• 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 May 1 2008

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Date: May 1, 2008
Contact: Outer Banks Group, (252) 473-2111 ext 148

*Bold, blue print = updated news.

**Report resource protection area violations to:

Dare Central Communications Center: 252-473-3444.

Due to numerous springtime northeast strong winds and heavy surf and tide conditions, certain portions of beaches may be impassible at high tide and some ramps and interdunal routes have standing water on them. Visitors should pay attention to tide changes and exercise caution while traveling the beaches and interdunal routes of the park.

On April 30, 2008, U.S. District Court Judge Terrence W. Boyle signed a Consent Decree that results in the settlement and dismissal of the lawsuit involving the Seashore’s Interim Protected Species Management Strategy. On April 16, 2008, the Plaintiffs (Southern Environmental Law Center, National Audubon Society, and Defenders of Wildlife), the Federal Defendants (National Park Service, Fish & Wildlife Service and the Department of the Interior), and the Intervenor-Defendants (Dare County, Hyde County, and the Cape Hatteras Access Preservation Alliance) had jointly filed the proposed Consent Decree, which became enforceable with Judge Boyle’s signature. The Consent Decree adopts the Interim Strategy, with a number of modifications. NPS will provide additional information about the terms of the Consent Decree in the days ahead. As with last year’s implementation of the Interim Strategy, the visiting public can expect on-going modification of resource closures as the season progresses. The most immediate effect of the Consent Decree is that it establishes a prohibition on night driving on Seashore beaches between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 6 a.m. from May 1 through November 15. Between those dates, the public is expected to remove ORVs from the beach by 10:00 p.m. and not to enter the beach with vehicles until 6:00 a.m.; however, between September 16 and November 15, NPS may issue permits to authorize night driving between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m.

Pets must be physically restrained at all times on a leash no greater than 6 feet.

Note: *** All distances are approximate***

Bodie Island District (Coquina Beach to Ramp 27)

There are approximately 16.5 miles of ocean shoreline are open to pedestrian access and 14.8 miles are open to ORV access in the Bodie Island District (excluding Pea Island).

Ramp 1 - Ramp 2 (Coquina Beach Area)

The beach is open for pedestrian access but no ORV access for 1.6 miles.

Ramp 2 - Ramp 4 to Bodie Island Spit

The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access along the ocean shoreline to the inlet sound side near Herbert Bonner (Oregon Inlet) Bridge. Much of the area is experiencing access limitations during extreme high tides, heavy surf conditions or strong winds.

A RESOURCE protection (prenesting) area was established at Bodie Island Spit the week of

March 24, 2008. It includes interior areas of the spit and the "pond" shoreline. Access to pond from the northeast side is closed as part of the RESOURCE protection area. An ocean/inlet shoreline access corridor is currently being maintained (weather dependent) above the high tide line for ORV and pedestrian access to the southwest side of the inlet near Bonner Bridge. A modification of the existing closure was installed on April 17, for American Oystercatchers. This creates a full beach closure of the small strip of beach that runs parallel to the Herbert C. Bonner Bridge and there is no shoreline access to the Bait Pond.

A RESOURCE protection (prenesting) area was established on Green Island during the week of April 7th. The island is closed to landing of any craft.

A RESOURCE protection area was established in a non-ORV area on the north side of the Bait Pond (west side of the canal) on April 26 for American Oystercatchers.

A RESOURCE protection area was established 0.3 of a mile south of Ramp 4 and extends for 0.25 of a mile for American Oystercatchers. There currently is ORV access past the closure along the ocean shoreline.

Villages of Rodanthe, Waves, and Salvo: (north of Ramp 23 for 3 miles to Pea Island NWR boundary)

The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access.

Ramp 23 - Ramp 27: (4.3 miles)

The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access.

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 25.7 miles of ocean shoreline open to pedestrians and 17.5 miles open for ORV access. ORV use is restricted by 8.4 miles of safety closures.

Ramp 27 - Ramp 30: (2.2 miles)

Beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access along the ocean shoreline for 0.1 of mile south of Ramp 27 and 0.6 mile north of Ramp 30. Currently there is no through access for ORVs between the ramps due to resource closures. A 1.5 mile stretch between the resource closures is open to pedestrian access but not ORV access.

