We want to avoid conflicts and mishaps along the trail, since it is impossible to see the beach from the upper trail. The first concern is dogs racing excitedly down or up the trail and the possibility that a trail user will get sideswiped. Another concern is for the leashed dogs vs. roaming dogs; dogs leashed can be more intimidated and aggressive when encountering an unleashed dog and the fight can begin even with otherwise friendly dogs. Perhaps the greatest concern is the dog that races freely onto the beach where wildlife can’t be seen from above.

PLEASE check the status of the beach before unleashing a dog. There are more instances this year of seals using Cooks Beach as a haul-out and pupping area. We don’t know why the increase in pups and possible strandings but it is primarily important that wildlife on the beach not be hassled. This includes birds, deer and other creatures, including us humans, who like to spread a blanket near the bluff. Unleashed dogs, even friendly unleashed dogs can startle others and ruin a perfectly good picnic. Please keep your dog leashed on the trail and to/from the parking area on County Road 526 until you know for sure who and what is on the beach ahead of you.

Remember: Any beach user can ask you to leash your dog, at any time, for any reason. You must comply per the leash laws. If you do allow your dog off-leash, it must be reliably under voice control at all times and be close enough to control. Also Remember: Nobody likes your dog as much as you do!