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Old 02-03-2012, 05:17 AM   #1
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Outer Banks, NC trails advice

My S.O. suggested for our vacation this year that we take Slushie (the new Jeep) to the Outer Banks for a week and do some wheelin' (O.M.G. I think she's finally coming around to the fact that I bought a Jeep!).

I am very familiar with the Outer Banks, I am NOT, however, familiar with the wheelin'. If we head to the north, we can play on the dunes in Corolla. If we head south (Crystal Coast is my FAVORITE, personally) then we can hit Croatan.

I was looking for feedback on either of those places KEEPING IN MIND that I am new to this and am really only looking for easy trails to gain some experience on.

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Old 02-03-2012, 12:13 PM   #2
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I'm gona subscribe to this one. I'm going there for the 4th of July week, and just thinking last night how to get to some trails! awesome hopefully some people will reply

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Old 02-03-2012, 12:29 PM   #3
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Subscribed. I'll be there this spring
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Old 02-03-2012, 06:32 PM   #4
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Sorry to sound like a buzz-kill but....

There isn't much in the way of "wheeling" on the north end. You shouldn't be playing on the dunes at all. The sand is pretty deep near the ramps but they are what connects the neighborhoods to the beach up there. Really not an ideal spot to wheel. While there are some sippy holes on these "neighborhood" roads you have to remember that they are just that... neighborhood streets and not trails. The resident owners and local law enforcement will stop you if your are tear-assing around.
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Old 02-03-2012, 07:54 PM   #5
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Well thanks, and we appreciate the heads up! Any other locations that are fun and not monitored?
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Old 02-06-2012, 05:14 AM   #6
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Sorry to sound like a buzz-kill but....

There isn't much in the way of "wheeling" on the north end. You shouldn't be playing on the dunes at all. The sand is pretty deep near the ramps but they are what connects the neighborhoods to the beach up there. Really not an ideal spot to wheel. While there are some sippy holes on these "neighborhood" roads you have to remember that they are just that... neighborhood streets and not trails. The resident owners and local law enforcement will stop you if your are tear-assing around.
You're not a buzzkill - but, you are wrong.

In Corolla, where Hwy 12 ends, you are allowed to use the sand trails. Yes, there are rules to follow which I have already read through, but if you read my original post, I said nothing about "tear-assing" around. Also, you are allowed to drive on some beaches throughout the Outer Banks - you just need to check the maps and time of year to know where/when you can and which permit you might need.

Sorry if my use of the words "dunes" or "wheelin" confused you. I would never tear up the dunes of our Outer Banks - hell, it's against the law just to pick a sea oat off them.

The new guidelines for off roading the OBX was just released on Jan. 23rd. You can find more info here: Off Road on the Outer Banks

More info on the trails in Corolla: Corolla Recreation | Corolla Guide

Lastly, Croatan most definitely allows for OHV on the Black Swamp Trail: National Forests in North Carolina - Black Swamp OHV Trail
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Old 02-06-2012, 12:37 PM   #7
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Charlie, thanks for your links. I've been planning my vacation all of my lunch break! Those links lead to other links, and I'm so excited! thanks!!!!
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Old 02-06-2012, 07:30 PM   #8
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My If we head to the north, we can play on the dunes in Corolla.

I was looking for feedback on either of those places KEEPING IN MIND that I am new to this
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You're not a buzzkill - but, you are wrong. In Corolla, where Hwy 12 ends, you are allowed to use the sand trails. Yes, there are rules to follow which I have already read through
I'm just trying to help you out here no need to get defensive. I own property on Swan Beach and I am very much familiar with the rules that govern to roads up there. I'll make this as clear as I can.... HWY 12 North where the pavement ends is not an offroad park. Think of it as a ocean adjacent dirt road.

Good link about the north end of Hwy 12.
Currituck County Beach Regulations

Also you'd better check that Croatan link. Their OHV trails are for ATV and UTV's only. Nothing with a wheelbase longer than 50 inches.

Certainly go up there for a great time. I just don't want someone going up there with wheeling on their agenda only to have their vacation ruined by the authorities. I've seen it happen too many times. Go there, lock the hubs, and drive around until you're blue in the face. It is very fun and I highly recommend everyone experience it at least once. Start hitting every hole you see and trying to sling dirt and you are likely to run into problems.
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Old 02-07-2012, 04:54 AM   #9
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No worries, Billdo. I actually wasn't getting defensive. Just trying to find clear info so that I don't inadvertantly become one of those people that go out there and screw things up. I have no interest in pissing off the local residents or authorities. I'm just trying to educate myself. Your post was contrary to other stuff I had found and so I'm trying to find clarifications.

