The almost decade I spent living in the Town of East Hampton was amazing. In that period of time I met and shared beers with commercial fisherman, political characters, bartenders, business owners, bankrupt/broke folks, a few very successful wealthy folks and then all the folks who took care of me in Montauk (all a breed of their own!).
I spent many a day and night with my beagle looking at sunsets, sunrises, full moons, shooting stars, and bad storms through the windshield of my then white 2000 VW convertible Cabrio. I believe the top of that car was down from May to October, unless it was raining. I just couldn't get enough of the wide open spaces East Hampton Town provides. Driving on all the back roads in the early spring or late fall was a pleasure and the reason I stayed off Route 27 as much as possible when I had to drive to work at Dan's Papers, then in Bridgehampton. Writing a few thousand articles/reports/stories I was fortunate to meet legends on their lands and get a feel about the town where I was an all-year-round full time living guest.
On this January 2018 rainy/wet snow day I decided to pick my 5 favorite places in East Hampton/Montauk, places I would go to, to feel good or to placate me when I felt real bad.
1) Camp Hero, in the middle of the day in the off season was a great place to take a walk. The bluffs, the ocean, the fishing boats off in the distance, and then that view of the Montauk Lighthouse is as good as it gets. I cross -country skied there. Walked my dog there, and most of always felt something special there. Walking this place when the striped bass are running is crazy.
2) Louse Point is another gem of a location. Located in the Springs, it is my second favorite swimming hole on a really hot summer day. However it is a place I visit all year round. Whether to just look at the picturesque unspoiled view of East Harbor or to look at Gardiners Island it's the best. You see the same view the Indians saw in the 1500s.
3) Sammy's Beach. This is my favorite swimming spot and over the years I actually only go here by sailboat, where I then drop my anchor in 3 to 4 feet of water and swim in water as clean and clear as anywhere on earth with wonderful sand beneath.
4) Lazy Point. Although technically part of Amagansett, Lazy Point to me seems located in another place in time. The quiet modest understated homes/cottages are special. Each home individually seems to have a 100 year story of scratching out an East End living that always touches my soul. I feel like I am in Nova Scotia just looking out at the wide open vistas. I spent some time here after my Dog passed on. I actually have a wonderful Michael McDowell painting of Lazy Point hanging in my kitchen.
5) Gin Beach/Montauk. Again, the views of the Block Island Sound and Connecticut are classic watercolor painting qualities. However my reason for loving this spot is because it is where I brought my kids when they were young and this was their favorite beach in Montauk in the early 1990s. Sometimes they would wave at my dad's boat as he came back from deep seas fishing.
I left the ocean beaches out because that will be another article. Besides, is there even really an East Hampton ocean beach that isn't totally awesome in the off season?
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Photo courtesy T.J. Clemente.
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