Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge and Assateague Island National Seashore cover 14,000 acres of beach, dunes, marsh, and maritime forest - a wonderful, unspoiled area. A major storm in 1962 wiped out all development on Assateague Island, and it was set aside as a national seashore. The island is also home to the Chincoteague Ponies, descendants of horses brought to the island in the 17th century and later made famous by Marguerite Henry's book, Misty of Chincoteague. (Detailed map and photos below.)
Location: Assateague Island, Accomack County (See map)
Distance: 6.3 miles of paved trails, more on park roads
Support and Advocacy:
Chincoteague Natural History Association
The refuge reminds us of Florida's Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge , with one difference - the wonderful paved trails! We biked on the Wildlife Loop, Woodlands Trail, and others. Hiking-only trails are generally unpaved. Biking is not restricted to the refuge, Chincoteague Island is adding bike trails as well but we focused on the refuge in Virginia (the northern portion of Assateague Island is in Maryland). Due to mosquitoes, not recommended in the summer.
There were about 30 ponies milling around at the pony viewing platform, but accidentally deleted the photos and can't retrieve! Corral is for a roundup held each year, horses auctioned to thin the herd. More about the Chincoteague Ponies .
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