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Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area at Sunset Beach


Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area at Sunset Beach in Cape May, New Jersey

Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area is located in Cape May County, New Jersey. The area features 1,159 acres nature preserve with a hiking trail along with 1 1/2 miles of shoreline that runs from New England Road to Sunset Blvd. It's managed by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, a division of Fish and Wildlife.

The management area offers two different parking areas with one located on New England Road and the other one located at Sunset Beach. We opted to park in the free parking lot at Sunset Beach. If you're unfamiliar with Sunset'll find 2 gift shops, a grille that offers food and mini golf located on the property. It's within walking distance to the World War II Fire Lookout Tower.

Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area at Sunset Beach in Cape May, New Jersey

On the day that we visited the weather was hot. The sky was hazy...but also smoky due to the Canadian wildfires back in early June 2023. You can see the haze in the sky when viewing our photographs. You could definitely smell smoke in the air throughout the day. By evening...a storm front rolled in and pushed the haze and smoke out to sea. 

Visitors may sit on the beach (no beach tags are required) but no swimming is permitted. Whatever you bring into the Wildlife Managerment need to take out with you. You won't find trash cans, bathrooms, etc. Please keep the area pristine clean!

Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area at Sunset Beach in Cape May, New Jersey

We have visited Higbee Beach many times over the past decade but this time we spotted something new. As we walked up onto the beach facing the Delaware Bay we spotted piles and piles of rocks. We have no idea who piled them up or why it was done. There were hundreds of them! We looked on the internet and couldn't find any information on why this was done. 

The shoreline in this area does have small pebbles, rocks, and seashells...but NOTHING like what we saw that day. A few of the piles of rocks had American flags sticking in them...another pile had a Rosary, and we found one pile that had some seashells (clam shells) mixed into it. All of this was man-made and not a natural occurance.

Our next trip down to the south Jersey Shore will be in a few weeks. We will stop back in to see if any of it has changed. It was definitely "odd" and wasn't there in October 2022, so we're guessing it was something done in Spring of 2023. We'll update this post once we learn more.

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