CAPE HATTERAS OUTER BANKS NORTH CAROLINA: HOT AND HUMID!

HOT AND HUMID!

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Our new sun shade: I love it.

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Kayaking on the Sound

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I could stop there with just hot and humid, but there is a lot more to the Outer Banks than just the weather.  The Outer Banks are a long stretch of barrier islands and sand dunes that separate the Atlantic from the coast and the Pamlico Sound.  They are almost 200 miles long.   You can find wild mustangs near Corolla, fishing, crabbing, sailing, kayaking, kite sailing, wind surfing, dolphins, whales, off-roading on beaches and sand dunes, Light Houses, the Wright Brothers Memorial, the North Carolina Aquarium, swimming, hang gliding on famous Jockey Ridge, and Cape Hatteras National park.  We didn’t do all of those activities, but did see quite a lot of the Cape Hatteras area and Ocracoke Island.

We camped at Frisco Woods Camping for RV’s and tents.  It was a nice campground, but so crowded during Labor Day you were squeezed in like sardines.  But, that was probably true of most campgrounds over the Labor Day weekend.

Our first venture was to Ocracoke Island, only accessible by an hour’s ferry ride.  It is a quaint little island that reminds one of Hawaii many years ago.  There is a lighthouse there, first lit in 1854. It is the oldest operating lighthouse in North Carolina and is in the National Register of Historic Places.  Most people on the island get around by golf cart.  We spent the better part of the day there and had lunch at the marina.  (Dogs allowed on the deck)

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After a day of hanging around the campground, the next day we drove to the Cape Hatteras lighthouse.  It is 210 feet tall and the tallest brick lighthouse in America.  Lennard walked to the top while I waited with the dogs.  The heat that day was about 92 degrees with 90 % humidity.

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Next we drove to the Wright Brothers Memorial in Kill Devil Hills, NC.  It is located near where Wilbur and Orville Wright first flew in a powered, heavier-than-air machine, for a sustained distance.  The focal point of the memorial is a spectacular stone monument. There is also a life size sculpture of the first flight and the famous photograph by John T. Daniels.  It is really something to see.

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To end the day we walked across part of the dunes at Jockey’s Ridge State Park in Nags Head.  Not too far though, as the sand was hot that day for little four footed girls.  It is the largest sand dune on the East Coast.  It is also the most visited park in the North Carolina parks system.  And that is a lot of sand!

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We decided to have a crab fest with our neighbors, Billy and Susan from Virginia. Well, the great crab catchers, Lennard and Billy used crab nets for several hours and what did they catch…nothing.  But, the crabs got away with a lot of chicken necks for sure.  Fortunately our other neighbor, Roy, felt sorry for us and brought us 2 crabs so we would have something to eat.

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Lennard learning how to crack and eat crab.

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The next morning Billy and Susan took us for a ride on the beach in their 4X4.  Did we get stuck? Of course!  What would a day on the beach be without getting stuck?  We did get out quickly, as Billy is an expert on the sand.

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We met a lot of nice people here including Billy and Susan, Rob and Kendra, Donna and Rick, and Diane, Steve and Roy.

We are ready for the next part of our journey…a drive down the Blue Ridge Parkway to the Smokey Mountains and our Tiffin Ralley.

Moving up the OregonCoast

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After a wonderful visit with my brother and sister-in-law, we headed over to the 101 via the 20. Oops, a little winding and narrow and harrowing.  We managed to get up the coast to the Willits KOA campground where two men helped us back into the narrow site. Lennard made beer drinking friends and played “Corn Hole”. (Something like horseshoes only with beer)

On Sunday we drove through the Avenue of the Giants in the redwoods.  Absolutely stunning. The redwoods are sentinels of time, withstanding fire and tree plagues. They can live for thousands of years, grow to over 300 feet and can be as wide as 20 feet.  The famous drive thru tree is 17 feet wide.

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On Monday the plan was to stay in the Jedidiah Smith State Park.  What was I thinking?  We almost got stuck in the entrance. The road was so narrow I had to get out to make sure we didn’t hit anything leaving.  We found a lovely campground just down the road…The Hiouchi RV resort.  We spent the rest of the day hiking through the spectacular Stout Grove of magnificent redwoods.
On the way to the redwoods, we drove along the coast and stopped at the Mystery Trees Visitor Center and took their one mile hike through the redwoods.
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The next day we drove back  Klamath to go to the drive through tree.  It is one of three in the world, all of which are in the redwoods.
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The rest of the day was spent back in Crescent City at the absolutely beautiful Battery Point Lighthouse, perched high on a hill.  It was first lit in 1856. You can only go over to it when the tide is at its lowest.  It was one of the first lighthouses on the Oregon coast. Dogs are not allowed, so don’t tell anyone we took them up anyway.
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On Wednesday we had Norwegian fish and chips along the highway.  They were fabulous.
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We arrived late at the Whaler’s Rest RV Park.  This is a Thousand Trails Encore Park and is set in the woods along the coast.  We love it here and got the Passport America discount too! They have a trail that leads to the beach which we took a walk along this morning.
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Just in case you were counting. We have now made it over two weeks, over 1,000 miles and seen three states.
On Thursday we went into historic Newport over the historic bridge and saw the harbor.
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Newport also has the oldest, wooden light house on this coast, set in the Yaquina Park.
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We also saw the Yaquina Head Lighthouse made of brick, which has been standing sine 1873. It was originally known as the Cape Foulweather Lighthouse as the fog was so bad on the coast.  We had a lot of foul fog today too! The lens was made in Paris and shipped to Oregon.  At least it made it! It is now operated by the Coast Guard and the US Fish and Wildlife Service.
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Since we didn’t have lunch, we stopped for dinner at a fresh Crab place on the highway. Lennard had oysters and fresh  Halibut.  I had chicken tenders.  What a wimp I am.
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By the way, we saw an example of some type of natural or environmental oddity on the beaches all along the coast.  We were told it was the largest dying off of jellyfish that has been seen in years.  Maybe we should rethink our environmental policies.
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A late Happy Birthday to Frank and sorry we missed the party!! Keep track of us on Life 360, Right Rich?
Take care!