Assateague Island National Seashore is located on the East Coast along the Atlantic Ocean in Maryland and Virginia, Assateague Island is the largest natural barrier island ecosystem in the Middle Atlantic states region that remains predominantly unaffected by human development.
Assateague Island encompasses a 37-mile-long barrier island, adjacent marsh islands and waters in Maryland and Virginia, and the Assateague Island Visitor Center on the Maryland mainland. 41,346 acres of land and water are within the seashore’s boundaries. The island consists of three public areas; Assateague Island National Seashore, Assateague State Park, and Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge.
Of course the main attraction of the park are the feral Assateague Ponies and the introduced Sika Deer.
Evidence of the horse’s presence is also prevalent in the park.
After several family trips to the seashore I decided to really experience the park with some buddies of mine. We hiked to a backcountry campsite deep into the park for a five day stay. A couple of caveats first the path to the backcountry campsite is on loose sand and after 4 or 5 miles hiking with a heavy back it can be quite tiring. And the reason your pack is so heavy is that all of the water in the park is brackish and so all water for drinking and cooking must be carried in with you. The park is also a prime spot for Lyme disease and one of my hiking partners did contract the disease while in the park. The experience is very much worth it though. Sitting on the beach with no one else for miles or sitting near the marsh and watching the horses is one of the most relaxing and contemplative few days of my life.