Sunset over Long Island Sound, Wading River Creek
East of Riverhead, the quiet waters and sandy beaches of Peconic Bay separate the North and South Forks of eastern Long Island – the small towns of Mattituck, Cutchogue, Southold, Greenport and Orient amid the rural farmlands on the north; to the south, the mansions and estates of the rich in Sag Harbor, Southampton, Bridgehampton, East Hampton and Montauk .
Mattituck town beach, where families can still enjoy a sunny July day, looks south on Great Peconic Bay, with Shelter Island to its east. The small fishing harbor at New Suffolk now shelters mostly pleasure boats.
Mid-July, 85 degrees, Sunday afternoon. What better than a trip to the beach! Long Island offers 50+ miles of Atlantic ocean beaches, and for those who like quieter water, Long Island Sound on the Island’s north shore.
Iron Pier Beach, Northville, Town of Riverhead
The Pine Barrens are the Island’s last wilderness – now mainly in a 100,000 acre protected area of woodlands, ponds and streams in Riverhead and Brookhaven townships, the headwaters of the Peconic River and Bay. Pitch pine and oak thrive in the meager sandy soil, a remnant of the coastal forest that once stretched from Cape Cod, MA to Cape May, NJ.
Moriches Bay on LI’s South Shore, eastern neighbor of the Great South Bay, protected by Fire Island. Part of the lagoon and barrier island coast that stretches from Cape Cod to Florida.
40 years ago, LI Bays provided half the US clam harvest and work for thousands of people. Not now.
The Island’s South Shore
Smith Point Beach, Fire Island National Seashore