Off Season on the Cape

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It’s chilly, a bit windy but the sky is clear and the sun is brighter than it has been in months on Mayflower Beach. This time of year, the beaches lining the peninsula of Cape Cod are really not much different then they are in mid summer – minus the crowds and hot temps.  Today, disappointment is only felt by a few sluggish seagulls deprived of their afternoon nap and who now have to share the beach with a few uninvited guests.

This is my favorite beach on or off-season is Mayflower Beach located in Dennis Village Route 6A.  The stretch of beach faces the north or Bay Side of Cape Cod. Here, low tides expose never-ending sandbars which allow beach strollers space to roam and feel as if the beach is theirs even in the middle of the summer season.  Mayflower and many of its neighboring beaches are typical of Cape Cod. Most on the Bay Side are hilly and covered with protective and fragile beach grass, lined with soft beige sand and offers visitors miles of surf to walk and safe waters to swim in.

Early spring visitors to the Cape often come because it’s when they can get the lowest hotel and beach rental rates of the year and also can dine at some of the finest and most popular restaurants without reservations.  Your cheap t-shirt shops and fried clam shacks are still boarded up but many things worth visiting usually just shorten their hours or take a few weeks off at the beginning of the year.  Visitors just have to substitute fried clams and mini golf with sushi and a walk on the beach.  This is not a bad thing for many.

The typical spring weather doesn’t arrive to Dennis and the rest of the Cape Cod region until the end of April, but the combination of clear skies and calm winds offer up a good conditions for being outdoors during the cooler months.  Most weather forecasters of Boston have an especially difficult time with figuring out Cape weather anytime of year.    The best way to get an idea of how the weather will be is to check out Cape Cod live cams, check the most local source for news and weather which is the Cape Cod Times and hope for the best.  Whatever is going on weather 03272011685wise in New York City usually will be the same on the Cape in 24 to 48 hours.  It’s New England and the weather on the Cape can change very quickly.  The 10 day forecast isn’t applicable to this area.  It’s like the old saying “If you don’t like the weather then wait five minutes”.

The Cape this time of year works best if visitors have the flexibility to visit on a whim.  There’s usually plenty of accommodation available that can be booked a day or a week ahead since it’s usually pretty quiet before Memorial Day and after Labor Day.  Many of the better hotels, motels and B&B’s which are open year round offering great package deals. Some of them even allow pets have many indoor facilities like indoor heated pools and spas.

On a nice sunny day in the middle of March the beach will be yours.  Don’t be surprised to be greeted by a local and maybe have a simple and friendly conversation about how nice the weather is that day.  The best time of day to visit this beach and many others on the Bay side is just before the sun sets in the west just behind the Cape Cod Canal in Buzzards Bay and at mid tide when possible. Be sure to dress warm because it’s New England and the winds are chilly when they are onshore no matter what time of year.

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