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

    Cape Hatteras

    National Seashore North Carolina

Sunset and Full Moon Tours Offered at the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse on October 7

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Date: October 2, 2006
Contact: Outer Banks Group, (252) 473-2111

With the "sun setting" on the 2006 climbing season at the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, the National Park Service will offer a grand finale series of evening tours on Saturday, October 7, 2006. Clouds cooperating, the tours will celebrate a colorful soundside sunset followed by a full moon rising over the ocean. The close timing of sunset and full moon rise allows for the different tours.

As a very special experience for the local communities and visiting public, four tours will be given during that evening. The night will begin with a Sunset Tour at 6:00 p.m., followed by three Full Moon Tours (7:00 p.m., 8:00 p.m., and 9:00 p.m.). Each tour is limited to 30 people. Tickets must be purchased in advance. Sunset and Full Moon Tour ticket sales will start on Wednesday, October 4. The lighthouse ticket booth is open from 8:15 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. daily. Sunset and Full Moon Tour tickets are non-refundable.

There are no lights inside the lighthouse, so climbers will navigate the 257 stairs using handheld flashlights. During the climb, park rangers will provide stories of the arduous duties of the lighthouse keeper. In the lantern room, visitors will be able to view the light up close and in motion; and hear of the operation of the beacon, past and present – a truly unique experience. Outside on the lighthouse balcony (weather cooperating) climbers will get a glimpse of what the lighthouse keepers of old were able to experience – seeing that beam of light reaching out to sea and the startling reflection of the newly risen moon on the ocean. It doesn’t get better than this!

Things to know:

1. Sunset and Full Moon Tour tickets must be purchased in person, in advance, at the lighthouse ticket booth. Full Moon Tour ticket sales will begin Wednesday, October 4. It is anticipated that tickets will sell out early. Standard admissions fees apply - $6 for adults, and $3 for children (11 and under) as well as seniors (62 and older). The lighthouse ticket booth, located at the lighthouse site, is open from 8:15 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. daily.

2. Each participant for the Full Moon Tour must bring a handheld flashlight with fresh, serviceable batteries. Flashlights are not required for the Sunset Tour.

3. All participants are required to be at least 42 inches tall and must climb the steps on their own – they can not be carried! If unsure, check with the Rangers before purchasing your non-refundable ticket. Also, keep in mind that some youngsters, although meeting height requirements, may not enjoy the dimly lit, sometimes claustrophobic environment.

4. Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult.

5. For safety reasons, all participants must climb and descend with their group. No exceptions.

6. Know your limitations! The lighthouse is tall, dark, humid, and can be a challenge to climb. There are no internal lights or air conditioning.

7. All routine lighthouse safety requirements, as well as restrictions as to eating, drinking, gum etc, apply. This information will be provided to you when you purchase your ticket.

8. Tickets are non-refundable. If the program is cancelled due to inclement weather, the ticket holder may exchange the ticket the following morning, October 8, between the hours of 8:15 a.m. and 9:15 a.m. for a replacement ticket useable only on October 8. This ticket will be for day climbing only.

If you can’t make these special evening tours, remember the tower is open for climbing from 9 am to 5 pm daily through October 9, 2006.

Did You Know?

December 17, 1903 First Flight

Wright Brothers National Memorial, where Wilbur and Orville Wright flew the first powered flights on December 17, 1903, is only a few miles north of Cape Hatteras National Seashore. More...