After driving over 2,500 miles on our Midwest holiday road trip, what could possibly cause us to wake up the very next morning, eat a quick breakfast, and get back in the car? What might be so alluring, so compelling, that we would do more driving after having just driven halfway across the country and back? In a word: seals.
For the better part of a month, there have been reports of seals appearing at Gateway National Park – Sandy Hook. Each year, for a three-month window, harbor seals appear at Sandy Hook, most often when the seals will “haul out” of the water as a break from looking for food at sea. Neither my wife nor I had ever seen seals in the wild, so this had become our most recent quest. After a failed attempt a few weeks before Christmas, my wife had kept an eye on social media for reports of seal activity. On our drive home from Wisconsin, somewhere in central Pennsylvania, my wife excitedly informed me that there had been seal activity spotted that very day. We decided then and there to try again… and this time, we succeeded.
The Seals of Sandy Hook
Before closing, I wanted to offer a pair of mileage updates from a vehicle in my garage, and another that’s deep in the heart of Texas.
Over the past six months, Sandy Hook has been very, very good for spotting wildlife! During the summer, we saw a humpback whale swimming off the coast. On this trip, we finally spotted seals. Add to it deer, eagles, heron, osprey, and hawks, and this national park remains one of our favorite local destinations for exploring nature. Gateway National Recreation Area – Sandy Hook is open daily from 6:00 am – 8:00 pm. While there is no entrance fee to the park, there is a parking fee from Memorial Day weekend until Labor Day for all vehicle traffic.
Thanks for coming along on this special seal-sighting adventure along the open road ahead.