Sinepuxent Bay

I am going camping on Assateague Island this month and thought I would take our kayaks and paddle around Sinepuxent Bay. Any suggestions or concerns I should be aware of? My family are advanced beginners, so I just want to have my ducks in a row. I am aware that each kayak needs a whistle on it, but I didn’t know if there was anything else that is required (other than PFD’s).

Other stuff
Beyond the mandatory PFD and whistle, some things you should think about taking: water, snack (if you’re going to be out for any length of time) sunscreen, hats.

Depending on your skill levels and how aggressive you may be: skirt, pump, paddle float (assuming you know how to use these), spare paddle, tow line. If it’s just a relaxing family paddle close to shore you may not need these, but if you’re venturing into open water, they’re important to have, and it’s important to know how to use them. If you haven’t practiced rescues and re-enters, don’t go out in the rough stuff.

I haven’t paddled Sinepuxent Bay, but Assawoman Bay just to the north can have jellyfish (sea nettles to the locals) this time of year, so you might ask around locally before you put in. An unintended swim could leave you somewhere between itchy to miserable!

Thank you
Thanks for the tips and the jellyfish warning. We are not going on the rough stuff. I know I am not ready for that yet. I think I will get a tow line though.

good time to go
The jelly fish are indeed out. I go there most weekends and the last two we have noticed more than usual. If you are camping bayside or in the primative sites I would suggest bug stuff. It has been a little colder at night and that will help some, but the skeeters are bad during the summer once you are on land. The water is pretty shallow in the bay and generaly you will not get any waves, but the wind can be brutal especialy in the late afternoon. There are a lot of places that are sheltered if the wind is from the south or east. I would not suggest you go north of the bridge. There will be more boat traffic, and you have to paddle five or more miles is you want to land on the beach. The area is off limits for the plovers. plovers.

navigation skill
Make sure you have a good map & compass and maybe GPS also. Out in those tidal mud flats and poking in & out of the guts, everything starts to look the same. You might consider putting in at the Ferry Landing on the NPS side and paddling down to Tingles Island and back to see a bit of the wild side of Assateague.

Be prepared for mosquitoes and hope for a breezy campsite… some have sworn off camping there outside of winter.

Can I get a map from the campground? If not, is there a good place to get it from? Last thing I want to do is get myself and my mother in law, who is going with me, turned around and lost.

Maps should be available on line at the parks web site. It will cover the camp grounds and the few roads that are in the park. You should be able to get a map of the primative camp sites when you fill out your back country permit. That map can help you navigate better. I have not used a map in ages since I go their so often. At low tides some of the guts drain, but you should have no problems staying out of trouble in the main bay. The only problem I have is finding the inside passage from Tingles to Pine Tree. It is easy to find the other way, but many dead ends around Tingle. Most maps you find may be some what out dated. Hurricane Sandy did make some alterations in the ares, but nothing dramatic.