As the weather heats up, so does the fun at the NC Outer Banks. Summer is prime time for outdoor activities like fishing, swimming, surfing, boating, kayaking, hiking, cycling, and so much more.
Good Monday morning from the Outer Banks! Temperatures are expected to rise to near 70 degrees today, tomorrow and Wednesday of this week. We feel like we caught some luck this week here on the beach. Spring is definitely in the air and it appears that the Groundhog was right when he predicted an early spring last month!
Right off the coast of Cape Hatteras, two mighty currents collide.
One is the warm-water Gulf Stream, flowing up from the Gulf of Mexico. The other’s the Labrador Current, which carries much cooler water down from the Arctic Ocean.
We’ve had a great few weeks of weather and festivities on the Outer Banks. Today is cooler than it has been recently, but it is expected to be in the 80 degree range for the rest of the week. A good week to go fishing!
You don’t need much in the way of equipment — a rod and reel. The tackle shops in the Outer Banks sell rod and reel combinations so you don’t have to figure out the rod and reel separately. These combinations are sold in different weights and lengths. An eight to nine foot rod is the best size to buy.
When you’re surf fishing, make sure you have a sand pipe so you can put the end of the rod in it. This sand pipe can be a piece of PVC pipe stuck in the sand. You won’t want to put the rod in the sand because a reel can get ruined.
Depending upon the season, the bait will vary. The local tackle shops can help you figure out which bait you need. Whatever bait you buy, make sure you keep it in a cooler so it stays fresh. The fish bite better when the bait smells good and is fresh.
You might also want to have artificial lures to attract the fish. Some fish like a lure better than bait. Just make sure the lure is shiny and pick one that is heavy enough to cast out into the ocean and also make sure you have extras in case the fishing line breaks.
North Carolina Fishing License
A fishing license is required to surf fish. You can get that license through any of the tackle shops in the Outer Banks or through the N.C. Marine Fisheries and Wildlife website.
Beach Driving Permit
During the off-season, you can drive your four-wheel drive vehicle on the beach in a few places, such as Nags Head, Kill Devil Hills, and Hatteras Island. You may need a permit to drive on the beach in some of these areas.
Best Place to Fish
The best place to surf fish in the Outer Banks is Cape Point. This point is where the Gulf Stream and the Labrador Current come together. The Diamond Shoals are located off of Cape Hatteras and are sandbars that shift with the currents. You can find plenty of fish between the two currents and the Diamond Shoals.
Cape Point can be crowded with fishermen from all over. The most popular times are the months of September and October. You can catch such fish as sea mullets, trouts, mackerels, bluefish, and croakers.
Surf fishing is done at any time of the year in the Outer Banks. However, the best time is in the fall when the hot temperatures are gone and some of the fish are migrating during the off-season, providing plenty of fish to catch.
This is a fun activity for all ages. When I was a young child we would go crabbing in the sound all the time. There are a few things you will need for this activity. First you will need a bucket, a net, some raw chicken, and some string (strong enough to hold the chicken.) Once you have this you will want to cut the chicken into chunks and tie the string around it. After that you are ready to go. Once you get to the sound dump your chicken into the water while holding onto the string. Soon enough you will have a crab gran onto the chicken. Scoop the crab out of the water with the net and place it in the bucket with water. Once you have had all the fun you can handle you can release the crabs you have caught. You are able to keep them as long as they meet requirements. I would check with a local bait and tackle shop to see what the requirements are as they may change.
Visit a Lighthouse
Making a trip to the lighthouse can be both fun and educational. There are three different lighthouses to choose from here in the Outer banks. First you have the Currituck Lighthouse in Corolla, then you have Bodie Island located in South Nags Head, and last you have Cape Hatteras which is located in Buxton. The kids will enjoy climbing to the top and seeing the view.
Visit the North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island
This would be a fun rain day activity. Many places you visit will have an aquarium close by but the kids always seem to enjoy going. At the aquarium kids will be able to see alligators, otters, and the largest collection of sharks in the state. They will love the touching tank full of stingrays and the hand on sea turtle rescue exhibit. If you go when it is not raining make sure to check out the nature trail and the sound side pier.
The Island Farm in Manteo
After visiting the Aquarium make sure to stop by The Island Farm for a fun and educational experience for the whole family. Here you will be able to experience island life as it was more than 150 years ago. Children will get the chance to dress up, play with toys and games from the 19th century, and play and feed the farm animals. Be sure to check their event page online before going. They offer special programs such as ox-drawn wagons rides and wash day on the farm only certain days of the week.
Visit Jockey’s Ridge
What could be more fun than climbing a large sand dune?! Nothing! That is why visiting Jockey’s Ridge is on our list! Kids will love running up the large sand dunes and then rolling down. Be careful though! In the summer the sand can get hot.
Visit the Wright Brothers National Memorial
Nothing better than a nice soak in the hot tub after a long day of travel to the Carova area and Nancy’s dog seems perplexed about why he can’t join Dad in the hot tub!Thanks Nancy for sharing your Memory Monday photos!Also this week we have photos from Jen (no last name) who shared this memorable photo from their family vacation with Outer Banks Blue. Let’s hear it for Summer Vacation 2014!!!Thanks Jen for sharing.All the best from the beach!By Tim Cafferty, President, Outer Banks Blue Realty Services
|“Fishin’ Frenzy” headed to the fishing grounds|
In the first few minutes of the series that will air Sunday night Captain Greg Mayer and his mate Nick Gowitzka open the Outer Banks Bluefin Tuna fishing season in a unique way. You will need to watch the show to see all of his antics, but Nick opens the season with
a bottle of champagne and a 12 gauge shotgun
|Yes, I know I am cute!|
These pictures bear out the point that Ashley made when she sent in the photos when she said “We had an amazing time and plan to make this a family tradition!”
Thank you Ashley for your photo memories!We also are adding a second Memory Monday this week due to the huge number of photos that we’ve been receiving lately.This second set of photos comes to us from Brandy Meadows of Metropolis, Illinois who has stayed with Outer Banks Blue at the properties “Robins’ Nest” in Corolla as well as “Metedeconk” in Kill Devil Hills. Brandy said Robins’ nest “was great” and “you can’t beat the views at Metedeconk!”Nothing like a couple of beautiful ladies on the beach to get our attention on a Monday morning!Thanks Brandy for sharing your photo memories!All the best from the beach!By Tim Cafferty, President, Outer Banks Blue Realty Services