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Nags Head


Jeb
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Arrived at 6pm Thursday Oct 7. First I threw footballs with a few of my friends. On Thursday there were not many of us there, only about 5 people. It took me 5 hours to get there. My first impressions of Nags Head when I first arrived was the sweet smell of the salt air and the downright chilly weather.

 

In 2002 when we went down there it was 80 degrees with 70 degree DPs and cloudy with rain and 20mph winds.

 

In 2003 when we went down there it was 73 degrees with 64 degree DPs with clouds and rain and 25 to 40mph winds. That was roughly 3 weeks after Isabel hit them, and many of the wooden beach access walkways and stairways were totally wrecked. It took me three hours to find a way onto the beach in 2003. The dunes had been eroded by Isabel's waves. Some of the dunes had been eroded back 60 feet! The beach was very flat and very wide at low tide back in early October 2003.

 

This year it was sunny at Nags Head but very chilly. I had been looking forward to my cherished 77/64 Temperature/Dewpoint spread, my preferred OBX weather, but nature had other plans. It was chilly. When we arrived on Thursday afternoon it was about 69 degrees with 53 degree dewpoints with a 13 mph wind on top of it.

 

It was MUCH chillier than I had anticipated. I had brought my light jacket but NOT my sweatpants. Still, I had a good time. My right foot was really hurting me badly and I had a very difficult time enjoying my jebwalk. In fact jebwalking was nearly impossible.

 

At 8pm I walked a half mile north to 116 Sea Spray Ct, in Nags Head Village (Milepost 15.5) where we had stayed in 2003, on October 10 through 14. It was dark by that time, and I had a hard time trying to figure out just where 116 Sea Spray Ct was. Later, on Sunday afternoon I would see the signs, but this was after dark on Thursday and I could barely see anything at all. The sand near the rebuilt walkways was deep and loose and had furrows a foot deep and this was very, very painful to my right foot, which was hurting a lot. The wooden access walkways that Hurricane Isabel had damaged in 2003 had all been rebuilt. I finally managed to locate the rebuilt walkway to 116 Sea Spray Court. The last time I had been here was on October 14 2003 when the end of the walkway had been broken and hanging precariously, dangling over the beach 8 to 10 feet below. It had been chilly and raining and windy at the time. Well, the walkway had been rebuilt with a new stairway. There was sand banked up against the old Isabel-created cliff, I was unsure as to whether the sand had been placed there or if it had drifted there over the past year. Probably it was both. Anyhow I walked up the rebuilt walkway and I could clearly see where the new wood started and the old wood ended. The house was unoccupied and dark. I walked up to the gate and saw the hot tub and small pool and the nice house where we had such a great time last year. I was really glad that I finally had a chance to see it again after a whole year.

 

Then I walked back to the beach and managed to locate the walkway that led to Sea Spray Court. This was a wooden access walkway that was reserved for Sea Spray guests. Back in 2003 when we stayed at 106, 111, and 116 Sea Spray Court, this was the only existing walkway to the beach. All of the other wooden access walkways were severely damaged by Hurricane Isabel. There were wooden decks dangling at crazy angles over beaches 10 to 14 feet below. I personally walked by and observed this in October 2003, three weeks after Isabel thrashed the heck outa Nags Head.

I mentioned the loose sand near the access walkways that I was forced to negotiate in the darkness as I tried to locate the reserved Sea Spray access walkway. This loose sand had deep furrows in it from three-wheeled recreational vehicles that had been driven over the beach, the kind the Nags Head Lifeguards use. Those deep furrows of sand gave my right foot absolute hell. I could not see the sand very well in the dark, and I tripped over these furrows of sand, over and over and over again and that aggravated my right foot a lot.

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Then I finally found the reserved Sea Spray Ct walkway. This walkway had been intact when we visited last year, and it was just as I remembered it to be except there was more sand piled up under it, most likely from sand having been placed there and from lateral drifting of sand over the past year. Last year I dubbed this walkway the 110 runway because it has a sign near it in Sea Spray court that says 110 right at the entrance to the runway.

 

So I happily and amazedly walked down the Sea Spray 110 runway and I saw Sea Spray Court again!!! It was pretty much the same except the bushes had a year's worth of growth on them and there had been some additions and the grass in front of the main house we stayed in last year, 116 Sea Spray, had been converted into a miniature golf green. But the house was the same, there was the dolphin in front of the house just like last year, where we had all posed for our group picture on Sunday October 13 2003. I walked on the right side of the house past a bush that was much taller than last year, to the front of the neighboring house, 115 Sandpepper (or Sandfiddler) court and walked across the front of the house then walked over a bush that bent down about a foot when I stepped on it and eased my way around the corner of the next house, 114 Sandpepper, walked across the front of that house then took their access walkway back to the beach. Just like last year when we stayed at 116 Sea Spray, 114 Sandpepper was unoccupied and dark. Yeah there is a 2003 story behind the 114 Sandpepper access walkway too.

