Posts Tagged ‘beach
With our trip to the 88th Annual Chincoteague Pony Swim & Auction over I thought it would be fun to go back and recap all of our adventures on the island during the week.
This year we decided to head down on Sunday morning with the ponies (instead of our usual monday morning departure) so that we could see the Annual Beach Walk – something I had never seen before.
On the way onto Chincoteague we stopped at the fairgrounds to set-up our chairs for the auction on Thursday. Last year someone moved our chairs – so I wasn’t going to let that happen this year…
I may have gone a little crazy with the rope! But after having knee surgery earlier this year I knew I couldn’t last standing all day.
We then dropped off Minnow and Boomer at the Pony Centre and readied ourselves to attend the beach walk the next day.
Based on what I had read on the Pony Swim Guide, we had to be at the Assateague Island Beach by 6am on Monday morning in order to see the ponies walk the beach. Driving over the bridge to Assateague, it’s $8 for a day pass, which allows you to park your car in the beach lot and walk up towards the ocean.
Tip for next year: Bring a beach chair with you! You can stake out a spot to watch the walk along the beach as the saltwater cowboys bring the northern herd down the beach to join the ponies in the southern corral. We ended up waiting over an hour for the walk to take place, with the ponies arriving at our spot on the beach around 7:30am. But the nice part is that this event is not hot or buggy and you don’t have to stand in swamp water to enjoy it. My suggestion is to pack some breakfast, bring a chair, and be prepared to wait a little – but it was totally worth it!
This year the beach walk came along with lots of fog due to a rainstorm from the night before.
Afterwards you can follow the herd back to the southern corral and view all of the ponies in one place – we opted to head out though because we had to be back at the Pony Centre to feed our hungry ponies.
Tomorrow I’ll be back to share how the ponies did with their first performances of the week at the Pony Centre!
You can check out all the photos from the beach walk, pony swim and auction HERE. They are also available for purchase!
On Monday we decided to pack up the ponies and Ammo the Dachshund and head to Cape Henlopen in Delaware to ride on the beach. We had never been there before, but heard they allowed beach riding until late April.
Blitz and Boomerang have been to the beach before when we took our ride on Assateague Island in Virginia last fall.
In fact Boomerang was so excited about returning he couldn’t even make it all the way to the beach before taking a roll in the sand.
This time Minnow stayed at home (sorry Minnow) and we brought along my sister’s mare, Jet, and this was her first time on the beach. Jet was a bit nervous about the waves at first but eventually relaxed some, we even worked up to some fun galloping/racing along the beach.
After taking the ponies on our ride we picked up Ammo at the trailer and took them on a run/walk in the ocean.
As you can see it was extremely windy that day and had it been warmer I would have ventured further into the ocean with Boomerang.
Understandably Boomer was a bit nervous at first about going too far into the ocean – waves coming at you can be a scary thing when you aren’t sure what they are. But with a bit of clicker training I eventually had him encompassed in some waves.
Blitz was really fun to watch on the beach – he looked just like a wild stallion, so pretty!
Dramatic Boomer rolled about 6 times on the beach (aside from being cued to lay down & sit) – and he could of cared less who or what was next to him as long as he could feel the wet sand on his body.
The ponies weren’t the only ones to have a good time on the beach though. Ammo thoroughly enjoyed himself even if he did get a little wind/sand blown. It’s a drag being so short sometimes.
To check out more of our photos from our beach adventure visit our Facebook Page.
These two tomato sauce jars filled with sand might not look like much to you, but to me they hold much significance. See back when I visited Assateague Island at the end of October (2011) with all three of my Chincoteague Ponies – I took a little piece of the island with me. I collected these jars of sand from the beach – as a way to always keep a little part of the island with me.
My little jars of sand weren’t much to look at these past few months, but a little visit to the antique shop, and $5 later they had a pretty (beach worthy) glass jar to call home.
Now my Assateague sand sits happily on my shelf at home with my jars of sand from Belize and Nicaragua and everytime I look at it I’m reminded of the special trip I took with all three of my boys!
