New Off Road Vehicle Regulations
New off road vehicle (ORV) regulations are now in effect. Please check here for information on how to get your ORV permit More »
Beach Fire Permits are required
Beach Fire Permits are now required. These permits are free. Please check here for information on how to get your Beach Fire Permit More »
National Park Service Beach Access Report for August 24, 2006
Contact: Outer Banks Group, (252) 473-2111
Recent News: Numerous Piping Plovers migrating south along the Atlantic coast have been observed foraging on the beaches. During one beach survey, 69 Plovers were observed on South Ocracoke Island. Two of the Plover wore a distinctive color-coded band indicating one was from the Great Lakes region and one was banded in Canada.Colonial Waterbirds such as the Least Tern, Royal and Gull-billed Tern, and Black Skimmer are abundantly present on the Seashore. The total number of turtle nests within the Seashore is now at74 and several nests have begun to hatch.
Interpretive Program Schedule: Cape Hatteras National Seashore will have a park ranger at a turtle nest closure to provide informal interpretive talks to the public. Learn how the female sea turtles come onto the Outer Banks to lay their eggs in the sand and hear of the various species of sea turtles, all protected under the Endangered Species Act. The ranger will be located at a turtle nest closure that is due to hatch this week, 1.0 mile north of Ramp 38 (in Avon Village), on Saturday, August 26, from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm, and on Thursday, August 31, from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm.
Bodie Island District (Coquina Beach to Ramp 27)
There are approximately 16.5 miles of ocean shoreline in the Bodie Island District (excluding Pea Island).16.3 miles are open to pedestrians and 11.7 miles are open for ORV access. ORV use is restricted by 4.6 miles of seasonal closures in front of the Tri-villages and a life-guarded swim beach. Approximately 0.2 of a mile is closed as a full-beach resource closure and there are no ORV Safety closures in effect.
Ramp 1 - 0.6 miles South of Ramp 2 (Coquina Beach Area)
A SEASONAL ORV beach closure is 1.6 miles long and includes a life-guarded swim beach, 150 feet wide. Pedestrian access is open.
0.6 miles South of Ramp 2 - Ramp 4 and to Bodie Island Spit
The beach is open to ORV and pedestrian access along the ocean shoreline to the inlet sound side near Herbert Bonner (Oregon Inlet) Bridge. Some areas may experience access limitations during extreme high tides or winds.
· A RESOURCE protection area is located within the interior of Bodie Island Spit. Approximately 0.9 of a mile south of Ramp 4, and 0.2 of a mile long, a two-lane, pass through corridor above the high tide line was established to accommodate a gathering of approximately 150 birds. Recent observations include 60 Least Terns with 2 chicks, 50 Royal Terns, 40 Sandwich Terns, and a few migrating Piping Plovers,foraging and roosting in the area. No stopping or parking is permitted within the pass through. An access corridor is being maintained above the high tide line, for ORV and pedestrian access, to the southwest side of the inlet.
Villages of Rodanthe, Waves, and Salvo: (north of Ramp 23 for 3 miles)
A SEASONAL ORV beach closure is 3 miles long; open to pedestrian access.
Ramp 23 - Ramp 27:
Beach access is open for ORV and pedestrian use between Ramp 23 and 27.
Hatteras Island District (Ramp 27 South to Hatteras Inlet)
The Hatteras District has a total distance of 31.9 miles of ocean shoreline. There are 30.7 miles open to pedestrians and 18.8 miles of beach are open for ORV access. ORV use is restricted by 7.5 miles of seasonal closures and 4.4 miles of safety closures. Approximately 1.2 miles are closed due to full beach resource protection closures.
Ramp 27 - Ramp 30: (2.2 miles of shoreline)
The beach is open to ORV and pedestrian access south of Ramp 27 for 0.3 miles and from Ramp 30 north for 1.4 miles. Currently there is no through access between Ramp 27 and Ramp 30.
· A RESOURCE protection area is located 0.3 miles south of Ramp 27 for a very active Least Tern colony. Recent observations include approximately 57 adult Least Terns with 6 chicks.This is a full beach closure area, 0.5 of a mile long.
Ramp 30 - Ramp 34:
The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access for 2.8 miles south of Ramp 30 and for 0.5 of a mile north of Ramp 34. Currently there is no through access between Ramp 30 and Ramp 34.
· An ORV SAFETY closure is 0.2 miles long beginning 2.8 miles south of Ramp 30 to 3.0 miles south of Ramp 30.
· A RESOURCE protection area is located 0.5 miles north of Ramp 34 for a Least Tern colony. Two chicks in the colony are approximately 2 weeks old. This is a full beach closure, 0.2 of a mile long.
Ramp 34 - Ramp 38:
A SEASONAL ORV closure in front of Avon Village beachfront is a 3.5 miles long. The beach is open to pedestrian access. ORV access is open for 0.5 miles south of Ramp 34.
Ramp 38 - Ramp 43:
The beach is open to ORV access for 0.8 of a mile south of Ramp 38.Currently there is no through ORV access between Ramp 38 and Ramp 43.Pedestrian access is open, except within the resource closure noted below:
· An ORV SAFETY closure is 4.2 miles long, beginning 0.8 of a mile south of Ramp 38 to Ramp 43, due to very narrow beaches and hurricane impacted areas.
Ramp 43 - Ramp 44:
· The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access along the ocean shoreline to Cape Point.
Ramp 44 - Ramp 49:
The beach is open to ORV and pedestrian access for 3.1 miles, between Ramp 44 and south of Cape Point to 0.8 of a mile south of Ramp 45, via the ocean shoreline. The Interdunal Road, Salt Pond Road and Ramp 45 are open.
· A RESOURCE protection area begins just south of Ramp 44, encompassing a colony of Colonial waterbirds. Also 9 migratory Piping Plover were recently observed.Numerous birds are foraging, roosting and defending territory. Visitors in the area are asked to reduce their vehicle speed to 10 mph and keep all dogs on a leash of six feet or less. Shoreline access is open around this closure, to Cape Point and to 0.8 of a mile south of Ramp 45.
· A RESOURCE protection area within the interior of Cape Point begins approximately 0.5 of a mile south of the Point for an active colonial waterbird colony. A section of shoreline 0.1 of a mile long has been kept closed for foraging habitat around an ephemeral pool. ORV and pedestrian access is open around the north side of the ephemeral pool.
Did You Know?
The Cape Hatteras Lighthouse is the tallest brick structure ever moved. When it was built in 1870, it stood 1,500 feet from the shore. By 1999, the lighthouse was within 100 feet of the ocean. To protect it from the encroaching sea, it was moved inland a total of 2,900 feet over a 23-day period.