Lake George

Lake George
Lake George - from Tongue Mtn Range - 11/11/2011

Friday, September 16, 2011

Assateague Island - 9/10/11

Assateague Island is a barrier island that stretches along the middle of the Delmarva Peninsula in Maryland and Virginia.  Not only is it famous for its fine sandy beaches, but the Island is even more well known for its wild horses or ponies.  Assateague Island and Chincoteague Island in Virgina are home to 2 separate herds of wild horses.  Assateague's wild horses are well known to horse lovers.  Even if you don't think you are a horse lover, you would find yourself fascinated with watching these animals.

A business trip to Richmond, VA for Leesa, expanded into a 5 day vacation for the 2 of us, and we made the most of it.  We stayed at the Assateague Island State Park Campground for 2 nights and explored both Assateague and Chincoteague.  Our explorations were worthy of including a post in this adventure blog.

The bridge to enter Assateague Island.... and look at that pedestrian bridge!

We arrived at the entrance to the island at about 3 PM on Friday 9/9. We checked into the campground had the tent set up by 4. We grabbed our daypack and set off hiking down the beach. We planned to walk until 6 and then turn around and come back. I had headlamps and the GPS. Fog and darkness were our friends.

Mike heading with Leesa for a late afternoon walk with Leesa.  (We took the daypack and headlamps!)

There was still a rip current from tropical storms

Late afternoon fisherman.... note the fog

A storage shed for the lifeguard's use

surfer enjoying the day

This was the boundary between the State Park and the National Seashore

Dune grass in the late afternoon

An electric fence controlled where the horses could enter and exit the beach

Approaching the primitive camping area
Once we got to the southern end of the State Park Campground we continued to walk south, past the National Park Campground and out to where primitive camping was available at designated areas.  It was time to turn around at that point.  It's a good thing I had the GPS, even though we were on the beach.  It would have been hard to determine when to head back inland on the return.

fading sun

interesting clouds as sunset approached

You can just barely make out the surfer carrying his board in the fog and dusk

These next 3 shots came out blurry, but this was 6 AM the next morning and the horses were still sleeping (standing up) on the beach

Foal sleeping upright (mid-morning) at a campsite

This foal is sleeping on the ground

The mare and the stallion came to protect the foal when some people got too close taking pictures (not us!)

Here are 7 or 8 more photos to show you that horses were everywhere in the campground

Leesa in the surf one last time before we left 

Leesa enjoyed the ocean as always

Heading back to the car to leave

It was easy to get absorbed in the beach and surf and watching the horses was fascinating.  I woke up at 12:30 in the morning the 1st night when a horse whinied almost right outside our tent.  They were out there grazing.   After 2 days, it was time to go, but we certainly enjoyed this new experience. 

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