Last weekend the ponies and Ammo the Dachshund went on a very special trip. We rounded everyone up and made the 4 hour trek down to Assateague Island, Virginia to ride on the beach with our friends from the Chincoteague Pony Centre.
I’ve been waiting my whole life to make this trip and ride on the beach with my ponies, and I was thrilled to be able to share this trip with Minnow, Blitz, Boomerang, Ammo and my mom.
We left behind a freak October snowstorm in PA on Saturday to head to the rainy (but atleast not snowy) island. We were fortunate to have a place for the ponies to stay at a friends farm and on Sunday morning we drove the ponies out to the island for their very first beach ride.
For Minnow it was a sort of homecoming as he was born on the island 18 years ago, but for Blitz and Boomerang it was a completely new experience.
I’ve been to the Assateague beach before, but riding across the dunes on horseback was an entirely new and amazing experience. I can’t even begin to describe how beautiful it was, the sun glistening off the ocean as the huge waves came crashing down all around us. We even witnessed two bald eagles taking flight off the beach.
All the ponies dipped their feet into the ocean and seemed utterly at home on the island, a special place that they are all tied to. My mom and I vowed that this would not be the last time we galloped along the beach with our boys.
After our 2 hour ride I took the opportunity to take as many pictures as possible of the ponies as the waves crashed down behind them. I even broke out their painting easel and Minnow’s super hero ensemble.
As Minnow began to enthusiastically pose along the beach he started to draw a small crowd. People began asking questions until someone in the crowd recognized who he was. I felt like we were being followed by the paparazzi as cameras flashed around us and people exclaimed that they were meeting a celebrity. I’m sure Minnow was feeling very important.
Boomerang also got his turn to shine as I asked him to laydown on the beach – and he happily obliged even as the ocean waves rolled towards him. I even got him to sit, a trick we have only just begun working on. Boomer really is an amazing pony and so willing to do almost anything I ask of him.
Blitz took his turn in front of the camera and showed off what a super model he is. I’ve always said he’s the most gorgeous of our ponies and he definitely did not disappoint. Blitz also had a very special experience as we were down visiting, because his mom was on the island (and also Blitz & Boomer’s sire).
We got to meet Tidewater Fable aka L’Eggs, Blitz’s beautiful solid bay dam. We instantly realized where Blitz got his looks from, and also his timid tenancies. I dreamed of L’Eggs nickering and Blitz calling back with an enthusiastic “MOM!” – although of course none of that happened and I’m pretty sure neither even knew the other was there. I can dream though!
After our beach ride we trailered the ponies over to Pony Pines for their end of the year fun show. By this point the ponies were getting very good at loading and unloading on our new 3 horse step-up trailer. It was great practice for them and by the end of the trip they were pros at trailer loading.
At the fun show my mom and I entered in a handful of the fun classes. We won the ribbon race as well as the hilarious wheelbarrow race (where one rider pushed the other in a wheelbarrow while leading a pony). I also took Boomerang in their version of the Extreme Cowboy Race. Boomer impressed me by doing a water ditch jump, mastering a massive bridge, navigating through brush and even jumping a scary black plastic tube. I was very proud of him as he galloped across the hilly terrain course they had created behind the farm.
Ironically immediately following we entered into the Chincotaegue Pony Pleasure Class – I should have foreseen how amped up Boomer would be after racing through the hills. Lets just say we were done for as soon as they asked us to canter and Boomer went bronco bucking around the arena. I had to laugh.
At the end of the evening Minnow got a chance to shine as he dressed up in his Super Hero Costume with best pal Ammo (aka Rocket Dog) for the costume class. They came home with a blue for the most unique costume and I think both of them were very pleased with themselves.
Before we headed home on Sunday we took one last trip out to Assateague to get some more pictures and enjoy the view. It was such an amazing trip and I hope it won’t be our last!
A special thanks to all of our friends who made it possible for us to visit!
You can check out more photos from our trip on our facebook page. I should be back soon with some more photos and videos to share too!