Seguin Island

43° 42′ 40″N , 69° 45′ 22″W

Phippsburg

Last edited by:

Photo: Courtesy Friends of Seguin Island

Seguin is an impressive high plateau located 2.5 miles off the mouth of the Kennebec River, crowned with a lighthouse built in the late 1700s under the rule of George Washington. Seguin is a great lunch stop. There are often moorings available, and it’s fun to go ashore and see the long tramway used for for bringing supplies from sea level up to the lighthouse during the era when it was manned. The Fresnel lens is the only first order Fresnel lens still operating north of Cape Hatteras; it’s an amazing piece of craftsmanship. Now, as almost all lighthouses along the coast, Seguin is automated. It was purchased in 1986 by a nonprofit called the Friends of Seguin, dedicated to protecting and preserving this historic and scenic piece of Maine’s maritime history.

Hiking to the top of this oceanic butte is like wandering through a dreamland of blackberry and bayberry bushes, ferns, and Rosa rugosa. The views from the top on a clear day are incredible. You can see as far as Mt Washington to the west and Mt Desert to the east. This is not a good place to spend the night due to the strong currents and rough waters that can quickly build in the area from the outflow of the two large rivers and the strength of the tidal currents. It’s not unusual to stumble on a bumpy passage across the mouths of the Kennebec and Sheepscot. The name Seguin comes from the Native American word “sutquin” meaning, appropriately, “the place where the sea vomits.”

Approach & Cautions

Photo: Michelle Kinerson

The anchorage is easy to access as you approach the island from the west and north. Simply leave Ellingwood Rock to starboard and aim for the center of the cove.

White building with wooden ramp leading down to the water on Seguin Island.

Click the chart to open Navionics.

Not to be used for Navigation.

Docking, Anchorages, or Moorings

You’ll see the several moorings available as you enter the cove. First come, first served. There are five new moorings this summer; some are on granite blocks, some are on “big rocks.” Choose one that fits your boat size. They’re maintained by the Friends of Seguin, and while they were inspected this year, they make no guarantee. Boaters advised not to anchor because of power cables.

Getting Ashore

Photo: Copyright Robert Ballard

You can row ashore and haul your dinghy up high and dry while hiking and exploring. Sometimes the volunteers from Friends of Seguin are out there giving tours and maintaining the island. Donations to help maintain the island are much appreciated.

Comment we received via our Feedback button: “There is a well worn & steep path that runs from the rocky beach up to and below the tramway to the light station. Visitors are not allowed to walk on the tramway…” And the island keeper responded that the tramway is in disrepair and no one is to walk on it!

Other Things To Do

  • Walk and soak up the views and feel of this oasis.
  • Read more about the island’s history at the Friends of Seguin Island website
  • Read an article about visiting Seguin at MaineBoats.com
walking sticks leaning against a wooden sign
Walking sticks kindly provided for your hike, but please return them!  Photo by Ernie Godshalk

Closest Safe Anchorages

  • Sebasco and West Point to the west and north
  • Boothbay and Damariscove to the east.

OUR REVIEWS

What CCA Members are saying:

I love this remote and unusual spot. Like Manana Island next to Monhegan, it feels like a remote island in Labrador. You are a world away out here. An amusing side note: the Hyde School, a prep school in Bath, Maine, has used Seguin to send recalcitrant students as a punishment, leaving them out there to help clear trails and think seriously about their behavior. I knew one young friend who was banished to the island for a week. He told me: “They thought I would suffer and feel bad about myself. The truth is I loved the place. Not a punishment at all!”

Nat Warren-White

We were very glad we stopped at Seguin in 2021, a nice (steep) walk (using the walking sticks in my photo on [this] page), tour of the lighthouse, nice people with Friends of Seguin. The moorings are a bit dodgy and dinghy landing a bit rough amidst rocks so go in calm weather.

Ernie Godshalk

Ernie Godshalk

thin

Got some feedback or notes for this page?

Send us your input.

Subscribe to newsletter

Subscribe to our newsletter

Our newsletter features updates to our blog with tips for Cruising Maine. The frequency of these emails are typically once a week in the Summer and then once a quarter in the Winter. We will never share your email address with outside parties or abuse this privilege. You can opt-out at any time.

Name