Montauk, the tip of Long Island

In the end of the summer season, I had a spontaneous beach trip to Montauk State Park with a couple of friends. Thanks to Sergei, we traveled to the beach in style – on a four-seat airplane 🙂 I was always tempted to explore the tip of Long Island just because it looked very pretty on the satellite view in maps, and after this day trip I now want to return there and camp out.

aerial view 0000 Long Island, New York, USA

En route, we flew above Cold Spring Harbor, where we kayaked several times a year ago, when my friend Sasha worked there and had access to kayaks – great memories, and it was nice to get a bird eye view of the place.

aerial view 0000 Montauk Point Park, Long Island, New York, USA

Upon approach to Montauk airport, we got a bird eye view of the tip of Long Island too. It was pretty obvious why I would love the place: combination of tranquil sea and long sand beach, forest and lake.

view 0000 Montauk Point Park, Long Island, New York, USA

We walked to the beach straight from the airport and headed toward Oyster Bay.

view 0001 Montauk Point Park, Long Island, New York, USA

There were a few people  – some came by car, some by boat, some by horse… and some by plane 😉

view 0002 Montauk Point Park, Long Island, New York, USA

One place had a sort of surreal appeal to it because of the purple sand and purple flowers growing next to it!

naturist 0000 Montauk Point Park, Long Island, New York, USA

Obviously, I wanted to take a picture in that paradisiacal spot in my paradisiacal suit (even though this was not an official nudist beach).

view 0003 Montauk Point Park, Long Island, New York, USA

We soon reached Oyster Bay and the sign saying that 4×4 vehicles needed a permit beyond that point. One can only wonder why from a formal standpoint something as destructive to the beach as cars was permitted, but a harmless naked human body would be illegal. (I don’t mean that cars would destroy the beach entirely, but they do crush seashells and definitely leave a much more noticeable footprint,  which you don’t necessarily want to see at such a pristine beach, and which might contribute to erosion.)

view 0005 Montauk Point Park, Long Island, New York, USA

Oyster Bay had a nice stretch of flat wet sand which was perfect for playing frisbee, as it was also protected from wind by the dune.

view 0004 Montauk Point Park, Long Island, New York, USA

On the way back, we hiked through the forest for a bit. There were a lot of grapes but they were not ripe at that time. Beware that it is also full of ticks, but then again it’s easier to spot them on the naked body than under clothes 😉

kayaking in Cold Spring Harbor

As Juan wrote in his first blogpost, kayaking, although often overlooked, is probably the easiest outdoor activity to practice in the buff without anyone noticing. It’s hard to tell whether one wears shorts, speedos or… nothing 😉

Last sumer, I had a couple of fun kayak trips with a few buddies in and around Cold Spring Harbor in Long Island.

Cold Spring Harbor hosts the world-famous laboratory that contributed to the discovery of the double helix structure of DNA. Most of the land along Cold Spring Harbor and Oyster Bay is privately owned, but you can definitely explore the area by the sea.

Once you reach the edge of the Oyster Bay, you could head out to the open waters of Long Island Sound

or turn Eastwards in the direction of Caumset State Park.

This is how it looks from the air (these photos were taken on another occasion, obviously).

To reach the beach of Caumset Park, you need to paddle around the sand spit that is a part of private land. You won’t see many people on the shore, perhaps a lonely fisherman.

Once you go around the tip of the sand spit, you will see a beautiful beach of Caumset State Park.

It is surrounded by lush forest which gives it almost tropical appearance.

Cormorants seemed to to be the only ones to welcome us.

The beach doesn’t see many visitors, it has a touch of the lost world…

Which also meant we could stay there as nature intended, without clothes 🙂

The sand cliffs appeared to be even prettier than from afar, revealing different shades of orange and pink.

Some shorebirds, possibly sand martins, have a colony there; my friend Martin :D, who climbed the cliffs couldn’t confirm what they were, we didn’t see any birds leaving the nests.

We enjoyed viewing the scenery for a bit and strolled along the beach.

Low tide revealed a lot seaweed, that tried to anchor at anything solid.

We found a flat white rock that was perfect for a lunch break,

and a golfinch was pleasing our ears while we took a nap…

On another occasion, we actually did some jumps instead of a nap 🙂

After the nap, we discover that a storm was on our way. The forecast for the day was ambiguous, but we were not anticipating to paddle in the sea during a thunderstorm!

We prepared to leave hastily, but as soon as we got on water, the sky started clearing ahead of us and we just tried to escape from the menacing clouds.

It got quiet again.

The storm seemed to get sucked into the Atlantic Ocean over Long Island.

The only place where we got a bit worried again, was around the tip of the sand spit that I mentioned above, because it gets quite strong currents and waves during tide change.

But it wasn’t a challenge after all, and we got back safely. We definitely look forward to more kayaking!