Thursday, the National Park Service (NPS) opened South Beach Road and a
new parking area for public use, with no ORV permit required to access.
The project has been in the works since late 2017.
Beach, or “The Hook,” is the shoreline that is situated just south of
Cape Point, and which is solely open to pedestrians year round, barring
any seasonal wildlife closures. Due to changes to the off road vehicle
management plan that stemmed from the National Defense Authorization
Act for Fiscal Year 2015, the road that leads to this isolated beach
was able to be improved, shortening the walk to the oceanfront.
road is situated along the interdunal road close to ramp 44, and is
currently accessed via the NPS managed Cape Point Campground. Locals
and longtime visitors will remember this route as the original OVR ramp
45, although the former beach road had not been altered or improved in
years, until the project began.
road itself is approximately 6-12” higher due to the addition of clay
and shell material, and an unpaved parking area that can accommodate
25-30 vehicles has be added to the end of the road, just behind the
new road and parking area has also reduced the current walk to South
Beach from the Cape Point Campground by roughly 1/3 mile.
are currently some limitations to pedestrian access due to American
oystercatcher nesting and nesting activity around the entire South
Beach area. From the beachfront near the South Beach parking area,
pedestrians can currently walk 0.2 miles to the west (towards ramp 48),
and 0.4 miles to the east (towards Cape Point).
complete], anybody will have the ability to drive down this road and
park at the end,” said Cape Hatteras National Seashore Superintendent
David Hallac in an earlier interview regarding the project. “We will
recommend high clearance or 4WD vehicles - just because it is a park
road - but anyone will be able to drive down, park at the designated
area, and walk out and enjoy the beach.”