kimball Wildlife Sanctuary. An 8 1/2 mile walking trail goes around the pond, passing through Burlingame State Park and Kimball Wildlife Sanctuary.

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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 February 25, 2009

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