Sometimes where we live turns into a magical place. It happens a lot along the Crystal Coast. We are sometimes called the Southern Outer Banks. Actually we are just an extension of the same Outer Banks that is the home to Nags Head, Kitty Hawk, Duck, Corolla, and Hatteras. This a map of the area for those unfamiliar with our piece of paradise.
I consider myself fortunate to have friends still willing and able to visit. When we do get some visitors, I always enjoy spending time on the water with them. I have five areas which I love to show my friends, but to get the most lasting impression, I need to take people on the water more than once at different times. This map provides a good overview of the five areas.
My absolute most favorite thing to do is to take people for a ride on the river early in the morning when the river is calm and unbelievably beautiful. You can get a good feel for that by taking this automatic slide show entitled, Mackerel Morning. Often you can zoom down the White Oak River at over thirty miles per hour with hardly a bump. Sliding around the turns in the soft morning air is a special treat.
Once we get down the river and idle through the no-wake zone in Swansboro Harbor, I often take people over to the marshes behind Huggins Island. This short YouTube video of one of my marsh cruises gives you an idea of the beauty of the area. We will often drift fish in the area and sometime we anchor and fish for whatever is passing through the channel. The view across the marshes that span the area from Swansboro to Bear Island gives you an idea of just how big the marshes are.
If I have someone for more than a few minutes the next place we visit is usually the marshes along the channel that takes you out to Bogue Inlet. Here is a picture of that area. It is a good spot to stop and fish as long as there is not a lot of traffic going in and out of Bogue Inlet. I try to anchor in the area during the middle of the week as traffic increases greatly the closer you get to the weekend.
A morning out on the water is not complete without a visit to Bogue Inlet. As long as the water is calm, it is one of the neatest places on the water. Just looking back from the inlet makes me forget any of my troubles. This picture gives you you a feel for the area. If you look out from Bogue Inlet, all you see is water and a few buoys. You do have to pick and choose your times in Bogue Inlet. It can get rough and then it is not as much fun. However, when you do get out there at the right time, it is picture perfect.
The next spot that I take friends is usually the channel behind Bear Island. The picture at the top of the post was taken there. It is perhaps the most beautiful marsh area that I have ever seen. I never tire of going to the area. I can stay there for a long time even when the fish area not biting.
The last place I take people is usually out on the White Oak River at sunset. When the water and sun cooperate, the scenery can be stunning as you can see from these pictures in an album that I created. I especially enjoy doing this trip in the fall when the warmth from the river can take the chill off a cool evening, but it is also fun in the summer after the heat of the day has disappeared.
By the time I have shown my visitors all these places, they have usually grown pretty fond of the area and start figuring out when they can come back for another visit. I have enjoyed lots of magical places including beaches in Canada but I have never found an another area where there is so much to enjoy and where people fall so easily under the spell of the area.
The great weather helps a lot. While we are in North Carolina and expect heat and humidity in the summer, we do get some nice sea breezes to keep us cool. Our coastal weather changes enough to keep almost anyone happy.
Even if you cannot find a friend like me to take you out on the water, there are plenty of places to escape the crowds. Those with a spirit of adventure can easily rent a kayak and enjoy some peace on the White Oak or in the marshes.
If you planned your visit for this summer, the weather has been great so far. We have only had a couple of rainy days in July. We are dry enough now that those of us who are residents would like to see some rain for our yards and gardens.
This is a great place to fall in love with the water whether you walk the beaches or get on the water with a skiff or a kayak. It is a wonderful place to bring a family to let them enjoy the water.
Our area is filled with people who love the water and who are happy to give you some suggestions on how to have fun. You can also try our Kindle book, A Week at the Beach – The 2013 Emerald Isle Travel Guide. It has even more details about enjoying the area including specific boating, fishing, and beach advice including maps. The book will be able in paperback by the end of July.
The book can make your vacation less stressful by helping you find the best places in the area. It contains suggestions on everything from accommodations to restaurants where you can expect great food and good value. The book provides a link to restaurant recommendations that we update all year. We are just getting ready to add a new restaurant to our list, Captain V.P.’s between the bridges in Swansboro. Watch my View from the Mountain blog for a detailed review in the next few days.
Come visit us and fall in love with our beautiful waters. You will not regret it.