Ocean City and Assateague Island National Seashore
The COVID-19 crisis has had a major impact on everyone’s life. At the beginning of the year, I had planned out my vacation and mini-vacation plans for the year. My plan included two trips to Assateague Island, near Ocean City. The first one was canceled when the National Park Service closed camping. The second trip I planned for next month. I hope the restrictions are released so that I can go.
In May 2019, I went camping at the seashore and a side trip to nearby Ocean city Maryland.
While it is late, I thought I would share some photos I took that trip.
I spent a few hours walking around Ocean City Maryland while I was there as well. The visit was the week before their spring festival which officially open the season for them. I had the boardwalk mostly to myself. Few shops were open still it was a nice afternoon.
Assateague Island has both the National Seashore and a Maryland State Park. The National Seashore has two sections divided at the state line of Virginia and Maryland. A fence separates the two sections. An owner of a four-wheel drive vehicle can apply for an Over Sand Vehicle (OSV) use permit. This will allow them to drive on the beach past the public swimming and camping areas. However, normal cars can not use the OSV areas.
The National Seashore has a number of beaches, nature trails and camping sites. There are seaside camping sites and bay-side sites. Most of the sites are drive in sites suitable for RV and tents. Restrooms and showers are nearby. For the adventurist there are back-country sites that requires campers to hike in or arrive by kayaks. These sites have no facilities nor water sources.
While the primitive back-country sites does have a draw, that is not an adventure to do solo at least for me. I camped at one of the bay side camp sites in the B loop. Many of these sites are waterfront.
Be careful of the horses, They are wild
Both sections of the park have wild horses. The horses in Maryland belong to the NPS while the horse in Virginia belong to the Chincoteague volunteer fire department. Misty of Chincoteague a famous children book published in 1947 is about one of the horses of the Virginia herd. The horses in both herds are free to roam the island.
While the horses appear tame and accepting of humans they really are not. Each year videos of interactions between annoying park guest and the horse appear online with the guest always getting the bad end of the situation. It you respect that they are wild, you can enjoy the horses.
The campsite I had was just a short walk from the Life in the Marsh trail.
Life in the Marsh Traillife-of-marsh
Hover over the image to see the tools to go to the second page. The numbers on the guide correspond to points along the trail.
The Life on the Marsh Nature Trail is a bird watchers paradise.
Assateague Island and Life on the Dune
One of the amazing things about Assateague Island is the variety of wildlife flora and fauna. There are three nature trails in the north section of the park, each a short distance apart. However, they represent completely different ecological zones. The Life on the Dune reminds you of a desert with shrubs and brush. My other post on the island had some photos of the dunes, here are a few more.life-of-dunes Assateague Island
Hover over the image to see the tools to go to the second page. The numbers on the guise correspond to points along the trail.
If you have not already read it take a look at my earlier Assateague Island National Seashore post. Some great photos there too.
You can more photos on my flickr page in the Assateague Island album