 

Last year, 2003, when I first got to Nags Head, it was on Friday October 11 at 2pm when we arrived. I went into the house, 116 Sea Spray and went to the 3rd floor and looked out at the ocean and the clouds and chilly rain, 70 degrees with a 63 degree dewpoint. I could see the end of the wooden beach access walkway had been smashed by Hurricane Isabel three weeks before. Folks on the Outer Banks would prefer that we do not walk on the sand dunes. The only way to the beach at the OBX is by using the wooden beach access walkways. Well, they were smashed up by Isabel. So, I looked around. I walked up Sea Spray Court and turned left onto a small walkway next to a hedge and walked south. This small walkway led to E. Baymeadow Drive. I followed E. Baymeadow Dr. to another road near a sign that says Nags Head Village. That road leads to the Dune hotel. I called it Dunes Landing back in 2003. So I took the public access at the Dunes hotel back to the beach. The Dunes hotel public access to the beach was the only beach access in October 2003 because after Hurricane Isabel, that was the only beach access for a good while. Shortly after I discovered the Dunes Landing access to the beach, I walked the beach back to the wrecked 116 Sea Spray beach access and examined it from below.

 

It was way too dangerous to even try getting up onto the wrecked beach access from the beach, a section of the wooden beach access was dangling about 8 feet above the beach. Plus, people are not allowed to walk on the dunes. I did try to improvise a kind of walkway up the 8 foot dune cliff with an old 10 foot piece of driftwood, but I gave that up after a while. I did not want to try digging into what was left of the dune.

 

This was when I discovered what I came to call the Sandpepper-Benji access. Once I realized that I could not get back on our wrecked beach access, I then realized I would have to walk all the way back around, through the Dunes Landing public beach access (which is a kind of concrete driveway covered with sand) and back around to 116 Sea Spray Ct and I was tired (I had not gotten enough sleep the night before, I had been much too much excited about going to Nags Head to even think about sleeping), wet and it was still raining and windy and I realized that I just had to find a shortcut back. This was about the time that I saw a big mound of sand that led ten feet up to a deck. So I went up there, more out of desperation than anything else. The deck had a walkway that led to an unoccupied house!!!! I followed the walkway back to 114 Sandpepper Ct. It turned out that it was only 2 doors south of 116 Sea Spray Ct where I was staying! Yeah I had found the Sandpepper accessway!! I showed it to Carlos later that night!

 

 

I did not discover the 110 runway (the wooden beach access reserved only for Sea Spray guests) until late that Friday. I had seen that walkway but I had assumed it was wrecked by Hurricane Isabel also. But late that Friday evening I walked on it out of curiosity and then I found it went all the way to the beach and that it was undamaged. I noted the sign near it that read "110" and thus I dubbed this walkway the 110 runway.

 

After that, beach access was a piece of cake, we simply strolled down the 110 runway to our beach and kicked back.

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I REALLY MISS NAGS HEAD ALREADY.................

 

 

 

All I can say is, I had a really great time on the OBX and I wish I could spend a whole month on a nice warm Georgia beach, the OBX was a bit chilly........... highs in the 60s with DPs in the upper 40s.

 

Yep I caught the OBX beach bug again and I wish to God I could go spend a month kicking back on some nice warm 83 degrees with a 67 degree dewpoint beach with all my singles group friends!! :)

 

Ahh.................the salt air.............the sea gulls..........the waves..........the sunsets.................wonderful times spent on the beach with good friends..............a nice rousing game of football on the beach.................just the realization of actually BEING at the beach................the night before we left, I was SO DARN EXCITED ABOUT GOING TO THE OBX, I could not sleep!!!

 

Just a nice, long, leisurely jebwalk on the beach, warm wind blowing........all my very best friends there with me............

 

 

I really would rather that fall and winter would just wait a couple more weeks, just for me.................

 

Maaan it's SOOOO chilly here in N VA at 46 dismal degrees with a freezing-cold dewpoint of 41 degrees.............it's just not fair! :( It's really no fair at all!!!

 

I want to go back to the OBX so bad..........or any nice warm beach...............just to kick back with my friends and enjoy some beach football and take in some delightfully warm rays.........and the wonderful foaming ocean waves are but a few short steps away.................... :) :) :)

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