Heads up! Wildlife Refuge & Beach Closures to allow for Pony Penning health checks July 27 & 28Plan Ahead! We will be closing for a portion of the day on July 27 and July 28, to allow the CHINCOTEAGUE VOLUNTEER FIRE CO. to conduct summer health checks of the Chincoteague ponies.
🐴 On Monday, July 27, the Service Road north of "D" Dike will close to all public access. Over Sand Vehicle (OSV) permit holders will still have access to "C" Dike for fishing. Hikers and bicyclists will still have access to "D" Dike to get to the beach. The Service Road may reopen in the afternoon, if the health check activities at the northern corral finish early.
🐴 On Tuesday July 28, the refuge will close to all public access from 5 am until Noon; opening earlier if the health check activities at the southern corral finish early.
While these health checks are normally open to the public to view ponies, the refuge, in an abundance of caution and concern for the health and well-being of the public during the COVID-19 pandemic, has decided to close during this time, so people won't be tempted to congregate at the corrals. The temporary closures also allow the Chincoteague Volunteer Fire Company to conduct their activities with fewer personnel, allowing them to ensure Fire Company personnel are available to the community for priority needs.
The Refuge will continue to provide accessible outdoor recreation opportunities aligning with current federal, state and local guidelines.