Wednesday, August 22, 2012

A trip to Cedar Island in the OBX

If you read my last post about my frustrations with the beach closures in the Cape Hatteras National Seashore, you will understand why i decided to venture south. You can visit that post here: Cape Hatteras......Yes It Is That Time Again.There are some good pics from my recent visit there, but i was disappointed that I couldn't get to the end of Hatteras Inlet or the end of Ocracoke for those breathtaking sunsets. My frustrations are probably the same as a lot of visitors who can't get to their favorite spots and apparently there is a bill going to the senate to try and get the beaches opened again. I don't even know what to think about it all. I care very much for the towns in Cape Hatteras and i care even more for the island itself, the wildlife and the sheer existence of it all. I know the community is saying they are hurting financially from the closures. The sheer fact that i ventured south to take my rental money elsewhere is a good example of what the beach closures are doing. But i will say this: Now that i have visited a different island, i will always come back to Cape Hatteras. There is nothing like it and never will be. Even with the closures, i will continue to return year after year. Cedar Island is beautiful though and i am glad i visited. For anyone thinking of venturing south like me, I thought i would share some photos and a little bit of my experience on this remote and deserted little town on the sound.  
Cedar Island is typically just a place for people passing through on their way to and from the OBX from the south. We came from the north, stopped in Hatteras for a night, ferried to Ocracoke and then traveled to the end of Ocracoke for a 2.2 hour ride on the Ocracoke - Cedar Island Ferry. These big beautiful boats were amazing! 
These ferries have 2 massive areas for vehicles and a beautiful upper deck with tons of seating for this amazing ride on the sea. 
The views are breathtaking.
When the ferry docked, we were very excited to explore the coastline. 
What I didn't expect was that this lovely coastline was actually DESERTED. We were literally, the only people staying there. All the homes were basically, vacation homes that were never used. Some were still damaged from Hurricane Irene.
So empty. And wonderful.
We stayed in this adorable little trailer home with a long deck that leads to the Sound.
The rooftop deck and beachfront deck both had wonderful views of the water, the sunrise and the Ferry.
One evening, a storm system was rolling across the island, making its way to Hatteras and Ocracoke. I managed to capture this lightning picture above using a 20 second exposure. The sun was setting to the left as the storm was moving right. I captured some spectacular time lapse footage as well. Still in editing mode, so check back the final cut. 
During sunsets, we would walk along the beach and enjoy the scenery. It was remote, relaxing and a great place to get away from, well, everyone else. But as beautiful as it was, it just wasn't Hatteras Island {below}
The last road at Hatteras Island's Ramp 55.
Cape Hatteras might have beach closures and less business. It might be a political nightmare between parties. It might be a battle between residents, vacationers, business owners, fisherman and wildlife activists. But at the end of the day, it is still the most amazing natural place on the east coast. It is still perfection - where the earth ends and begins. It is still open enough for people to enjoy and wildlife to prosper. I will always come back, year after year-  as long as it is above water - which might not be for long. So enjoy it while it lasts. I know i will. 
Love,
Me.

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