Ocean City Weekend

June 26th, 2008

Last weekend, my family took our annual trip across the state for a long weekend at Ocean City, MD. Along the way, my wife and I tried to get in as many nature-related things that we could because, well, we love the outdoors!

Pocomoke River

On the way over, we detoured near Salisbury, MD to do some hiking and biking at Pocomoke River State Park. I’ve never been to this park before, but as soon as we pulled up we knew we found a great place to spend an afternoon. The river itself was covered with lily pads, a few of them just starting to send up yellow flower buds.

Bald Cyprus Knee

In addition, the parks contains some of the northern most bald cyrus trees on the east coast. I know that there are ones a tad further north in Delaware, but the sign said this is their northern limit. Nevertheless, I always enjoy checking out the various knees that pop up from the water.

Footless Lizard

The only downside of our trip there were more mosquitoes and deer ticks than we would have cared for. I suppose that would explain why we saw so many lizards and toads on the trails.

Sunset Over Bay

Once in Ocean City, one of my favorite pasttimes is crabbing for Maryland Blue Crabs using twine and chicken necks. The crabs are definitely down in recent years, so while the crabbing wasn’t fantastic, the sunset definitely was!

Sand Crab

Walking along the beach, we came across another kind of crab, scurrying quite invisibly across the sand. This guy (above) was no more than 2-3 inches across, but ran like lightning. I’m glad I got him to standstill long enough for a photo.

Assateague Island Horse

Finally, we spent another day clamming on Assateague Island, and came home with our legal limit of clams for quite the feast of fresh steamed clams, fried clamstrips, and New England clam chowder. One of the unique things about Assateague Island is that it is home to a wild colony of horses leftover of several shipwrecks a few centuries ago. (This story is disputed, saying that the horses came from early barrier island settlers, but shipwrecks sound more exciting.) The horses have adapted to the harsh environment of the island and thrive, having to be thinned down to 150 during the famous channel swim to Chincoteague every year.

We had a great little excursion, but I’m now ready to get back to focusing on my aquariums at home.

7 Responses to “Ocean City Weekend”

  1. Rami Says:

    Lovely pictures. I’m always looking forward to your next post. 🙂

    Is that lizard missing the end of his foot?

    Oh wow, you went to Assateague Island? I’ve always wanted to go there, ever since my mother introduced me to Marguerite Henry’s horse stories when I was little. C:

  2. guitarfish Says:

    Thanks Rami! Yes, that lizard was missing his foot, but I had nothing to do with that event! Assateague Island is a great place to go. As long as there’s a nice breeze, the mosquitoes aren’t too bad, and it’s a popular camping destination. The horses are not intimidated by people at all, and are commonly seen in the camping and parking areas. (They don’t like to be approached however)

  3. Rami Says:

    Heh, no, it’s easy to see that the foot was lost awhile ago and is all healed over. The lizard doesn’t seem to miss it. 🙂 Looks like he was posing for you in the picture, too.

    Wow, I wouldn’t have thought they’d not be bothered by people.. do you know if they still do the roundups in the summertime?

    When I get out and about in the world, I’ll be sure to visit there. Chincoteague, Assateague, and Prince Edward Island are some places I want to visit. C:

  4. Phillip Brown Says:

    You have a really good eye for a great photograph and such an obvious love of nature.

  5. guitarfish Says:

    Rami, I believe the volunteer fire department still does the round-ups every year because they are required to keep the size of the herd no bigger than 150 horses. The fire department uses it as a fund raiser. I’ve never seen it, however.

    Thanks Phillip!

  6. Tennessee Mom Says:

    You should make a day trip to Tangier Island in the Chesapeake Bay. I was there when I was a kid, no cars on the island, get there only by ferry. Even as a kid it was exciting.

    My grandmother lived in Salisbury before moving to Rehoboth Beach, DE. I lived in Salisbury for a while too, then moved to Rehoboth Beach before she died.

    I really, really miss the beach! Being landlocked in Tennessee is not fun!

  7. guitarfish Says:

    I’ve heard about Tangier Island, but have never been. The kayaking trails sound like reason enough to visit. I’ll put it on my todo list. Tennessee may not have the beach, but there’s plenty of other nature there. 🙂

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