Hackensack River Canoe & Kayak Club

paddling for over a third of a century

Assateague Island National Seashore
by Lee McQuade

Saturday, September 16-18, 2011

Our tenth annual HRCKC Assateague Island, Maryland trip was not as spectacular as previous visits due to unfavorable weather conditions, however, it is always good to revisit the island.

The group included Charlie, Chris, Dave, Claire, Carolyn, Kathy, Donna, Alice, Susan and Lee.

Most of us arrived on Friday at different intervals, however Charlie and Chris had arrived earlier in the week in Charlie's RV which is an awesome home on wheels. Kathy and Donna had arrived on Thursday and stayed overnight in Ocean City. During the day they helped the local economy by shopping and sightseeing.

The winds on the bay side were rather mild and allowed us to erect our tents without any major problems. Some members of a South Jersey Kayaking group were our neighbors and we had interesting conversations regarding our various club activities.

Friday evening we met at Charlie's campsite for dinner. A campfire completed the atmosphere.

Saturday morning started out with an early walk checking out Sinepauxant Bay to see if we would be able to paddle. Weather conditions were favorable in the morning, however, the afternoon was questionable so we decided to give it a try. Our fellow paddlers from the other club had already departed for their morning paddle. After launching our boats we proceeded to paddle out into the bay.

Along the shore we saw several egrets and herons. Later on in the season snow geese, black ducks, mallards and pintails will winter on the island.

We were able to paddle for a period of time before the winds and rain started and we decided to head back to our starting point. Later on in the afternoon there were white caps on the bay.

Saturday afternoon was spent reading and taking it easy. Some members decided to go into Ocean City for the afternoon and evening. It was not an afternoon for kite flying or swimming in the ocean. Charlie's RV was a haven for the waterlogged.

I had left in the early hours on Sunday to catch the Lewes, Del. ferry to Cape May for a morning of kayaking in Cape May Harbor. The winds were churning up in the bay and it was extremely windy in Cape May. The weather improved as we headed up north on the parkway.

Although not the greatest weekend this year, Assateague is still a unique place to visit. We will give it another try next year.