A very nice experience……………………………………………..
Assateaque Island is approximately 37 miles long and is a barrier island off the east coast of the United States. It is located directly south of Ocean City, Maryland along the Delmarva peninsula. Two thirds of the island is in Maryland and the other third is in Virginia. One of the biggest attractions are the herds of wild horses that inhabit the island.
Our trip started a couple years ago when our friends Jim and Joyce from central Pennsylvania invited us to visit them there. They spend the month of June on the island as one of several hosts at the state camp site. Their responsibilities include cleaning up the sites when vacated in preparation for incoming campers, socializing and greeting campers, manning a booth at the entrance to the park, selling ice and fire wood in the evening and shoveling horse shit off the roads and generally keeping the place tidy. Since there are many hosts, they only have to man the booth and sell ice and fire wood a couple times during the month. The rest of the time they are only responsible for a small area of the park assigned to them.
Since my wife was nice enough to allow me to go on a trip to Florida in February on the motorcycle I thought she at least deserved this trip. She doesn’t mind camping, she loves the beach and she likes horses. A perfect marriage of things for her. So, I gave Jim a call and discussed dates and confirmed our plan to visit.
I started the travel plans and determined the trip would involve 716 mile one way for a little over 11 hours. Too far to travel in one day for us old folks. So, we made reservations for stops along the way.
We got on the road headed for Assateaque Monday, June 17th around 11AM and got to the motel in Cumberland, MD around 4:30PM. Drove a total of 448.4 miles. We had breakfast and got on the road Tuesday and arrive at Assateaque around 2:30PM. Total miles on the truck for today was 305.4 miles.
Here is Kathy on the beach the day we arrived. Can’t you just see how upset she is to be there? Anyway, we did some running around the day we got there to do some shopping and picked up some fast food for dinner. Then Kathy wanted to go to the beach and ended up looking for sea shells for the grand kids.
Here’s the camper we stayed in. This belongs to Jim and Joyce. They haul it down the beginning of June and haul it back the end of June. We all slept in the camper and used the tent you see there for storage.
Wednesday we were up early and to the showers. This was the Maryland State Park and the facilities were fantastic. I have never been to a park anywhere that had such nice bathhouses. We went with Jim and Joyce for their daily routine of cleaning things up and walking around their area of responsibility. Got back to the camper, chatted awhile then had one of Kathy’s favorites, Hot Dogs cooked over a camp fire.
Jim had a few places he wanted us to see so we all piled in his pickup truck and headed out for the afternoon. Our first stop was the National Park on the island. I have a Passport book for the National parks so I got mine stamped. Then we went on a walk through the marsh land in the back bay. This was part of the State Park and was literally a board walk they built through the marsh land. A wide variety of animals and we got to see some people crabbing off the walk.
We continued visiting some places around the island and bought a bunch of stuff to bring home to the grand kids.
Here we had Jim get a picture of Kathy and me in front of the visitor center. Then we were off for dinner. Jim recommended a good seafood place so we went up there for dinner. Excellent food. Can’t get that kind of seafood around here. Then we rode on up to Ocean City and checked out the board walk.
Here is what the board walk looks like today. A far cry from what I remember it looking like. We did some shopping and checked out some stores and the scenery. The girls bought some goodies then we got started back to the camper.
We got back to the camper and Joyce’s knee was bothering her so Kathy and I took a walk up through the adjacent camping area and out on the beach to look for more sea shells. Then back to the camper.
Thursday after our morning routine, Kathy headed for the beach with Joyce. Jim went for his daily cleanup detail. When he got back we dug out his HAM radio stuff and tried to play radio. Had a problem we couldn’t fix with his antenna so we gave up after several hours of trying. We chatted awhile then took a ride down to the public use snack bar and had some ice cream and enjoyed the sights. Back to the camp site. Kathy and Joyce came back half baked. We all got cleaned up and out to a Crab Shack for dinner. Again, another fabulous meal that you will never get around here. We played cards and had a good time till time for bed.
Friday Jim had to man the incoming booth for the camping area so I went along with him. Spent several hours and about 1:30 headed back to the camper. Kathy went to the beach again but it was very windy and the sand was blowing so she came back early. We sat around relaxing and enjoying the weather. Had a light dinner, played cards and to bed.
Saturday morning we said goodbye to Jim and Joyce and headed home. Got an early start and stopped for brunch along the way. Traveled to Fairmont, WV and stayed overnight. Had dinner at the Cracker Barrel. Total miles for today was 365.4
Sunday we were up, had breakfast at the motel and on the road by 8:30AM. Stopped for lunch and was home by 2:30PM.
Kathy and I both enjoyed the trip. Kathy especially like the beach and horses. And I enjoyed the time I spent with Jim and the sights.
That’s about the story. Here are a few more pictures I think you’ll enjoy.
This is Kathy and Joyce on the boardwalk through the marsh at the National Park. Kathy was busy taking lots of pictures.
This is Kathy on the beach with our friend Jim.
This was the beach. As you can see it was not crowded at all and very well maintained. No lifeguards in this area but they did have them at the public use area. This was about 300 yards from where the camper was parked.
Here is a picture of some of the horses. This is obviously at the dump station. They know how to turn the water on when they want a drink. Kathy got a video of them doing that.
And the horses are not shy at all. They are wild so everyone is warned to stay a bus length away from them. But it’s their area so they roam free and the campers just get out of the way.
OK, that’s it. if you want to look at the rest of the pictures we took feel free to browse here.