• Spring-time view of the seashore, with shorebirds returning to the surf.

    Cape Hatteras

    National Seashore North Carolina

National Park Service Beach Access Report for March 26, 2009

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Date: March 26, 2009
Contact: Cyndy Holda, 252-473-2111, ext. 148

Welcome to the first weekly Beach Access Report of the 2009 season for Cape Hatteras National Seashore!    Seashore beaches will be managed again this summer under the terms of the U.S. District Court approved consent decree.  Park visitors can expect to see resource closures for breeding shorebirds in effect to varying degrees from mid-March to mid-to-late-August and turtle nesting closures may occur until early November.  Shorebird prenesting closures have already been established at the inlets, Cape Point, and SouthBeach.  As soon as subsequent breeding activity is observed, the consent decree requires that automatic, non-discretionary buffers be implemented.  

 

The Beach Access Report is issued every Thursday throughout the breeding season,and updated news will be reported weekly in bold, BLUEprint.  **All distances are approximate.**  The weekly Beach Access Report is complemented by a Google Earth map, which is updated up to 5 times per week as access conditions change. The latest Google Earth beach access map can be viewed at:  http://www.nps.gov/caha/planyourvisit/googleearthmap.htm

Note:  Closure conditions may change in the field on short notice.  On-site signage, rather than the Beach Access Report or Google Earth map, is the most accurate and current indication of what is open or closed to the public.  Closed areas are clearly marked in the field with “symbolic fencing” consisting of wooden or carsonite posts, closure signs, string, and flagging tape.  Knowledge of tidal changes and caution should be exercised while traveling the beaches of the park.  Pets must be on at least a 6-foot leash at all times.

 

The National Park Service is committed to providing accurate and current information on the beach access and temporary resource closure issue for the visiting public and our community neighbors.  Please send your comments to: e-mail us or call 252-473-211, ext. 148 for more information.

 

Bodie Island District(CoquinaBeachto Ramp 27; 16.5 miles of ocean shoreline)

 

Ramp 1 - Ramp 2 (CoquinaBeachArea)  (1.2 miles)

Current Status:  The beach is open for pedestrian access, but not for ORV access.

·         An ORV SAFETY closure is 1.2 miles long.

 

Ramp 2 - Ramp 4  (2.4 miles)

Current Status:  The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access.

 

Ramp 4– Oregon Inlet   (Bodie Island Spit: 2.1 miles)

Current Status:  The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access for 1.3 miles south of Ramp 4.  The inlet shoreline south/west of the closure, outside of the pre-nesting area, remains open for boat landing/pedestrian access.

 

·         March 23, 2009:  A full beach closure (RESOURCE protection area) was established 1.3 miles south of Ramp 4 along the ocean shoreline, as a result of observed piping plover breeding behavior.

·         A RESOURCE protection area (prenesting area) was established on March 11, 2009.  It included interior areas of the spit and the “pond” shoreline and allowed an ORV access corridor along the eastern ocean shoreline to a point 1.4 miles south of Ramp 4 and pedestrian access to the inlet.  There is no ORV or pedestrian access in the RESOURCE protection area.

 

Villages of Rodanthe, Waves, and Salvo:   (PeaIsland NWR boundary to Ramp 23 - 3.0 miles)

Current Status:  The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access.

 

Ramp 23 - Ramp 27:  (4.3 miles)

Current Status:  The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access.

 

Hatteras Island District(Ramp 27 South to Hatteras Inlet; 31.9 miles of ocean shoreline)

 

Ramp 27 - Ramp 30: (2.1 miles)

Current Status:  Beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access from Ramp 27 south for 0.9 of a mile or 1.1 miles north of Ramp 30.  

·         March 25, 2009– A full beach closure (RESOURCE protection area) was established 1.1 miles north of Ramp 30 as a result of observed American Oystercatcher breeding behavior.

 

Ramp 30 - Ramp 34:  (4.3 miles)

Current Status:  The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access.

 

Ramp 34 - Ramp 38:  (3.9 miles)

Current Status:  The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access from Ramp 34 to 0.2 miles south of Avon Pier.  Currently, there is no through access for ORVs to Ramp 38.  Pedestrian access is open.

·         An ORV SAFETY closure of 1.6 miles begins 1.9 miles south of Ramp 34 (.1 mi. north of Avon Pier) and extends to .3 mile north of Ramp 38.  This 1.6 mile section is open to pedestrian access, but not ORV access. 

 

Ramp 38 - Ramp 43:  (6.0 miles)

Current Status:  The beach is open to ORV and pedestrian access for 1.8 of a mile south of Ramp 38.  Currently, there is no through access for ORVs between Ramp 38 and Ramp 43.  Pedestrian access is open.

·        An ORV SAFETY closure is 2.8 miles long, beginning 1.8 of a mile south of Ramp 38 to .4 of a mile north of Ramp 43, due to very narrow beaches.  This section is open to pedestrian access, but not ORV access.

 

Ramp 43 - Ramp 44:   (0.4 of a mile)

Current Status:  The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access.

 

Ramp 44 - Ramp 45:  (Cape Point: 2.4 miles)

Current Status:  ORV and pedestrian access is open from Ramp 44 south to Cape Point and from Cape Point south/west for approximately 0.2 of a mile.  The Interdunal Road is open from Ramp 44 to Ramp 45.  Salt Pond Road is closed.

