|Subscribe | What is RSS|
Contact: Patrick M. Kenney, 2520728-2250 ext. 3014
Harkers Island, NC –Effective immediately (October 6, 2016), until further notice, Cape Lookout National Seashore is closed to the public based on the potential threat of Hurricane Matthew (in accordance with 36CFR 1.5). This decision is to ensure the safety and protection of the public, park staff, and facilities. However, the park's visitor centers and administrative office on Harkers Island and in Beaufort will remain open through today.
The latest storm model depicts a consensus of keeping Matthew off of our coast, but confidence remains low in the exact forecast track. Right now, the potential for tropical storm force winds is primarily along the immediate southern outer banks coastline. The latest forecast indicates that Eastern North Carolina could experience 4 to 8 inches of rainfall, beginning Friday evening. The rainfall combined with already high water levels and storm surge could result in flooding in coastal areas.The National Weather Service still urges continued vigilance and preparations for the potential of Matthew to track much closer to the coast and bring more significant impacts.
A small craft advisory remains in effect for the area, due to strong northeast winds and seas of 7 to 10 feet in the near term.Marine conditions will deteriorate rapidly moving into the weekend.As Matthew approaches, seas will build 10 to 15 feet in the coastal waters and 20 feet or greater in the western offshore waters.There is also a high threat of rip currents across the entire area, and very rough surf.
The park has worked with Recreation.gov to correct the reservation issues that occurred. Anyone with questions or concerns related to these reservations should contact Recreation.gov.Reservations at Great Island and Long Point Cabins are currently canceled through Sunday night (10/9/16). Reservations beyond Sunday night are on hold pending a decision on reopening the park. Visitors with reservations should be monitoring the weather conditions. Reservations canceled due to weather will be issued a full refund at www.recreation.gov, or call (877) 444-6777.
According to Superintendent Pat Kenney, "We would like to thank our park partners, especially the ferry services for their cooperation in efficiently evacuating park visitors and their vehicles from the islands to ensure public safety." National Park Service staff will be following ongoing developments with Hurricane Matthew and will post updates as needed on the park website at www.nps.gov/calo and via Facebook and Twitter at twitter.com/CapeLookoutNPS.