Schedule Set for MA’s Charles River Mooring Program


On Wednesday, March 16, 2016, Massachusetts environmental officials announced the application schedule for the 2016 Charles River Basin Mooring Program.

The state’s Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) annually offers 60 mooring locations in the Charles River Basin, between the First Street Landing and Poorman’s Landing, to the public through a lottery system. The application period began on Monday, March 14, 2016 and will conclude on Friday, April 29, 2016, with the final drawing held on Tuesday, May 3, 2016.

“The Charles River is an important part of the DCR portfolio, which offers unparalleled recreational opportunities to millions of visitors each year,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Matthew Beaton. “By participating in the Charles River Basin Mooring program, boat owners will observe historic landscapes of the cities of Boston and Cambridge, the natural beauty of the river, and wildlife habitats for hundreds of animals and plant species.”

Candidates will be notified by phone within 10 days after the lottery regarding the status of their application. A $6.00 per foot fee will be charged to boat owners for the season, which runs from May 16, 2016 through November 12, 2016.

“From lazy summer days along the Charles, to the pomp and circumstance of the Fourth of July celebration at DCR’s Hatch Memorial Shell, the 60 winners of the Charles River Mooring lottery will have a front row seat to an exceptional recreational experience,” said DCR Commissioner Leo Roy. “I am pleased that DCR is once again able to offer this special opportunity to enjoy the Charles River in 2016.”

DCR has set forth the following requirements for lottery entrants:

  • A copy of a valid and current Massachusetts boat registration for the boat to be moored on the Charles River must be submitted with the application or the application will be rejected; NO EXCEPTIONS.
  • The maximum boat length is 35 feet, and only the boat registered to the mooring will be allowed to use that mooring.
  • Only pleasure boats will be entered into the lottery. Commercial boats or boats for hire will not be allowed.
  • The applicant must supply the mooring and all other necessary equipment at his or her own expense, and moorings must meet United States Coast Guard specifications.
  • Each mooring must consist of a mushroom anchor with a chain capable of holding the boat in place under adverse weather conditions.
  • Boat owners must provide an 18” to 20” fiberglass mooring ball on which a number can be permanently affixed. This mooring ball is to be used at all times.
  • All moorings must be installed and removed at the owner’s expense no later than November 12, 2016. Future mooring permits will be refused to any permit holder failing to remove moorings by this date.

The DCR has made reasonable attempts to develop specifications believed to be proper. They are not a guarantee or assurance of a safe mooring. The ultimate responsibility and liability rests on the individual boat owner for damage sustained due to use, inclement weather, and other factors beyond DCR’s control. The DCR will not be held liable for property damage or personal injury or death sustained as a result of any incident resulting from the operation and use of this permit. Prior to permit issuance, permittee will be required to sign a waiver.

Applications can be found on the DCR website HERE. Any questions regarding the 2016 Charles River Basin Mooring Program and Lottery should be directed to the DCR at or 617-727-5290 ext. 0. Payment remittance and completed applications should be sent to:

Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation
Attention: Charles River Basin Mooring Program
165 Day Blvd
South Boston, MA 02127