Black buoys say stay north and east, red buoys say stay south and west. Lots of buoys dot our lake and they really do denote hazards. As a reminder, no marked buoys are needed withing 150 feet of shore to warn of rocks. With the draw down, the dangers near the shore and marked by buoys become evident.
The picture below is of the rocks around Cate Island with the Stamp Act sandbar seen over the left rock. Obviously, within less than 150 feet of shore, your boat could run in to trouble. People docking at the island know where they are so they can get to their dock but if you don’t know where the rocks are, you would be in trouble.
This is a telephoto shot of the rocks of the Third Ledge. Obviously, the buoy shows that there are dangers marked and a prop could easily hit a rock.
Below is a picture of the rocks off the NE end of Stamp Act, the point nearest Mink Island. If you try to get into the bay south of this point, these rocks can cause some trouble if you don’t know where they are but, then again, they are withing 150 feet of shore.
Below are some of the rocks in the large East Bay on Stamp Act. Obviously, there is a mine field in this bay. There is a black buoy saying that you need to stay to the north and east of all this trouble and you had better respect that buoy!
Off the SW corner of Stamp Act, near the Sisters, is a red buoy. It warns of a long ridge of rocks that point out toward that buoy. Don’t even think of going inside of the buoy, closer to the island, if you want to keep your prop in one piece.
If you are traveling around the Sister Islands, they have a lot of shallow water. The picture below was taken from Joe Island (one of the little islands near the Sisters), and obviously anyone traveling in that area needs to know where the rocks are or else is in a kayak that doesn’t need much water. Most areas here are withing 150 feet of shore so no “official” buoys are present.
Finally, going between Bass and Little Bass is a problem because now, there is a dry walkway between the two islands. Going between those islands would be a bad plan.