North Carolina's Southern Outer Banks & Crystal Coast


A Wet Early Fall 2015
We had some great days as fall arrived in late September. Then the skies opened and the moon started pulling water towards us

It turned out to be even wetter than the damp pattern that gave us 27.4 inches of rain from June 1 through August 31.

The wet weather that stayed with us until October 6 also coincided with high lunar tides. On October 12 our rainfall total since June 1 was up to 43.25 inches.

All that rain and high tides gave us
the highest water in the marshes that we have seen since Hurricane Irene.

Raymond’s Gut, the body of water that runs behind our home and out to the White Oak River, claimed lots of extra territory during the high water. Many of the normal marsh edges were swamped like the marsh grass in this picture.

The boardwalk around
our neighborhood clubhouse was level with the water. It felt funny paddling around in my kayak and seeing our boardwalk lower than the seat of my kayak. There was also water on both sides of the boardwalk. That is a rare in our subdivision.

However, we cannot complain about the storm which devastated South Carolina along with other areas along the coast.
Our precipitation was minor. Other than the temporary high water and very wet yards that are just now drying out in the middle of October, we had no real problems along the western side of Carteret County. Things were different Down East and in other counties.

Once the sun did come out, our waters headed back to normal levels. October 18, had one of the lowest tides in a while and was also the coldest October 18 at 41F since I started keeping records nine years ago. There are reports that the surf has finally started to clear up but the sound is still dirty after all the early October rainfall. Seven plus inches of rain will cause will add some color to the water.

If like me you are used to blue skies, sunshine and blue waters, it is hard to adjust when it seems that the good weather has run out.

We know from
past experience that Fall belongs to the Crystal Coast. Those wonderful falls have conditioned us to anticipate great fall weather and hold to the belief that beach season does not end with August.

However, there were some days in early October that tested even the optimism of the best of us.

I did manage to walk the beach a few times between storms. I also enjoyed a miraculous Saturday, October 3rd, when I kayaked in the high water and enjoyed some spectacular blue skies. While I was kayaking, areas to the south of us were being soaked.

It is a good thing that there have been plenty of other opportunities to
enjoy the water and the beaches during September and late summer. You cannot complain about a spectacular summer like 2015 with lots of fantastic beach time shoehorned in between a few rainy days that delivered a lot of precipitation.

While I have not had the time to kayak and boat as much as I would like this season,
what kayaking I have managed has been memorable. My time in our skiff has been limited this summer, but I have enjoyed some nice rides down the river to Swansboro.

Fishing has also been slow this year but I did bring home a nice two pound flounder not long ago. With the
Crystal Coast's strong tradition of fall fishing I suspect there will be more fish this fall.
fall fishing along the Crystal Coast
With the wet spell of fall weather behind us and a very nice summer under our belt, things look great as far as we can see along the Crystal Coast. While it rain'ed a lot, the Seafood Festival in Morehead City, the Mullet Festival in Swansboro, and Mumfest in New Bern all managed to survive the challenging weather.

Now in spite of the cold front bringing some thirties to areas west of us, we can hope for a long Indian summer. We have had some of those summer like days this week. Our
fall garden is growing well in spite of our spell of wet weather. Coming on the heels of a great summer for vegetable gardening in Carteret County, I am already starting to think about the tomato seeds that I will order for planting in mid-January.

With a strong El Nino pattern, we might avoid some of the cold that challenged us last February. However, I long ago learned that just when you think you have the weather figured out that it will surprise you.

It will not be long before we send out our next newsletter. We cover many topics including weather, fishing, beach reports and local news, you will even find reviews of local restaurants as new ones pop up. We will be talking about a new Greek restaurant in Swansboro in the next edition. If you would like to subscribe to our monthly newsletter, just click on this link and register by providing your email address. Your email address is only used for the newsletter.

For more quick information about the area head for
our free online guide to Emerald Isle. If you are really interested in the area, our 142 page travel guide is invaluable. It is available for as little at $3.99 for the Kindle version. We update it every summer. If you are in the area and want to have a look at a paper copy, stop by the Emerald Isle tourist bureau. For more information on our books click on this link.

Why we love it here?
While no place is perfect, the Crystal Coast presents us with many options besides beaches that make life here very appealing.

Living by the water is not for everyone, but we really enjoy everything from
waves on the beach to the warmth of an evening on the beach or even the power of the ocean you feel standing in the surf.

The magic of the river or our other waters is never far away. Sometimes the big water calls and other times I get seduced by the river and the fog. There are few places where you can have such wonderful November days on the beach.

In the summer there are times when
the heat will not seem to go away but there are ways to deal with the heat or humidity and even escape our paltry crowds.

We typically have plenty of summer weather, but we do have four seasons here including
some cold weather every few years. That just makes the other three seasons besides winter seem even nicer.

Crystal Coast, Salt Water on Your Feet site also has a number of articles for people considering a move to the Crystal Coast.

To make life even better here on the coast, I would recommend a visit to our wonderful church home at
Cape Carteret Presbyterian Church. We love to have visitors especially during our monthly fellowship luncheons.

Our quiet spot sheltered by Bogue Banks, the Croatan National Forest, and the Cape Lookout National Seashore is a very friendly and scenic area with a great future. Right now it is the spot for us and sometimes I think I am living in a time and place that cannot survive the pressures of the modern world forever. I am just happy to be here now and able to share it with my children and grandchild.

This is
a link to a simple map of the area. There are more detailed ones in our Emerald Isle Travel Guide.

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