Great Island Trail- Wellfleet, MA
We enjoyed this trail hike on a weekend trip to outer Cape Cod, which in our opinion is one of the nicest places to visit in the United States during the summer months. While we went to a number of beautiful outdoor places throughout the weekend, the Great Island Trail was one of the most memorable.
|Great Island Trail Marsh View|
What started off as your run of the mill hike along a marsh by the water quickly felt like we were on assignment for the National Geographic Channel. The place was absolutely loaded with Sand Fiddler Crabs. These crabs(the males) are an inch or two in length and feature one giant claw that is over half the size of their body. They live in small holes in the marsh sand and were lined up on the trail by the thousands. They were quite the spectacle to observe, and we found ourselves trying to capture one picture after another of this giant clawed army.
|The Sand Fiddler Crab with its giant claw. If it loses this|
claw, its small claw grows to become the new giant
The hike itself had a lot of variety to it and that’s what made it so enjoyable. There are a couple of different routes you can take ranging from around 4-7 miles depending on how long you’d like to hike for, but in any case it’s a loop hike with one half spanning through a salt marsh and the other half down a beach. Be sure to check the tides before venturing out on this hike as the cape is known to have a large fluctuation between the low and high tide. On a big high tide the marsh trail could be flooded. USHarbors is our go-to site for tide info.
We chose to do the marsh as the first half of the loop and then walked back on the beach. The marsh portion featured a great hiking dynamic with parts having a more open view and of course, Sand Fiddler Crabs, while other parts were more woodsy and winding. The beach was a secluded and vast stretch of coastline featuring great views of the cape Cod Bay, spanning all the way to Provincetown.
|View through the marsh woods|
Enjoy this beautiful loop trial on Outer Cape Cod—And beware of the Sand Fiddler Crabs!
|Return hike on the beach|
Kristy Albano & Matt Pickering