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boat being launched into Pettegrow Beach
Photo by Chris Hamilton

Pettegrow Beach

Guidelines for Use of LMF Properties

Canoeing/Kayaking Trailer boat access 

Project Description

Residents of Machiasport have long considered Pettegrow Beach, a cobble beach on Buck’s Harbor, to be a community resource. The gently sloping beach is ideal for launching small boats, serving the needs of commercial fishermen, anglers, fish farmers, clammers and recreational boaters. It is the only beach in the area that has sufficiently deep water at low tide–a critical requirement for those who need to lobster, long-line or harvest shellfish. The community’s fishing fleet numbers 75 boats, and many area fishermen rely on Pettegrow Beach.

The former landowners graciously allowed this traditional use, but the community was vulnerable to losing shore access if the property changed hands. “We’re a maritime community,” explains town selectman Douglas Campbell, “so water access is vital to us: all our eggs are in that basket.” Recognizing the need to preserve that basket, the Town negotiated with the owners to acquire Pettegrow Beach and gained unanimous approval at a townwide meeting to complete the purchase using town funds and a Land for Maine’s Future Program grant. Maine Coast Heritage Trust also provided support for the project. Pettegrow Beach is now owned and managed by the Town of Machiasport.