Don’t Panic Beach nourishment is happening.
Here’s why it’s not going to ruin your vacation.
There’s no deigning it. Beach life is basically the best life. We’ve got great surf, warm sand, ample fishing, and killer sunrises. But like all things, it does come with some downsides. In exchange for granting us these beautiful beaches, Mother Natures take her toll in the form of strong winds and summer storms that cause our little peninsula to shift and change constantly. Inlets, sandbars, and sometimes houses can be there one day and gone the next as hurricanes whip through and our shores erode.
Fortunately, clever minds have found a way to cheat Mother Nature, and keep those shorelines right where we want them. The process is called beach nourishment. Construction crews dredge up sand from places it isn’t needed and pump in into places where it is, turning thin, washed up beaches into nice wide expanses with plenty of room for everyone’s umbrellas.
Nags Head had their beaches done in 2011, and this summer it’s Duck, Southern Shores, Kitty Hawk, Kill Devil Hills, and Buxton’s turn. It may seem a little crazy that the construction is happening right when tourist season is at its peak, but summer is the safest time for the crews to be dredging offshore. The summertime construction is a necessary evil, needed to maintain our lovely beaches and keep our homes and businesses from disappearing into the drink.
The key to not letting it ruin your vacation is a visit to MoreBeachToLove.com. The site is maintained by the county and the individual towns, and they’ve promised to keep it as up-to-date as possible.
First, take a look at when each town will be experiencing construction. The times are estimated, but right now they expect that construction will be happening:
- in Duck from late May to late July
- in Buxton from the beginning of June to the end of August
- in Kitty Hawk from late June to late August
- in Kill Devil Hills from early August to early-mid September.
- in Southern Shores will be for 7 days in early July
So if you like, you can choose your rental home at a time and a place where construction isn’t likely to be happening.
Once you’re here, check back at the More Beach To Love website for their interactive map showing exactly when and where beach nourishment is happening. The project takes place on 1,000 foot sections of beach for three to five days at a time. During that time there will be 24-hour lights, noise, and parts of that 1,000 foot stretch will be closed. The map will show you which parts of the beach are closed, and which parts are free of construction chaos. It will also show completed sections of beach, so you can rush out and be the first one to build a sand castle on it. (The new sand will look a little dark, but don’t worry, it’ll bleach out soon)
Nobody likes construction, but hopefully with the tools the county has provided you can stay well clear of it, and still enjoy your Outer Banks vacation. The crews are working as fast as they can to keep our beaches big and beautiful, and to ensure our incredible beach life is here to stay, no matter what Mother Nature throws at us.