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Contact: National Park Service, 252-473-2111 x 148
Cape Hatteras National Seashore beaches are being managed 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 sea turtle nesting closures may occur until early November. Shorebird pre-nesting closures have already been established at the inlets, Cape Point, and South Beach. As soon as subsequent breeding activity is observed, the consent decree requires that automatic, non-discretionary buffers be implemented.
For brevity sake, the Beach Access Report format has changed this year. The Report is issued every Thursday throughout the breeding season and will briefly summarize the current status of access in each section of the seashore listed below. Updated news will be reported weekly in bold, BLUE print. 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: https://www.nps.gov/caha/planyourvisit/googleearthmap.htm. For more information, check the National Seashore’s website at: https://www.nps.gov.
Note: *All distances are approximate. The mileage is determined on a weekly basis using GIS data and is divided geographically by island this year. Closure conditions may change in the field on short notice. On-site signage, rather than the Beach Access Report or the 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 are strictly prohibited in resource protection areas. Elsewhere, pets must be physically restrained at all time on a leash not exceeding 6 feet in length. For more information, please contact: e-mail us or call 252-473-2111, ext. 148.
(Ramp 1 to Oregon Inlet; 5.7 miles of ocean shoreline)
Mileage Summary: 4.3 miles open to ORVs and pedestrians; 1.4 miles open to pedestrians only; 0miles closed to public access due to resource closures.
Ramp 1 - Ramp 2 (Coquina Beach Area) (1.2 miles)
Status: The beach is open for pedestrian access, but not for ORV access.
Ramp 2 - Ramp 4 (2.4 miles)
Status: Ramp 2 is open to ORV use. Area from Ramp 2 to Ramp 4 is open for ORV and pedestrian access.
Ramp 4 – Oregon Inlet (Bodie Island Spit: 2.1 miles)
Status: The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access for approximately 1.9 miles south of Ramp 4 to Oregon Inlet. A pre-nesting area was installed on March 9, 2010. About 100 meters on the western shoreline of the Spit near the bridge is marked for pedestrian access only.
(Village of Rodanthe south to Hatteras Inlet; 41.8 miles of ocean shoreline)
Mileage Summary: 30.9 miles open to ORVs and pedestrians; 9.4 miles open to pedestrians only; 1.5 miles closed to public access due to resource closures.
Villages of Rodanthe, Waves, and Salvo - Ramp 23: (Pea Island NWR boundary to Ramp 23 – 5.3 miles)
Status: The beach is open to ORV and pedestrian access in front of the villages of Rodanthe, Waves, and Salvo are open to ORV and pedestrian access for 5.3 miles.
Ramp 23 - Ramp 27: (4.3 miles)
Status: The beach is open to ORV and pedestrian access for 4.3 miles between Ramp 23 and Ramp 27.
Ramp 27 - Ramp 30: (2.0 miles)
Status: The beach is open to ORV and pedestrian access for 0.1 mile south of Ramp 27 and 1.2 miles north of Ramp 30. A full beach resource protection closure 0.1 miles south of Ramp 27 restricts through access.
Ramp 30 - Ramp 34: (4.3 miles)
Status: The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access.
Ramp 34 - Ramp 38: (3.9 miles)
Status: The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access 1.7 miles south of Ramp 34 and 1.4 of mile north of Ramp 38. There is an ORV safety closure in effect immediately north of Avon Pier and extends south for 0.4 miles.
Ramp 38 - Ramp 43: (6.0 miles; includes the Haulover soundside & Buxton Village)
Status: The beach is open to ORV and pedestrian access for 2.0 miles south of Ramp 38. From that point, there is pedestrian access south to Ramp 43.
Ramp 43 - Ramp 44: (0.4 of a mile)
Status: The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access 0.1 of a mile south of Ramp 43. A full beach closure restricts through access between Ramp 43 and Ramp 44.
Ramp 44 - Ramp 45: (Ramp 44 to tip of Cape Point: 1.0 miles; Cape Point tip to Ramp 45: 1.4 miles)
Status: Ramp 44 is open. There is ORV and pedestrian access from Ramp 44 to Cape Point. There is a full beach closure from approximately 0.2 miles south/west of Cape Point to approximately 0.3 miles east of Ramp 45 as part of the pre-nesting area installed on March 10, 2010. The Interdunal Road and Ramp 45 are open to ORV and pedestrian access. Salt Pond Road is closed.
Ramp 45 - Ramp 49: (South Beach: 3.4 miles)
Status: Ramp 45 is open and there is ORV and pedestrian access west for 0.2 miles. A full beach closure located 0.2 miles southwest of Ramp 45 restricts through ORV and pedestrian access to Ramp 49. The South Beach pre-nesting area was established on March 10, 2010.
Ramp 49 - Ramp 55: (5.9 miles; includes Frisco and Hatteras Village)
Status: The beach is open to ORV and pedestrian use north of Ramp 49 and south of Ramp 49 for 1.2 miles to the Frisco Village line. There is pedestrian, but not ORV, access from the Frisco village line to 0.1 of a mile east of Ramp 55.
Ramp 55 - Hatteras Inlet: (Hatteras Inlet Spit: 2.6 miles)
Status: ORV and pedestrian access is open along the ocean shoreline from Ramp 55 south/west for 2.1 miles. The Pole Road is open to ORV and pedestrians south to the north end of the Isabel overwash area where traffic is routed onto the beach due to a pre-nesting protection area. Cable Crossing and Spur Road (south of the Isabel overwash area) are open to the sound shoreline. There is currently no ORV or pedestrian access to the inlet. The Hatteras Inlet and the Isabel Overwash pre-nesting areas were established on March 11, 2010.
(17.3 miles of ocean shoreline)
Mileage Summary: 10.7 miles open to ORVs and pedestrians; 6.4 miles open to pedestrians only; 0.2 miles closed to public access due to resource closures.
Hatteras Inlet (North Ocracoke Spit) to Ramp 59: (1.3 miles)
Status: The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access to the inlet for 1.0 mile north of Ramp 59. The North Ocracoke pre-nesting area was established on March 11, 2010.
Ramp 59 - Ramp 67: (7.8 miles)
Status: The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access for 1.0 mile south of Ramp 59 and 0.7 mile north of Ramp 67. There is no through ORV access between these two ramps. There is pedestrian, but not ORV access, from Ramp 59 to Ramp 67.
Ramp 67 - Ramp 70 (includes Ramp 68): (3.8 miles; includes Ramp 68)
Status: The beach is open for ORV and pedestrian access. A full beach resource protection closure located 0.8 mile south of Ramp 67 restricts through access for ORV and pedestrians to Ramp 70.
Ramp 70 - Ramp 72: (1.8 miles)
Status: The beach is open to ORV and pedestrian access.
Ramp 72 to South Point: (2.6 miles)
Status: The beach is open to ORV and pedestrian access on the ocean shoreline for approximately 2.5 miles from Ramp 72 south to the inlet. The South Point pre-nesting area was established on March 11, 2010.
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.