A RESOURCE protection area begins 0.1 mile south of Ramp 27 and extends for 0.25 of a mile. This is a full beach closure for American Oystercatchers.

A RESOURCE protection area begins 0.2 mile south of Ramp 27 and extends for 0.25 of a mile. This is a full beach closure for American Oystercatchers.

A RESOURCE protection area begins 1.0 mile south of Ramp 27 and extends for 0.25 of a mile. This is a full beach closure for American Oystercatchers.

A RESOURCE protection area begins 0.6 mile north of Ramp 30 and extends for 0.25 of a mile. This is a full beach closure for American Oystercatchers.

Ramp 30 - Ramp 34: (4.3 miles)

The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access from Ramp 30 south for 3.8 miles. Currently there is no through access for ORVs between the ramps due to a resource closure.

A RESOURCE protection area begins 0.5 mile north of Ramp 34 and extends for 0.25 of a mile. This is a full beach closure for American Oystercatchers.

Ramp 34 - Ramp 38: (4.0 miles)

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.

A SAFETY closure of 1.6 miles begins 1.9 miles south of Ramp 34 (.1 mi. north of Avon Pier) and extends to 0.3 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)

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.

A SAFETY closure is 3.8 miles long, beginning 1.8 of a mile south of Ramp 38 to 0.4 of a mile north of Ramp 43, due to narrow beaches. This section is open to pedestrian access, but not ORV access.

A RESOURCE protection area begins 0.7 of a mile north of the village of Buxton and extends for 0.25 of a mile. This is a full beach closure for American Oystercatchers. This section is within a SAFETY CLOSURE which is not open to ORV access and pedestrian access is restricted through the 0.25 mile closure.

Ramp 43 - Ramp 44: (0.3 of a mile)

The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access along the ocean shoreline via a 10 meter corridor north of Ramp 43 for 0.1 of a mile. Currently, there is no through access for ORVs between the ramps due to a resource protection closure. Ramp 44 is temporarily closed due to flooded conditions from recent heavy rains. ORV access to Cape Point is being routed through Cape Point Campground, Ramp 45 and the interdunal road.

A RESOURCE protection area begins south of Ramp 43 and extends for 0.26 of a mile. This is a full beach closure for American Oystercatchers. The closure was expanded 200 feet to the south on April 28 for American Oystercatchers.

A RESOURCE protection area begins 50 feet north of Ramp 43 parking lot and extends for 0.25 of a mile for American Oystercatchers.

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

ORV and pedestrian access is open for 1.1 miles from Ramps 43 and 44 to the tip of Cape Point and south/west from Cape Point along the shoreline for approximately 0.25 miles to where a RESOURCE protection area begins. A RESOURCE protection (prenesting) area was established the week of March 24, 2008. It included interior areas of Cape Point and a complete shoreline closure that started approximately 0.25 miles south/west of Cape Point and ends approximately 0.3 east of Ramp 45. The total closure distance is approximately 1.0 mile in length.

Ramp 45 to Ramp 49 (South Beach): (3.4 miles)

Ramp 45 is open and accessible via the interdunal road from Ramp 44.

Salt Pond Road is closed due to a RESOURCE protection area. Currently there is no through access for ORVs or pedestrians between the ramps due to resource closures. There is ORV and pedestrian access from Ramp 49 east for approximately 2.5 miles.

A RESOURCE protection area (prenesting area) was established the week of March 24, 2008. It included upper beach areas that encompass the dunes and extends towards the ocean. On April 21, a modification (150 foot shoreline section) of this prenesting area was installed for American Oystercatchers. This is a full beach closure.

A RESOURCE protection area begins 0.50 mile west of Ramp 45 and extends for 0.25 of a mile along the shoreline. This is a full beach closure for American Oystercatchers.

A RESOURCE protection area begins 0.8 mile west of Ramp 45 and extends for 0.25 of a mile along the shoreline. This is a full beach closure for American Oystercatchers.

Note: On April 25th, an ORV drove into a resource closure on South Beach. This was witnessed and reported by another ORV operator. The offending vehicle left the closure before law enforcement rangers arrived. The citizen who had observed the violation wished to act as a witness in court and provided sufficient information to the rangers to identify the suspect. The suspect was located and charged. NPS greatly appreciates the actions of the ORV user, which led directly to the apprehension of the violator.

