The Cape Hatteras National Seashore (CHNS) announced several recent updates and news items related to recreational activities, closures or cancellations, and seashore conditions on Hatteras and Ocracoke Islands.
News items and events related to the National Seashore for the week of April 9 include the following:
- Most Cape Hatteras National Seashore beaches remain open for the purpose of staying healthy while following federal, state, and county guidelines to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Beach users can help keep these areas open by staying at least 6 feet from each other and by not creating a gathering of 10 or more people in a single location. Additionally, vehicles on the beach should be parked roughly 20 feet apart. Adequate social distancing is easily achievable as there are currently over 58 miles of ocean-facing beaches available to spread out on.
- Night beach driving restrictions begin this Friday at 9 p.m. From May 1 through July 31, priority off-road vehicle (ORV) ramps close at 9 p.m. and reopen the following morning at 6 a.m. All other designated oceanside ORV ramps close at 9 p.m. and reopen at 7 a.m. Night driving restrictions help protect nesting sea turtles. Priority ORV ramps are ramps 2, 4, 5, 27, 43, 44, 48, 49, 70, and 72. While night driving restrictions are in place, visitors may still park their vehicles in parking lots and walk on the beach at night. Soundside ramps, and the Inside Road between ramps 44 and 49, do not have night driving restrictions.
- For current beach access information, go to: http://go.nps.gov/beachaccess. Off-road vehicle permits can be purchased online at www.recreation.gov
- At this time, all indoor facilities at Cape Hatteras National Seashore are currently closed in order to minimize potential spread of COVID-19, consistent with federal, state, and local advisories.
- Outdoor spaces remain open for the purposes of activities described under North Carolina’s Executive Order No. 135, and Dare and Hyde county declarations of emergency. As services are limited, the Seashore urges visitors to continue to practice Leave No Trace principles, including pack-in and pack-out, to keep outdoor spaces safe and healthy.
- The 2020 camping season is postponed until further notice.
- The 2020 lighthouse climbing season is postponed until further notice..