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Race-Day Information

Arrival & Check-In

Open up the Arrival & Registration Map or refer to the Arrival & Registration Map below.

Upon arrival, enter the Contestant Parking area from Crawford Street (approach Olde Towne on High Street and make a left on Crawford). Enter from the first entrance -- the rear part of the lot is reserved for the Coast Guard. Day-parking in the Contestant Parking area is limited to the first 40 contestants to arrive and is limited to the 3 rows of parking spaces within the Contestant Parking area furthest away from High Street. The parking spaces along High Street are limited to loading and unloading of Kayaks, SUPs and Canoes and parking beyond that may subject you to ticketing. Additional Contestant day-parking is available in the City Public Parking Garage shown on the bottom of the Map (the entrance is on Crawford Street).

Please allow 45 minutes to arrive, offload your Kayak, SUP or Canoe, park, register/check-in and launch your Kayak/SUP/Canoe. We expect to have a limited number of volunteers to assist with offloading and launching. Check-in and registration opens at 8:30 AM.

Once you have offloaded your Kayak/SUP/Canoe and parked, come to the Registration Table and check in. Anyone who has not registered on-line will be able to register on-site, however, we are limiting the number of Contestants to 125 and on-site Registration will cost $60. If you have preregistered, you still need to check in to get your Race Bib and sign Liability Waiver. On-line Registration closes at 11:59 PM on Wednesday, September 4, 2024.

Following check-in, you will be able to launch your Kayak/SUP/Canoe and proceed out of the Basin and onto  the Race Course.

Race Starting Times

It is very important that you allow time to arrive, offload your Kayak/SUP/Canoe, park, check-in/register, launch your Kayak/SUP/Canoe and get to the Starting Line at least 10 minutes before the time your race is scheduled to start. Race starts will not be delayed.

Tentative Race Start Times are as follows (final Race Starting Times will be posted by 2:00 PM on September 5):









The Race

Open up the Race Course Map or refer to the Race Course Map below.


The Race Course is from the Starting Line just outside of the High Street Landing basin (see Map), then south to a floating turning mark at the Hammerhead Crane (it's a big crane thing that looks just like the crane on the top of this page), then back north to the Finish Line (same as the Starting Line).


Starting Sequence

The Race Committee will be stationed on the right-hand corner of the Basin as you leave the Basin. They will have a flag up that says "RC".

  • 10 minutes prior to your Star -- the Race Committee will sound an air horn with 5 short blasts and call out the next starting Group.

  • 5 minutes prior to your Start -- the Race Committee will sound an air horn with 3 short blasts and call out your Group.

  • 2 minutes prior to your Start -- the Race Committee will sound an air horn with 1 short blast and call out your Group. At this point the Race Committee will raise an orange flag.

  • Start -- time to go! The Race Committee will sound an air horn with 1 long blast, lower the orange flag and yell "GO". The Race Committee will announce if you crossed the Starting Line early -- if they do you must safely turn around and re-start the Race or you will be disqualified.

Rules. We have very few rules but the few we have are very important.

First, there will be a floating marker marking the eastern edge of the Starting Line. This will also mark the eastern edge of the Race Course. There will also be a boat at the Hammerhead Crane marking the eastern edge of the Race Course up by the Hammerhead Crane. Think of these two eastern edge marks as creating the eastern edge of a box with the shoreline marking the western edge of the box. It is very important that you stay inside this box. We want to ensure a fun and safe time for everyone and we want to avoid interfering with any ship traffic. The Coast Guard looks very dimly on -- and you MUST avoid -- interfering with ship traffic.

Second, wear a USCG approved life vest/PFD and SUPers should be leashed to their board.

Third, there will be a number of Race Committee boats out on the Course along with a Portsmouth Fire Department boat and, possibly, a Coast Guard boat. You must follow any directions given to you by any of these boats. Failure to do so will result in your disqualification.

Fourth, this is not the Olympics and no one is getting a $1,000,000 sponsorship out of this Race. Enjoy and be courteous to the other racers. Avoid, to the greatest extent possible, cutting anyone off. Collisions will result in disqualification.

Fifth, keep your bib on and visible. This is the only way the Race Committee on the Finish Line will be able to score your finish and you can't win without a properly scored finish.


The Prize ceremony will be at 12:30 PM (approximate, as soon as we have the final scoring).

Tide and Current Information


Be sure to check this page some time after 12:00 noon on September 1, 2024, for any changes to the above procedures. We reserve the right to change the above procedures up until 2:00 PM, September 5, 2024.

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