2021 Lighthouse Challenge: Cape May

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2021 Lighthouse Challenge

Cape May Point Light was on the first leg for us during the Lighthouse Challenge of New Jersey. Every October the NJ Lighthouse Society runs the challenge in order to raise funds for the state’s historic lighthouses and maritime sites. In 2020, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the event was mostly virtual. In 2021, it was back on. My friend and I decided to spend the full weekend, stopping at every site on the list and collecting the souvenir piece. In previous years, I’d only finished sections of the course.

Patty and I had lived through some tough times in 2021 and were ready for the brief respite afforded by Lighthouse Challenge weekend. I would also be reporting on our odyssey for my week-long takeover of the Jersey Collective. After visiting East Point Light, we continued on our trek to Cape May Point.

Cape May Lighthouse

Cape May Point

The Cape May Lighthouse was built in 1859. It was the third tower built on the site as the first two were claimed by the ocean and are now underwater. The State of New Jersey owns the lighthouse, and incorporated it into Cape May Point State Park. The Coast Guard maintains the signal which is still an active navigational aid. They automated it in 1946.

The lighthouse is 157 feet tall with over 200 steps to the top. The park restored and opened it for the public to climb in 1988. This tall light is a sister light to Absecon and Barnegat. We opted to walk the boardwalk trails in Cape May Point State Park instead of climbing.

We caught part of a ranger talk by one of the ponds. Unfortunately, freshwater is disappearing from the park due to climate change and development nearby. We took a few shots of the WWII bunker on the beach before heading to our next stop.

2021 Lighthouse Challenge posts

Location: 215 Light House Ave, Cape May, NJ 08204
Designation: National Register of Historic Places
Date designated/established: November 12, 1973
Date of my visit: October 16, 2021

Virtual Climb of Cape May Lighthouse from the 2020 challenge

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