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

The beach is open to ORV for 1.2 miles west of Ramp 49 and 0.1 of a mile east of Ramp 55 (in front of Frisco andHatteras Villages). Currently, there is no through ORV access between Ramp 49 and Ramp 55 but pedestrian access is open from Ramp 49 to Ramp 55.

The beach in front of Frisco Village to Hatteras Village is open to pedestrian access, but not ORV access for 4.7 miles.

A RESOURCE protection area begins 50 yards south of the Sandy Bay parking lot on the soundside and extends for 0.25 of a mile for American Oystercatchers.

Ramp 55 - Hatteras Inlet: (2.7 miles)

ORV and pedestrian access is open along the ocean shoreline from Ramp 55 west to 0.1 mile south/west of the southern exit of the Pole Road, where a RESOURCE protection area begins. Pole Road is open from Ramp 55 west to the Isabel overwash areas, where traffic is routed onto the beach due to a RESOURCE protection area. South of the overwash areas, the Pole Road is open. The Cable Crossing route is open to access along the sound shoreline. The Spur Road is open to access to the sound shoreline.

A RESOURCE protection (prenesting) area was established at the Isabel overwash area from the sound shoreline to the ocean dune during the week of March 24, 2008. Ocean shoreline access is open past this area.

A RESOURCE protection (prenesting) area was established the week of March 24, 2008 south of the southern exit of Pole Road. The area includes upper beach and interior areas south of Pole Road and a full ocean beach closure beginning approximately 0.1 mile south/west of the southern exit of Pole Road. The full beach closure is approximately 0.8 miles long and continues south/west around the tip of Hatteras Inlet, which encompasses the "Rip."

A RESOURCE protection area for foraging piping plovers was established on the soundside, 0.1 mile southwest of where the Spur Road exits onto the sound shoreline on April 9.

Ocracoke Island District

The Ocracoke Island District has a total distance of 16.3 miles of ocean shoreline. There are 12.5miles open to pedestrians and approximately 9.0 milesare open to ORV access. ORV use is restricted by a SAFETY closure of 5.2 miles long.

Ramp 59 - Ramp 67: (7.8 miles)

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

A RESOURCE protection (prenesting) area was established at North Ocracoke Spit the week of March 24, 2008. It includes interior areas of the spit and the ocean shoreline. An ocean/inlet shoreline access corridor is currently being maintained (weather dependent) above the high tide line for ORV and pedestrian access from Ramp 59 north for 0.9miles toward North Ocracoke Spit. There is no ORV or pedestrian access in the RESOURCE protection area.

A RESOURCE protection area was established 0.8 of a mile south of Ramp 59 and extends for 0.25 of a mile. This is a full beach closure for American Oystercatchers.

A 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): (3.8 miles; includes Ramp 68)

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

A RESOURCE protection area begins 0.9 mile south of Ramp 68 (or 1.5 miles north of Ramp 70) and extends for 0.25 of a mile. This is a full beach closure for American Oystercatchers. An expansion/modification of 200 feet to the north was installed on April 30 for observed breeding behavior.

Ramp 70 - Ramp 72 (1.8 miles) and Ramp 72 to South Ocracoke Spit (4.4 miles):

The beach is open to ORV and pedestrian access from Ramp 70 south along ocean shoreline, for approximately 4.4 miles, to the inlet.

A RESOURCE protection (prenesting) area was established the week of March 24, 2008 that encompasses interior and soundside areas of the spit. There is ocean shoreline access for 2.6 miles from Ramp 72 south. On the soundside shoreline, 1.3 miles of shoreline is closed to ORV and pedestrian access.

Temporary resource protection areas are necessary to protect threatened and endangered species and species of concern including Piping Plovers, American Oystercatchers, Colonial Waterbirds (Terns and Skimmers), and sea turtles. Posted areas are closed to vehicles, pedestrians and pets.



 

 

-NPS-

Did You Know?

Giant Water Flea

This is not a space alien, even though it has a transparent body, wings, and a very large eye. Giant water fleas grow up to 2 cm long, and are a food source for small fish that shelter in the sound. You can swim with them in the sound-side waters off Cape Hatteras National Seashore.