It's a ways out, but it's never too early to start planning for summer. Please join the us for the first annual Fire Island Blaze>> camping at Watch Hill. This centrally situated venue will give members a chance to enjoy a variety of activities, such as just lounging around soaking up the sun, doing some backcountry hiking (and possible backpacking), or indulging in the gay life of Fire Island at Cherry Hill and Pine Groove.
Available spots will be preferentially assigned to Blaze>> members who have been on a Blaze>> overnight trip before, or have been among the most active members of our group. All members who RSVP will automatically be put on the waiting list.
A little bit about where we will be staying:
Fire Island Watch Hill Camp Grounds:
First and foremost, this is not back country camping. It is more like modified car camping. The Watch Hill Campgrounds are located in the Watch Hill Section of Fire Island about 1/4 mile from the ferry teminal. See the atttached map of Fire Island. So basically whatever you can carry, drag, put in a cart, etc. for 1/4 mile is what you can bring.
For those interested in back country camping on Fire Island see below.
The campsites are only a one minute walk to the beach. The facilities include running water, grills, picnic tables, showers and bathrooms. We will be located minutes from the marina, visitor center, snack bar, Tiki bar and The Pier Restaurant. There are a variety of things to do on & around the campsites site. Friendly dogs are permitted at no extra charge.
For those interested in hiking (we are a backpacking group afterall), the campsites sit at the entrance to Otis Pike Wilderness reserve, where you can explore miles of undeveloped beach, a natural barrier island ecosystem, salt marsh nature trails, back-country hiking, bird watching, 40-foot high dunes with roaming deer,wildflowers, deer trails, old bones, and many natural seaside artifacts all while savoring the solitude. It is one of the Nation's few federally designated oceanfront wilderness areas.
Fire Island Pines & Cherry Grove.
Also, for those interested in checking out the gayer side of the island (we are also a gay group afterall), the two largest gay resort destinations in the NYC area are a short, enjoyable and fairly inexpensive water taxi ride away, or about a 2 miles walk along the beach.
Wilderness Area Backcountry Camping
According to the NPS website backcountry camping (backpacking) is available on a first-come, first-served basis in the Otis Pike Fire Island High Dune Wilderness area. So if you would like to backpack, the campsite would be a good base camp and would serve as a back up accomodation in the event that you cannot get a permit. If you are interested in backcountry camping, I would suggest calling the Wilderness Visitor Center [masked] (daily during the summer; Wednesday through Sunday, year-round)
The campground is accessible via the ferry from ferry terminal in Patchogue NY (this is not the same ferry that runs to Cherry Grove). The ferry is accessible by Long Island RR or by car. More on transportation as the time gets closer.
The permit cost $70. This will be divided evenly amongst the participants. Since there are up to 20 who can attend, the cost per person, will be de minimis.
Should be a fun time. Hope to see you there.