When you think of the Outer Banks (or OBX) you probably think about our beautiful beaches first..and we do have those. But, our “soundside” beaches are also a wonderful place to relax and enjoy the water, especially if you have little ones with you. The waters are calm and you don’t have to worry about getting knocked over by waves. Once upon a time the Jockey’s Ridge State Park bathing area was kind of a secret among the OBX locals but no more.
The bathing area is appealing because the water is shallow and the current is very mild. While the ocean is always a great place to spend a day (or more) while here it can be rough some days especially if there are northeast winds.
Jockey’s Ridge State Park offers programs each season and all are free and open to the public. Some of these are accessible to those who are physically disabled. Please call the park office for more information and to make reservations at 252.441.2588.
A few of the programs are limited to small groups and you will need to pre-register. These include Crabby Clinic, Kayaking, Birding on the Sound, and Go Fly a Kite.
By far the most popular program is Sunset on the Ridge which is held almost every evening during the summer months.
If you are into hiking, Tracks in the Sand is a 1 and ½ mile trail that begins at the parking lot and winds over the dunes. Leisurely pace. Shoes required.
There is a 360-foot boardwalk located near the parking lot and it is perfect for those who prefer a shorter trip or who want to stay off the sand.
The Soundside Nature Trail is a one mile loop that starts at the soundside parking lot and goes to an overlook.
So while a lot of folks think of hang-gliding when you mention Jockey’s Ridge…there is more to the park. Great place for kids and adults.
The entrance to the park is from Carolista Drive in Nags Head near the 12 Milepost on the Bypass (the big road). www.friendsofjockeysridge.com
Until Next Time
Your Outer Banks Blogger