Message from the Superintendent
The planning team is currently in the final stages of drafting the General Managment Plan and beginning the internal review process which includes reviews and revisions. More »
Hurricane Sandy Photos on flickr
View images from the Maryland and Virginia districts of Assateague Island National Seashore on our flickr site. More »
Temporary Backcountry Campsite Restrictions - Effective June 7, 2013 there is a complete beach closure in effect from km 22.0 south to km 25.5 to protect nesting birds. Hikers leaving from North Beach in Maryland can access Little Levels, Tingles Island & Pine Tree campsites. Hikers leaving from Virginia can access State Line, Pope Bay and Green Run campsites. Hikers cannot travel between the State Line and Little Levels campsites. Bayside campsites are open but visitors camping in Bayside campsites cannot travel/hike into any area between Km 22 – km 25.5.
Assateague Island National Seashore has two oceanside and four bayside camping areas for visitors who wish to backpack or paddle the island. All backcountry campsites are located in Maryland; no camping is permitted in the Virginia district. The distance traveled to backcountry sites from the Ranger Station in Maryland range from 2 1/2 to 13 miles. If traveling from the Toms Cove Visitor Center in Virginia the nearest campsites are State Line and Pope Bay, each at 12 1/2 miles.
Backcountry Campsite Descriptions
Obtaining a Backcountry Permit
Due to sudden and severe changes in weather, advance reservations are not accepted. Permits are issued on a first-come, first-served basis on the day of departure.
Please consider your level of experience and weather conditions and adjust your start time accordingly.
Please check with radio, television, and the internet for up-to-date information on local weather patterns. Paddlers should obtain information from the National Weather Service regarding small craft advisories for "Coastal Waters from Fenwick Island to Chincoteague Island" at http://www.erh.noaa.gov/akq/index.php or by calling (410) 641-3030.
In Maryland, canoe rentals are available on the island. Call 410-726-3217 or visit http://www.mdcoastalbays.org/ from Memorial Day through Labor Day. In the off-season, rentals are often available in the local area. In Virginia, canoe rentals are available from several local vendors. Call the Chincoteague Chamber of Commerce at (757) 336-6161 for more information. Many outfitters will not rent canoes or kayaks during a small craft advisory.
Did You Know?
...that instead of needing to keep her eggs warm, the beach-nesting piping plover will stand over her eggs on hot days to shade them and keep them cool.