If you have been reading my blog for awhile, you know I love to go to Assateague Island when I can. JoJo and I headed down after work because I snagged a campsite at the National Seashore.
I had never stayed at the National Seashore campground before so I was a bit nervous because the campsite I got was a walk-in site on the beach. This meant I had to lug all of my stuff to the campsite from where my car was parked – all with a dog. Also, there were only chemical toilets (aka port-a-pots) whereas at the State Park they have actual bathrooms with flush toilets. The port-a-pots actually made it easier for me because I was there by myself and was able to bring JoJo with me when I went to the bathroom, unlike the state park where dogs are not allowed in the bath houses.
Since it was just the two of us, I stuffed all of my camping gear into my backpacking pack to help me reduce trips back and forth to my car – it worked out really well. It wasn’t really far from camp to the car, but it was late by the time we got there and so I was glad I didn’t need to make 100 trips – plus then more time to enjoy the beach! 🙂
I set up camp as the sun was setting and was bummed I wasn’t able to take any pictures of the awesome sunset. I was getting eaten alive by the bugs – it was actually the WORST I have ever experienced it although I know Assateague is known for biting insects. We crawled into the tent as fast as we could and listened to the waves crashing on the beach only a few feet away. I quickly drifted off to sleep…only to be woken up a short time later by people banging pots and pans yelling “GIT! Get outta here!! There’s horses by the food!!” I am not kidding you this went on until 11:30 PM – I was not a happy camper. The rule is to keep your food in your car so the horses don’t have access to it. It seemed like people were just being too lazy to walk it back to their cars, so instead they decided to keep yelling while banging pots and pans for a good chunk of the night. Guess what – Jo and I left all our food in our car and didn’t have a problem.
At 5:00 AM the banging and yelling resumed. Jo and I crawled out of the tent to start our day – and immediately started getting attacked by the bugs again. This was not the relaxing trip I had hoped for! Jo and I got up anyway to watch the sunrise. We wandered over to where people had gathered around some horses by our camp – I got my camera out to take a few pictures when this guy came over. For some reason Jo didn’t like him and started barking. The man turned around and started yelling at me “SHHH! THERE ARE HORSES HERE!” ‘No duh.’ I wanted to say, ‘She’s not barking at the horses, she’s barking at you.’ but instead I walked to the beach to take photos of the sunrise – and what a sunrise it was!
After wandering around the beach for a while, we headed back to camp to pack up. By the way, the horses were still there, the guy was gone, and not a peep from Jo. I packed everything up and stuffed as much as I could into my backpack. Sand was in every nook and cranny – there is no avoiding that! I put everything back into the car and we drove up and down the island looking for more horses.
I love Assateague, but I was very happy to get away from the bugs and the banging pots and pans! 🙂 If you do visit Assateague, please make sure you are aware of all the rules – they are there for our protection as well as the horses! Help me take care of this beautiful place so it will be there for many years – but feel free to use as much bug spray as you want…it probably won’t help. 🙂