Wild Horses of Assateague

 I wanted to see the horses on Assateague Island via my bike. Started in the early evening from the northern entrance visitor's center. I crossed the bridge to the island, it was very windy on the bridge. As I started on the island the wind was just enough to keep the local insect population away.

The island has a mix of paved trails and on road riding for bikes. I normally don't care for on road riding but here the roads were lightly traveled with a 25 mph speed limit. The roads with more traffic had a wood guard rail to separate the road from the bike trail.

Once on the island you turn right to access most of the island. Straight has a beach and camping access. Immediately after the right turn the trail has a crosswalk to get to the far side of the road where the trail resumes.

Within the first mile after the turn I see several cars parked on the shoulder. Sure enough there were four horses about 150 yards away toward the bay. Another mile or less cars were stopped in the road. Here the horses were on trail, the road and the shoulder of the road. Another mile or so I arrived at the gate for the national seashore. This part is $25 per car for entry but free for people on bikes. No parking before this so you have to ride from the visitor center.

After the gate the bike trail veers toward the camping area. Here I spotted several more horses walking amongst the campers. I turned around at this point due to approaching darkness. I returned the next day after a ride on the Ocean City boardwalk where we stayed. After my ride my wife and I drove to the southern entrance. The two entrances are about an hour car ride between them. You are not able to get from one to the other on the island except perhaps by walking.  

The southern entrance is via Chincoteague. This is a developed island that also has wild horses. Crossing to Assateague you again have a fee for entry with a car. This was $10. Here the bike path was under tree cover. It looked very pleasant but sadly I did not have a chance to ride here. A bit further there is a very long beach. We did spot some horses in the distance but we were not here long.

We headed back north and entered the northern entrance with the car. My wife was able to see horses up close as I did on my bike ride. We stayed in Ocean City and on the way back stopped at a roadside BBQ stand, delicious.

For more information see National Park Service or Assateague Guide.

For a video of my May 2021 bike ride visit my YouTube channel, Mark's Bike Tock.

SRT Bartram Section

This section of Schuylkill River trail runs north from Hamburg, PA to the Auburn Bridge that is currently closed for construction. The southern end begins at the State Street Trailhead in Hamburg, PA. The trail almost immediately turns into a steep incline ramp to a former railroad bridge over the river. After crossing the river you descend a ramp to Industrial Drive. Ride the shoulder about a hundred feet with out crossing the road and the trail turns back toward the river. The wooded area along the river has a trail surface of dirt/fine gravel which is smooth and firm. A short way up the trail you pass under I&*. This area was under construction when I rode in May, 2021. I was able to ride through the construction without any delays.

As you approach the Kernsville Trailhead you pass a wetlands area where I spotted many birds. The Kernsville Trailhead has a large parking area, picnic tables and a porta potty. From the trail head the trail passes over railroad tracks and under route 61. Looking down from the trail you can see an active rail line that goes to Port Clinton. The Port Clinton rail station was built in the 1990s to resemble railroad stations of an earlier time. The Appalachian Trail crosses the SRT in this area.

This segment of trail is about 6 miles not including on road trail south of the State Street Trailhead. There are additional sections of trail north of the Auburn Bridge, some on road, some off road.

For more information about the Schuylkill River Trail visit https://schuylkillriver.org/ 

Watch a video of my ride on Mark's Bike Tock on YouTube

View south from the Kernsville Desilting Basin Trailhead

Closed as of May, 2021 for construction on Auburn bridge

Port Clinton

Route 61 underpass