Things to Do When the Temperature Drops
With the holidays behind us, we here on Cape Cod have a few months to enjoy the quite before the busy Summer is once again upon us. We have the chance to revel in the beauty and wonder that is Cape Cod in the Winter. Here are just a few examples of outdoor activities you can participate in and that the Goose Hummock can help you with.
Hiking, Bird & Seal Watching
Probably the best thing the Cape is known for is its beaches. With over 400 miles of shoreline, a spot for scenic beauty is just a couple of miles away from wherever you are at. Even with respites of warm, Spring-like weather which is perfect for beach walks, the Cape shoreline covered is snow can be breathtaking. Snowcapped dunes and iced over ponds and marshes are at every turn, providing spectacular views of nature’s frosted beauty.
Beach walks, nature trails and scenic overlooks are filled with views of the ocean, bays and ponds of the area. Each with flora and fauna unique to the Northeast. Many migratory birds make Cape Cod a regular stop off in addition to the year-round feathered residents. Bird watchers can catch glimpses of Common Terns, Piping Plovers, Red Tailed Hawks, Great Blue Herons, Kingfishers or the occasional Great Snowy Owl. It is almost impossible to walk the Outer Beaches with out encountering seals. With the exploding population on Monomoy, and in spite of the visiting sharks, seals can be seen very close to shore up and down the beach from Truro to Chatham and even on the Bay side beaches. Please, leave beached seals alone. They are just sunning themselves and are protected by state and federal law. At times, even whales can be spotted from shore. If you do happen upon a stranded or injured seal, dolphin or sea turtle, please call IFAW’s Marine Mammal Rescue at (508) 743-9548. The Goose Hummock stocks many sizes and brands of binoculars to help you in this wonderful activity and enjoy the views the area has to offer.
Although it does not happen every year, when the ponds of the Cape do safely freeze over, it opens up a whole new season for area anglers. Of course, safety of on the ice is paramount when venturing out. Please see the chart for safe ice thickness. NEVER WALK ON SALTWATER ICE!
Most of the ponds are stocked in the Spring and Fall with Rainbow, Tiger and Brown Trout in addition to the native Pickerel, Pan Fish and, of course, Large and Smallmouth Bass. Fishing holes that were accessible only by boat in warmer weather, can now be walked to with all of your gear. Ice fishing can be as involved or as simple as you would like to make it. From setting up a complete “Bob House” with everything you need to stay on the ice a while to simply cutting a hole in the ice and dropping a line, the area kettle ponds have something for everybody.
The Goose Hummock is your ice fishing headquarters with everything you’ll need like augers, picks, lures and rods. We also have cold weather apparel and boot and hand warmers to help with the time on the ice.
If you have never experience the thrill of digging for clams on the Cape and bringing home dinner for the family you are truly missing out of a wonderful activity for the entire family. Clamming Quahogs, Little Necks, Steamers and more in the cold can be a little more daunting but just as rewarding. A permit is required and can be obtained at your town offices. Prices and area restrictions may vary. Some towns also have temperature restrictions on “dry raking” in place. Please check with your local Shellfish Constable for more information.
The Goose, again can outfit you with everything you will need. In addition to carrying R.A. Gibbs hand made clam rakes, made right here on Cape Cod, we have a full line of waders, boots and foul weather gear to help you brave the elements while digging up dinner.
So, in conclusion, the winter doesn’t have to be a time to tuck in by the fire and wait for the Robbins to return. There is a plethora of beautiful and exciting things to do on Cape Cod in the Winter. Get out there!