Friday, May 15, 2009

Wellfleet Launchpad: Cape Cod Seashore

Directions: Click here for Google map

The Wellfleet Launchpad is a beautiful section of open, sandy beach on Cape Cod that also happens to be a launching point for hang gliders. It is located in an area called Cahoon Hollow in Wellfleet. At first, it doesn't look like much, but it turned out to be a fantastic place to bring your dog and become a beach bum for a day!

The parking lot is located at the top of a dune, overlooking the magnificent open sea of Cape Cod. Some people just pull into the parking lot for a few minutes to take in the fantastic view! There is beautiful sand and open sea for miles. But the real fun comes when you get out of your car with a picnic lunch in one hand and your dog's leash in the other. Hike down the dune to the beach and spend a few hours breathing in the fresh, salty air. Maybe you'll even see a hang glider take off and fly overhead!

When we went in April there was no one on the beach, even though it was a gorgeous day. I highly recommend visiting Cape Cod in the off-season, because you can often find these amazing natural wonders and have them all to yourself! Plus, there are some doggie restrictions that kick in during the summer months (see below for details).

Here are the positive features:
  • Miles and miles of flat, gorgeous, clean beach to walk and play
  • It's often secluded, so you can have a private picnic and nap
  • You can surfcast for striped bass and bluefish right from the shore
  • The unique Cape Cod dunes are unlike any other beach in the country
  • Large restrooms are conveniently located in the parking lot (but closed in winter)
  • A great place for seashell hunting (we found lots of neat ones)
  • Off the beaten path, but shops & restaurants are a short drive
  • No ticks! In fact, we didn't see one bug the whole day.
  • You might get to watch a hang glider pilot launch and fly!
  • A gorgeous place to watch the sun rise (if you're a morning person)
  • Unlike the "bay side" of Cape Cod, Cahoon Hollow offers that satisfying rough surf sound of crashing waves
Negative features:
  • During the summer, 9am-5pm, no dogs are allowed on the beach (for all Wellfleet restrictions, click here)
  • You must bring all food and fresh water in with you (check out Box Lunch in Wellfleet for your picnic)
I highly recommend that you take a drive along the magnificent Cape Cod seashore someday and check out this great spot!

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