Category Archives: Maryland

Assateague Island National Seashore (Maryland)

WHEN

April 8, 2012

ABOUT THE TRIP

After our fun trip to Cape May, we were so excited to go on our next adventure to Assateague Island. This day trip has been on our list for awhile and we were told by so many people that we “had to go” so we were thrilled to finally go and see the “PONIES!” I probably drove Dave crazy chanting “PONIES” all weekend long. Have you seen the Jimmy Kimmel piece, “I Gave My Kids A Terrible Present?” To get an idea as to how I said PONIES, at about 3:50 in the clip you can check it out here, or below.

You’ll see the little kid talking about how he got PONIES from Santa. HI-LAR-IOUS. And if you haven’t seen the entire video, you should watch it. Anyway, once we arrived in the park, we stopped at the Visitor’s Center to grab some pamphlets and maps. Then we were off to the races.

We wondered if we would actually see PONIES because sometimes we don’t have the best luck when it comes to observing wildlife. We couldn’t believe it when we rounded the corner and there were 2 ponies, not one, not TWO! We (or I) was over the moon. Of course we’ve seen ponies before, but not Assateague ponies. We saw a few more before arriving at our first stop, Marsh Nature Trail. It’s a short little roundabout trail that offers nice views of the marsh. Throughout the day, we saw tons of hoof prints and I was afraid that we’d stumble upon the horseys, startle them and cause a stampede. After that nice little circuitous jaunt, we headed off to hike the Dunes Nature Trail.

We learned at the Visitor’s Center that about 60 years ago, the island was going to be developed, but a storm submerged the island and put a stop to everything. It was so bizarre to walk along the trail and see manmade features in such a beautiful place. We walked on crumbling asphalt that was slowly eroding away from the natural elements and passed by signs indicating the plots that were going to be for sale. The day was hot and it felt like we were walking in a desert. The whole trail was a walk in the sand and we were thankful to have our hiking boots.

By the end of this hike we were ready to hit the beach. We started walking along the beach and as in our usual style we just kept walking and walking until we were the only ones on the beach. We were getting ready to turn around and start heading back when Dave spotted them….a herd of wild ponies off in the distance. They were a good mile away so we plowed forward hoping that they wouldn’t run away….and they didn’t. We sat on the beach and took so many pictures. We reveled in the moment. They were so beautiful and it was so awesome to see them playing and trotting around. We hung around with them for a good hour before they headed farther into the dunes. What a fantastic end to such a beautiful Easter Sunday day trip. (That evening we headed to Dogfish Head for dinner, got ice cream at Archies on Rehoboth Avenue and strolled along the boardwalk)

WHAT WE BROUGHT

[listcheck]

  • IPhone4S
  • 1 North Face backpack
  • Layered clothing
  • Hiking Boots
  • Clif Bars
  • Panasonic FZ8
  • Hats
  • Sunglasses
  • Moolah
    • [/listcheck]


      ShOW ME THE DOUGH

      Entrance Pass=$15.00
      Fuel=~110 miles round trip=$12.00

      GRAND TOTAL: $27.00


      PHOTOS

Sugarloaf Mountains

Sugarloaf Mountain, Dickerson, MD

[confirmation]Experience level: 2/5 [/confirmation]

About the Trip

What can we say? The weather was phenomenal and we wanted to spend the day outside. Fall is our favorite time for hiking and since we did not want to venture too far away from home, we decided on hiking Sugarloaf. We parked and our trail path was as follows: “Blue and White” trail to “Blue” trail to “Red’ trail (to the summit) to “Blue” trail to the parking lot. The hike was approximately 5.5 miles long. This area is home to the timber rattlesnake and the copperhead so for the first half of the trip, we had our eyes peeled for these creatures. The fear eventually wore off. It doesn’t even surprise us that we didn’t even catch a glimpse of a snake because we are a natural wildlife repellent!  We see more wildlife outside our home than we do when we day trip.  Stinkbugs and gnats are all that we saw on this trip.
[warning]Be on the lookout for swarms of 2-legged creatures! :)[/warning]

WHAT WE BROUGHT

[listcheck]

  • Canon Powershot SD1000
  • Two Camelbaks
  • Athletic clothing
  • Sneakers
  • PBJs
  • Grapes
  • Two Apples
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses
  • Visors

[/listcheck]

HIGHLIGHTS

It was the perfect fall day—the sky was clear blue, there was a nice warm breeze and the vantage points were spectacular.

LIVE AND LEARN

The sunset would have been amazing on top of the summit, but we arrived there way too early. We thought that it would be fun to visit the Sugarloaf Mountain Winery, which resides at the bottom of the mountain, but after hiking for a few hours and having spent the day before at a winery, we nixed that idea.
[info]Be mindful that we do share the forest with some of our poisonous snake friends…errr…foes?  So watch your step![/info]


Show me the dough

Fuel cost: 86 miles round trip = $9.00

GRAND TOTAL: $9.00


PHOTOS:

billyGoat

Billy Goat Trail Section A (Potomac, Maryland)

[confirmation]Experience level: 2/5 | Get ready to rock scramble![/confirmation]

ABOUT THE TRIP:

It was the dead of winter and we were tired of sitting indoors and looking at each other, haha, so we needed to get outside for a little bit.  We did some research to see what hikes were close by, and found this awesome trail.  We hiked the Billy Goat Trail Section A which is located in Great Falls National Park on the Maryland side.  We parked right next to the Great Falls Tavern Visitor Center.

The blue blazes guided us through this 1.7 mile zig-zagging trail that runs adjacent to the Potomac River. We only wish that we had hooves and a bun protector as we slid, gripped, climbed, and leaped over the huge boulders. From afar, the vertical incline that we came across looked daunting, but getting to scale the giant rock was exhilarating. The views of the transparent turquoise water and the white craggy mountain background were spectacular. This trail was so much fun that when we finished, we were bleating to do it all over again!  (hehe.)  After we finished the trail, which lead us back to the towpath, we walked an additional 1.7 miles back to the parking lot.

[warning]Don’t forget your hooves…wear shoes that have good traction![/warning]

WHAT WE BROUGHT:

CanonSD Powershot 1000, CamelBak, Cliff Bars, warm layers, hiking boots, sneakers, gloves, scarves, sunglasses, and a wool hat, and a fleece headband.

HIGHLIGHTS:

Our favorite part of the trail was scrambling over the huge boulders.  We loved sitting at the edge of the cliff and watching the kayakers come racing down through the Gorge.  Unbeknownst to us, we came upon a cliff face on the trail that we got to scale.  The cliff face was icy and we had to get a little creative climbing it, but it was so much fun.  The trail was pretty muddy from all of the melted snow.

WHAT WE SAW:

People, kayakers, ducks, and beautiful scenery.  After we went on our hike we walked along the towpath and then walked down to view the amazing Falls.

LIVE AND LEARN:

We went on the hike late in the afternoon and as we were finishing our walk the sun started to go down fast and it got really cold.  We probably should have started the hike a little earlier so that we could have hiked Billy Goat Trail Sections B and C.  Now we’ll know for next time!
[info]Don’t forget to check out the main attraction….The Great Falls![/info]


SHOW ME THE DOUGH:

Fuel cost of trip: 30 miles round trip = $3.00
Park fee: $5.00

GRAND TOTAL: $8.00


PHOTOS: