Fall in Chincoteague Virginia
Visitors to Chincoteague Island will find fall to be one of best times to visit. The beaches are still a must visit attraction and surprisingly, the water often remains warm enough for swimming thru September.
The trip from major metropolitan areas to Chincoteague Island can be extremely enjoyable during the fall. Traffic is much lighter and the highways are lined with wildflowers in bloom and maturing crops. Farmers markets along the way have a wealth of local produce in fall. Summer produce such as tomatos, peppers, corn, beans, melons and others are still available, and are joined by fall harvests of apples, pumpkins, squash, greens, cabbage, honey and other fruits, vegetables and specialty foods.
Arriving on Chincoteague and Assateague Islands, visitors will notice seasonal changes. Gone is the humidity, hordes of biting insects and bumper to bumper traffic. Summer gulls have matured, turning from brown to white and the ducklings of spring are now fully grown and exploring the town. Birds of all kinds are on the move as the Atlantic Flyway begins to come to life. Experienced birdwatchers will notice the changes and take to the marshes and refuges with cameras, spotting scopes, notepads and easels.
Birding enthusiasts will also want to learn about National Waterfowl Week at Chincoteague Wildlife Refuge. This once a year event includes driving tours on the Wildlife Loop, guided walks and an open house of special events and programs by the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge. The event spans 9 days beginning the Saturday before Thanksgiving and going to the Sunday after Thanksgiving.
Beach lovers have the beaches more to themselves, and many decide to explore Assateague Island more extensively. A walk in either direction following one of the late summer hurricanes may reveal a new crop of shells along the shoreline. Several types of whelks, surf clams, scallops, cockles and other shells wash up, mixed in with mysteries of the ocean such as sand dollars, devil's purses, driftwood and sometimes even coins or other antiquities.
Fishermen enjoy fall fishing around Chincoteague. For offshore enthusiasts, some of the best catches of the year come in late September thru November. These include yellowfin tuna, wahoo, mahi mahi and other pelagic species that school up in their migrations back southward. Similarly, flounder, croaker, trout and other species form schools and exit the bays. Just off the coast, these inshore species gather and feed heavily before leaving Virginia waters. Surf fishermen also find fishing improved as local fish migrate down the beaches. In addition to smaller species, surf anglers begin to fish for the monsters of the beaches, as striped bass, red drum, black drum and sandbar sharks all make their way down the Virginia coastline.
Shoppers will be ecstatic while touring the shops on the island. End of season sales offer some excellent bargains and most shops offer a unique variety of holiday-related gifts. Fall festivals are another excellent option for shoppers. Several events feature artists and crafters selling unique items, many focusing on local wildlife, fall activities and holiday season specialties.
Submitted by: cin