National Park Service (NPS)

Park Service to begin rebuild of lifeguard beach walkway, pre-nesting areas set, campground dates expanded, online purchase of ORV permits

Cape Hatteras National SeashoreCape Hatteras National Seashore personnel are scheduled to start rebuilding the public beach access boardwalk March 28.

Improvements will include installing a sidewalk along the south edge of the existing parking lot, providing a 10-foot by 10-foot concrete apron adjacent to the sidewalk, installing a new ADA-accessible boardwalk with pre-cast concrete decking and aluminum handrails, and providing a new ocean viewing platform near the end of the boardwalk.

Work is scheduled to conclude by Memorial Day.lifeguard beach PS IMG_6304

During the construction period, visitors will have limited access to the comfort station and shower facilities. A marked foot trail to the beach is provided from the comfort station.

Pre-nesting Areas for 2016 Shorebird Breeding Season

To protect breeding habitat for important shorebirds, Cape Hatteras National Seashore (Seashore) staff are implementing pre-nesting restriction areas on several beach locations. During the winter, staff conducted annual assessments of preferred breeding habitat for piping plover, Wilson’s plover, American oystercatcher, and colonial nesting water birds. All pre-nesting areas will be marked by April 15 and all informational maps and supporting information will be posted at: http://www.nps.gov/caha/learn/prenest.htm.

Pre-nesting areas do not impede off-road vehicle (ORV) or pedestrian access. The pre-nesting areas are established based on the recent breeding history at the Seashore and the actual habitat conditions observed during the annual assessment.

As the birds arrive and begin to establish territories, Park staff may be required to modify these delineations depending on where the breeding territories are established.

Site-specific restrictions are posted at each location to provide the most accurate and up-to-date status.

The Park encourages visitors to observe these unique breeding activities from a safe distance thereby ensuring the continued survival of these species unimpaired for future generations.

Online purchase of beach-driving permits

ORV permits are available online by visiting www.recreation.gov website, or at the following park locations: Bodie Island Lighthouse Visitor Center (8210 Bodie Island Lighthouse Rd, Nags Head), Cape Hatteras Lighthouse Visitor Center (46368 Lighthouse Road, Buxton), and the Ocracoke Visitor Center (40 Irvin Garrish Highway).

The permit offices are open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., year-round, seven days a week, except Christmas Day, with expanded hours on weekends and holidays during the summer season.

The cost of an annual permit (valid for the calendar year) is $120.  A seven-day ORV permit (valid from the date issued) costs $50.

For more information, call 252-473-2111, or visit the park webpage at: http://www.nps.gov/caha/planyourvisit/off-road-vehicle-use.htm.

Expanded campground dates

camground PS IMG_6305Camping in the Cape Hatteras National Seashore camping season will be expanded this year. All four campgrounds–Oregon Inlet, Cape Point, Frisco and Ocracoke–will be open April 15 through Nov. 28.

All campgrounds accommodate tents, trailers and motor homes up to 35 feet. Each campground also provides rest rooms, potable water, showers, grills and picnic tables. No hookups (utility connections) are available.