Posted by: sunnyharvy | June 4, 2013

Crowd-Free Cape Cod

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We hadn’t been anywhere in haRVy since we returned from Canada in October, so when the weather forecast predicted local temperatures near 90 degrees for the next four days, we decided it was high time to hit the road for (hopefully) cooler climes on Cape Cod.

It took us nearly all day to get everything organized and loaded back into haRVy, but we managed to finally take off just after 2 pm.

Stop #1: Somerset Creamery in Cataumet. Not exactly en-route, but the short detour for the best ice cream on earth was well worth the extra time. I enjoyed a double dip of almond joy coconut and cranberry mud. Al had his usual coffee flavor. Both were absolutely scrumptious!

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Stop #2: Nickerson State Park (Area 6 Site 84, for my record: 77 – 81 would be OK too.) By 5 o’clock we were parked in a beautiful wooded site in a nearly empty campground just before a brief thunderstorm rolled through.

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Cape Cod is escape enough for most people, but Nickerson SP is an even deeper experience. Far from the traffic, even during the busy season, which this decidedly is not. We knew it wouldn’t be as hectic as mid-summer, but we were delightfully surprised to find just a few visitors everywhere we went.

I can’t say it better, so here’s a description from the park brochure: Travel the road to the upper campgrounds in Nickerson State Park and you may think for a moment that you have been magically transported to the Berkshire Hills or the piney woods of the Carolinas. Nowhere in sight are the sand dunes and salt marshes usually associated with Cape Cod. Instead, you are surrounded by woods that slope down to the banks of eight freshwater ponds. 

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We took a short walk down through the woods down to and along the shore of Cliff Pond before settling in for dinner and a relaxing evening. It felt very good to be aboard haRVy once again.

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After a quiet night, thousands of bird calls and songs woke us early. We headed out to ride the bike trails around the park before the heat of the day got too bad. The hilly paths provided some excellent interval training. After well-deserved showers at the park, we headed to nearly Skaket Beach for lunch where the tidal change seemed nearly as dramatic as what we’d seen in the Bay of Fundy last summer.

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Al never wants to shop when we’re at home, but we had some very good luck in the stores of downtown Orleans where he purchased two pairs of pants and a pair of shoes. Then it was off to Truro where we visited a good friend of Al’s sister who allowed us to camp in the driveway of her rental property.

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Saturday morning we headed out to the Province Lands bike trails that traverse the sand dunes for some additional interval training. We enjoyed lunch at Race Point Beach, visited Herring Cove Beach at the very tip of the Cape, and drove through Provincetown on our way back down to Wellfleet. We headed to the wharf where a Harborfest celebration was taking place. We parked on the pier where we enjoyed a very pleasant view, conversation with a few haRVy gawkers, and dinner.

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We got rather friendly with one group of guys whom we spoke with before and after they went out on a little fishing trip. The owner of the boat invited us to camp overnight on his nearby, somewhat remote property. Finding it much to our liking, we took him up on the offer and enjoyed a quiet, starry night.

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We’d had enough interval training, so the next morning we worked on our endurance hiking on the sandy surface of the Great Island trail before a delicious lobster salad lunch at the waterfront Bookstore Restaurant.

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While reading a Cape Cod visitor guide I discovered a very interesting exhibit at the Heritage Museums & Gardens in Sandwich called “Driving our Dreams” that features a collection of extremely rare mid-century concept cars. Once Al saw that our plans for the afternoon were made and we were off to the museum.

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Oh yeah, I took a ride on the vintage carousel at the museum and we also walked around the extensive gardens.

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Before heading off the Cape we had our dinner of fresh locally caught swordfish and asparagus alongside the Cape Cod Canal. We arrived home with enough time to unload haRVy and watch MadMen.

Weather was quite hot, up to 87 degrees and mostly windy, extremely so on Sunday afternoon.

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Responses

  1. Thanks for writing this up. Nice to have photos with the trip log. Interesting that you call your camper HaRvy, because we call ours the same thing! We are based out of the Truckee, CA area, so doubtful we’ll cross paths, but keep your eyes out when on the road west of the Mississippi!

  2. Love the water feature!

  3. Nice trip !!


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