dogs on leash

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A place to engage your senses The sound of ocean waves, the starry night sky, or the calm of the salt marshes, you can experience it all. Shaped by the forces of water, wind, and storms these islands are ever changing. The plants, wildlife, and people who live here adapt continually. Whether you are walking on the beach, kayaking on the sound, or climbing the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse there is something for everyone to explore!

Enjoyable loop trail through a maritime forest to a salt marsh with a view of the sound beyond it where several shorebirds feed. There is an elevated deck overlooking the marsh and sound that would be a good place to set up a spotting scope. Poison Ivy is abundant along the trail but the trail is wide and it isn’t much of a problem. I’ve never seen so many Fowler’s Toads in one place. They were hopping off the trail every twenty or thirty feet. There is plenty of parking at the trailhead.

If you are a birder you will love this trail. A boardwalk first takes you over a pond with several turtles that are used to humans and have no problem posing for pictures. Then the trail leads through a tunnel of wind blown trees before opening up to a chat path with wetlands on each side. Birds are everywhere and varied. At the end of the path is an elevated platform with great views of the surrounding wetlands. Along the chat path are viewing decks that allow better viewing of the wetlands.

Don’t overlook the visitor center at the start of the trail, which has free to use spotting scopes pointing at the wetland from big picture windows as well as several nature exhibits. They also sell birding books, t-shirts and related items. Looking out the visitor center window toward the ocean you can still see sticking out of the ocean the boiler of the shipwrecked steamer SS Oriental that sank in 1862.

Nice easy hike, petty scenery. Great sunset views!

Good, short trail. Had some really nice views of marsh and wading birds half way through the loop. Tons of fowler's toads and other little critters along the trail too. If you venture out in the late afternoon/evening, be prepared to be bitten.

scenic driving
Sunday, March 05, 2017

Great stretch along Hwy 12. We’ve been to the original placement of the Hatteras Light as well as to the new location – quite an engineering feat to move it. We make this part of the Hwy 12 Lighthouse run – great day trip for families. Lots to do, kayak, swim, surf, fly kites, fish, hike, stroll, birdwatch, build sandcastles… If you are on the Outer Banks, I highly recommend this trip and visiting Cape Hatteras National Seashore!

scenic driving
Sunday, March 05, 2017

Oregon Inlet is an inlet along North Carolina's Outer Banks. It joins the Pamlico Sound with the Atlantic Ocean and separates Bodie Island from Pea Island, which are connected by the 2.5 mile Herbert C. Bonner Bridge that spans the inlet. As one of the few access points to the ocean along this stretch of coast, Oregon Inlet is a major departure point for charter fishing trips, with a nearby harbor serving as the base for many large boats that travel miles out towards the Gulf Stream almost every day. The inlet is also the location of a U.S. Coast Guard station [ref Wikipedia]. Great place to check what's biting when the boats come into the docks, fun to do some crabbing next to the dock. We stop by here every time we do the lighthouse run - Currituck to Wright Brothers Memorial to Bodie Island to Cape Hatteras to Okracoke to Cape Lookout and there be ferries involved too. Great day trip along Hwy 12! LOVE the OBX!

walking
Tuesday, August 16, 2016

I love this area, nice beaches, old style beach towns

can't really rate it because we didn't finish the trail. but here are some tips: don't bring your dog; no pets allowed but we drove 45 minutes with our dog so we hiked with our dog. wear light hiking boots or sneakers. too many sand spurs for sandals ( not good for the dog either ). it was too hot in August ; do the trail in cooler weather. will come back and try again this winter without the dog.

Monday, July 04, 2016

Perfect for a short outing with my wife and dog. The dunes and pines trees were beautiful. Lots of fiddler crabs on our walk. The viewing area over looking the salt marsh was scenic with several bird species among them plovers. Tied to locate the geo cache in this area but apparently needs maintenance. Watch out for poison ivy if you venture off the beaten path, its everywhere. We didn't see anyone else. Also, a few spots had mosquitos and greenies so bring repellant.

Easy walking.
Wonderful birds.

scenic driving
Saturday, November 21, 2015

Don't limit yourself to the memorial. There is much to do here. Be sure to pick up some of the local wine made from the same grapes as the wild horses eat. The last time I was there was almost 10 years ago but I hear it has not changed much.

scenic driving
Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Our first trip to the Outer Banks was primarily for my wife to scuba dive - another scenic aspect, though a little off the road. Even in the busiest stretches, north of the First Flight memorial, were a treat. The OBX has the more affluent villages to the north, as well as nice scenery, capped for us by the lighthouse and driving off-road at the top in an attempt to see the wild ponies. The First Flight memorial is a very worthwhile stop and, done properly involves a fairly easy, handicapped-accessible hike to the monument. South of the First Flight memorial, the OBX is more laid back and touristy, so there's something for almost anyone. I especially enjoyed the scenery from Nags Head, south. The views of the dunes, ocean and marshes were great, as were the beaches. But don't stop at the Bonner Bridge! more scenery and lighthouses await. This is a great ride, all the way to Ocracoke Island and back. Take the time to take a side trip (4X4) onto the beach, where allowed. Also, stop for a beach hike of almost any length or visit a lighthouse..

hiking
2 months ago

9 months ago

scenic driving
Saturday, January 30, 2016