Monday, August 25, 2014

Hammonasset Beach State Park

Our second beach for the day was the Hammonasset Beach State Park near Madison, Connecticut.  We arrived just a few minutes after they closed the Nature Center which was a shame, however, they left the restrooms open so that was a blessing!

Across the street from the Nature Center is 
the entrance to the beach

The Snack Shack was still open after we arrived and we were looking forward to at least a hot dog for dinner, however, since they were going to close soon, the only thing they would sell us was soda, nachos or ice cream.  We decided on the nachos and a coke since it was the closest thing to food.  At least it held us for a few hours!

Nice sand here at Hammonasset

I stepped into the water and got the shock of my life.  The water was absolutely freezing!  Then when I tried to get out of the water, my crocs filled with sand and rock and I sunk into the sand until it covered my foot.  It was hard to get out and harder yet to get my crocs cleaned out and back on my feet!  The water was so nice and warm a few miles down the road at Silver Sands!

The Beach Snack Shack

There was a Life Guard on Duty when we arrived

A walk along the shore of the Long Island Sound

A cormorant diving for dinner

Another beautiful Salt Marsh

Little Blue Heron

Snowy Egret and Little Blue Heron

Little Blue Heron

Snowy Egret

Young Lovers Waiting For The Sunset

Well, there isn't driftwood like on the West Coast 
but we did find one big Log!

He found something to eat!

After we left the beach we were in search of somewhere to get something to eat.  We figured we could find somewhere in New Haven where Yale College is located.  Instead we ran into a huge restaurant fire that blocked our efforts to get out of town.  Our GPS refused to find another way out of town and it took us over an hour to get around the fire.  Once we did, we found a Wendy's and enjoyed a salad before returning to the campground. 

I'd call this a Five Alarm Fire!

Silver Sands State Park

It was a beautiful day today so we decided to venture a little further out and check out the beaches in Connecticut.  Our first stop was Silver Sands State Park, near Milford, Connecticut.  What a beautiful park it is!

Salt Marshes along the Long Island Sound

This park has a lot of wonderful Board Walks.  This one went to the beach from the parking area but you can actually see everything without getting into sand or rock by using the boardwalks.  Of course, I had to get my feet in the water so we didn't stay on them all the time!

A couple of crabs

When we saw this sign, we were excited.  We've seen signs in other areas that said that Piping Plovers nested there, but we've never really seen them.  They Piping Plovers are on the Endangered Species List and their breeding habitats are slowly becoming obsolete.  

These people are walking across a small sandbar that leads to an island.  There are warning signs that tell you not to walk on the sand bar when it is covered with water but the sign was pretty much ignored when we arrived and the bar was almost completely covered.  Later on in the afternoon, the tides shifted and there was a lot bigger sandy/rocky walk that extended to the island.

Lots of Sail Boats Out Today

Someone was born with a romantic gene!!

The Long Island Sound

More of the extensive boardwalk system in the park

Salt Water Marsh

This area is the inlet/outlet for the Long Island Sound Water to enter and recede from the Marshes.  It is amazing how fast the water flows here.

A Piping Plover - there were quite a few of them on the beach!

Ring-billed Gull

The sand bar widened and created a nice path to the island

I spent quite a bit of time on the sand bar picking up shells and rocks for a couple of craft projects that I'm going to work on.  I brought home quite a haul.

Standing on the sand bar

You can see the person clear out in the water.  He is still on the sand bar but once the water covers the bar, you are walking it at your own risk.

We grabbed a woman near us who took a 
picture of us on the sand bar

Nice beach houses