Wood End Light

Wood End Light

Located miles about an hour and a half to the port of Provincetown, Wood End Light watchtower occupies several acres of sand dunes and there are no other structures in sight. It was lit for the very first time on November 20, 1872 to take the sailors to the lively port of Provincetown.

The Cape Cod Chapter of the American Lighthouse Foundation, known for its excellent work with the restoration and use of Race Point Light over the years, also serves as a guardian to Wood End and long point light. Before Cape Lighthouse was built in 1864, the day of markers were used to guide sailors along the treacherous End wooden bar. Then many boats and their crews fell victim to the wood end bar. Despite the construction of three lighthouses in Provincetown, including Iceland wood Light. Still there were many reports of recent shipwreck that occurred on treacherous bars.

The Long Point Light Station, which was completed in 1875, is an identical design. Topped with a Fresnel lens of the fifth order, 39 meters high, square brick tower, pyramid was painted brown. A half guard wooden house plant was built next to the tower. In 1896, a new house replaced the wooden guard, in addition to a warehouse and an oil house, for the keeper.

What you need to know about Wood End Light

It was in 1896 that the first wooden structure house was built, as well as a warehouse and a small brick house for kerosene storage. This was after may ships fell victim to the treacherous bar and there was a concern that something needed to be done to avoid such disasters.

  • Automate in 1961: – After automation in 1961, the light station was unmanned except all buildings and the tower house and the oil were dismantled.
  • Eight days before Christmas in 1927, the S-4 Navy submarine and the Paulding Coast Guard collided half a mile south of Wood End Light. 40 men on S-4 died in the disaster. S-4 was charged three months later and was used to develop the most important safety measures for future submarines
  • At the tip of Cape Cod winters were hard and kept the Coast Guard from delivering supplies to the station. There was also the fact of the long distance from the lighthouse in the city, this sometimes added to bad weather contributed to supplies not being delivered on time.
  • The light station is equipped with a siren that sounds every 30 seconds
  • Wood end light was converted to be powered by solar energy in 1981. This helped save on spending on gas which was costly at the time and required constant labor to transport the oil and keep watch of the light house to keep refilling so that the lights keep functioning
  • It is possible for you to walk to the wood End of light through the breakwater, which was built in 1911, but the waves are sometimes violently during the flood. It is quite difficult for 30-45 minutes each way to the lighthouse. There is limited parking at the start of the walk. There is an extra walk of about 20 to 30 minutes from the center of the city.
  • The headlamp shows a flashing red light every 10 seconds at 45 meters above sea level, which is visible 13 NM. This enables ships at deep see to notice that they are approaching land or that they are passing near a harbor and need to be careful.

Why visit this lighthouse

Great experience on a hike when you love hiking. If you walk during low tide, you can walk on sand from Iceland Lighthouse on the Long Point Lighthouse tour, which is an additional 1 1/2 miles. The tour of the lighthouse and return to the first landing place is approximately 4 hours. With such a long hiking experience you are sure to have lots of time to bond with whoever you brought with you or meet new people who just came for the same experience. It is an experience of a lifetime that you just have to try if you willing.

Boat rides and ferry services are available to go to the lighthouse where you can discover, experience and enjoy things such as historical tours, whale watching, fishing and other trips that enter the port of Provincetown and disembark. You are sure to have lots of fun and you wont regret having visited wood end light.

As one of the international tourist capitals you will find many activities. Provincetown is one of the largest communities of artists in the state, with its numerous cultural events.

Directions to the Wood End Lighthouse

Take Route 6 to Provincetown Commerce (Route 6)

Turn left onto the shopping street and follow to the end of the street where you can park near the breakwater

To reach the lighthouse, you can hike and then another half mile through the sand to the lighthouse, the mile-long breakwater at low tide.

The Cape Cod Chapter of the American Lighthouse Foundation was authorized by the Coast Guard to restore and maintain Wood End Light. It is still an active aid to navigation today.

Finally, the Beacon Wood End Resort is located at the top of Cape Cod, near the port entrance Provincetown. It is part of the National Park of Cape Cod National Seashore. Coast Guard US keeps optics, which acts as an active navigation aid and is closed to the public. The country and the remaining structures are held by the Cape Cod chapter of the American Lighthouse Foundation. Light Station is restricted though you can access it using 4 wheel drive, but the National Park service won’t probably allow. So the only option you will be able to access the wood end light would be via hiking as even the boats will only pass close by and if you want to view it close hiking will be the best available option and the hike will be fun as you won’t be alone.

Near the very tip of Cape Cod, Wood End Lighthouse is
now an unmanned light that sounds a horn to alert for fog.
The lighthouse was built in 1872 and the adjacent oil house
was built in 1896.  This remote light can only be accessed by
a long hike.  If you go, be prepared for hot sun,
biting insects and no drinking water.

Wood End Lighthouse with Race Point light
in the background.

For more information and photos of the Wood End Lighthouse,
visit the webpage at the American Lighthouse Foundation.