·         Cape Point:  A RESOURCE protection area (prenesting area) was established on March 12, 2009 It included interior areas of Cape Point and a complete shoreline closure from approximately 0.2 miles south/west of Cape Point to approximately 0.3 east of Ramp 45; and allowed for an access corridor along the eastern ocean shoreline.  The total closure distance was approximately 1.0 mile in length.  There is no ORV or pedestrian access within the RESOURCE protection area.

 

Ramp 45 - Ramp 49:  (SouthBeach: 3.4 miles)

Current Status:  The Interdunal Road is open from Ramp 44 to Ramp 45. Salt Pond Road is closed.  ORV and pedestrian access is open from Ramp 45 for 0.2 miles east and 0.2 miles west (i.e., a cul-de-sac).  Access is also open from Ramp 49 for 2.7 miles east to where a RESOURCE protection area is located.

·         March 23, 2009:  A full beach closure (RESOURCE protection area) was established from approximately 0.2 miles to 0.7 miles west of Ramp 45, as a result of observed American oystercatcher breeding behavior.

·         SouthBeach:  A RESOURCE protection area (prenesting area) was established on March 12, 2009.  It included upper beach areas that encompass the dunes and extends towards the ocean but allows for an ORV corridor along the lower beach.  There is no ORV or pedestrian access within the RESOURCE protection area.

 

Ramp 49 - Ramp 55:  (5.9 miles; includes SandyBay soundside parking area)

Current Status:  The beach is open to ORV use for 1.2 miles west of Ramp 49 to the Frisco line. There is pedestrian, but not ORV, access from the Frisco line to 0.1 of a mile east of Ramp 55.

·         An ORV SAFETY closure for FriscoVillage and HatterasVillage is 4.7 miles long.  This section is open to pedestrian access, but not ORV access.

 

Ramp 55 - Hatteras Inlet:  (Hatteras Inlet Spit: 2.7 miles)

Current Status:  ORV and pedestrian access is open along the ocean shoreline from Ramp 55 west to 0.1 mile west of the southern exit of the Pole Road Pole Road is open except in front of the Isabel overwash areas, where traffic is routed onto the beach due to a RESOURCE protection area.  Cable Crossing and Spur Road are open to the sound shoreline. Sound access is open 110 meters south of Spur Road, where a RESOURCE protection area begins.  Access to the inlet including the “Rip” is closed due to a RESOURCE protection area.

·         A RESOURCE protection area (prenesting area) was established on March 11, 2009.  It included the ocean beach from approximately 0.1mile south of the southern exit of Pole Road south/west to the inlet, then along the inlet shoreline to the sound shoreline 110 meters south of the Spur Road There is no ORV or pedestrian access within the RESOURCE protection area.

·         A RESOURCE protection area (prenesting area) was established on the soundside at the Isabel overwash area on March 11, 2009 There is no ORV or pedestrian access within the RESOURCE protection area.  Ocean shoreline access is open past this area. 

 

Ocracoke Island District(16.3 miles of ocean shoreline)  

 

Hatteras Inlet (North Ocracoke Spit) to Ramp 59:  (1.4 miles)

Current Status:  An access corridor is currently being maintained (weather dependent) above the high tide line for ORV and pedestrian access from Ramp 59 north for 0.9 miles to North Ocracoke Spit. 

·         A RESOURCE protection area (prenesting area) was established at North Ocracoke Spit on March 10, 2009.  It included interior areas and the inlet shoreline and portions of the ocean shoreline.  There is no ORV or pedestrian access within the RESOURCE protection area.

 

Ramp 59 - Ramp 67: (7.8 miles)

Current Status:  There is no through ORV shoreline access between these two ramps. Pedestrian access is open.

·         An ORV SAFETY closure is 5.2 miles long, and begins 1.0 miles south of Ramp 59 to 1.4 miles north of Ramp 67.  This section is open to pedestrian access but not to ORV access.

 

Ramp 67 - Ramp 70 (includes Ramp 68):   (3.9 miles; includes Ramp 68)

Current Status:  The beach is open to ORV and pedestrian access.

 

Ramp 70 - Ramp 72:  (1.8 miles)

Current Status:  The beach is open to ORV and pedestrian access.

 

Ramp 72 to South Point:   (3.5 miles)

Current Status:  The beach is open to ORV and pedestrian access on the ocean shoreline for 1.9 miles south of Ramp 72.

·         March 24, 2009– A deliberate violation of the RESOURCE protection area (vandalism of fencing) resulted in a mandatory 50-meter expansion of the prenesting area.  Due to the narrow width of the beach at this location, ORV access is precluded past the location of the expansion.  Pedestrian access below the tide line is permitted past the buffer expansion along portions of the inlet shoreline outside of the established prenesting area.

·         A RESOURCE protection area (prenesting area) was established on March 10, 2009.  It included the sound shoreline, portions of the inlet shoreline, and interior portions of the spit; and allowed an access corridor along the ocean shoreline to the inlet.  There is no ORV or pedestrian access within the RESOURCE protection area.

 

 

Temporary resource protection areas are necessary to protect threatened and endangered species and species of concern including piping plovers, American oystercatchers, colonial waterbirds (3 species of terns and black skimmers), and sea turtles.  Posted areas are closed to vehicles, pedestrians, and pets.

Did You Know?

Lightning whelks are one of the few species of

Lightning whelks eat about one large clam per month. The whelk pries the clam open with its muscular foot, wedges the clam open with its shell, then eats the soft inside of the clam. Lightning whelk shells, which whorl to the left, wash up on the beach at Cape Hatteras National Seashore.