Good catch on the Croatan wheelbase - I completely missed that one. That's the kind of helpful info I'm looking for.

I appreciate your input and the link. That's the same list of rules I had found. It's good to have someone who has been there confirm that for me.
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Old 02-07-2012, 08:28 AM   #10
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Have yall gone on those Corolla Beach Jeep tours where you can see the horses? or is that a waste of time & money?
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Old 02-07-2012, 11:09 AM   #11
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Skip the tours and just follow them. They usually know the horse locations. Driving out to the north end is certainly something to do. It is amazing up there and you'll be wondering how all those big ass house get built.
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Old 02-08-2012, 09:31 AM   #12
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As has been said, up past Corolla isn't really "trail riding", but more like a sandy road. That being said, it's still a blast to do. It's still fun to pop off the main sand and follow the "roads" back into the neighborhoods. There are some fun turns, climbs and I've been lucky enough to see the horses back there multiple times. But, it's still a neighborhood essentially, and you can't be too crazy back there.

I haven't been in a couple of years, but you can go out on the sand at Oregon Inlet as well, which isn't occupied by houses. You still can't openly tear around, but that's another option.
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Old 02-13-2012, 06:52 PM   #13
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Great thread guys, just subscribed... So I am getting vacation plans together with the fam and OBX has been an annual thing for 20 years for me. This is the first year I will have a jeep to go down with. Can't wait. I will be going the week after 4th of July.
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Old 02-21-2012, 01:52 PM   #14
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The National Park Service has recently changed the law about beach driving on Hatteras Island.


Here is the link explaining the law and the permits required. They will also be limiting access throughout the island.

https://www.federalregister.gov/arti...off-road#p-249


Please check out this link and sign the petition to repeal the law.
Pass it along to all your friends!

Human Rights Petition: The U.S. Senate: Remove the "ORV Rule & Keep the Beaches Open & Provide Free & Open Access" | Change.org
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Old 02-21-2012, 03:32 PM   #15
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Hello,
I take my family there once a year to live the good life! The place is great. I recommend you go in and talk to the guy working at the beach jeep place and for no charge he will gladly talk to you about where to go to see the horses and where to use caution. It is truly a one of a kind driving experience, not big time wheeling but about as much fun if not more so. The south side just past the ferry to ocracoke island (spelling is jacked im sure) is a nice long strip of beach that you can ride as well. It seems less watched down there and I was able to have a little more fun slinging some sand around due to it not being a residential area i guess. I have heard however that as of the 2012 year they are going to start charging for beach driving access which is a sad day indeed. Ive heard $50 per week pass so plan on that also. You will love riding the beaches and I suggest taking some wood and having a campfire while your out there, amazing fun.
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Old 03-01-2012, 08:12 PM   #16
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Thanks Drock!
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Old 03-03-2012, 01:23 PM   #17
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Quote:
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Please check out this link and sign the petition to repeal the law.
Pass it along to all your friends!

Human Rights Petition: The U.S. Senate: Remove the "ORV Rule & Keep the Beaches Open & Provide Free & Open Access" | Change.org
Signed. Thanks for the link and the info. I will be heading up there this summer myself.
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Old 03-28-2012, 11:33 PM   #18
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We're planning on going to OBX in late summer for a family vacation. Did the horse tour last time we were there, and loved the drive - and noticed that the guys fishing didn't have to worry about flinging a sinker in some kids ear at the public beaches- -so I'm working on buying my first Jeep! (looking at TJ's if I can find one without frame rot)
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Old 04-12-2012, 02:26 PM   #19
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I have been out on the north end above Corolla and saw some of the horses, but that has been a while.

A few years ago I had a great time taking the ferry over to Ocracoke and riding down the beach there. Came out near Howards Pub for a great break.

Just make sure to know which ramps are open. Went out around the Hatteras lighthouse and they had some of the ramps closed, lots of loose sand that made it a little more than a leisurely ride down the beach.

Heading back out the end of May and staying in Waves. can't wait!
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Old 04-24-2012, 10:57 AM   #20
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When you get back on hwy 12 at Corolla after coming off the beach where do you air your tires back up? Or do I need to take a compressor?
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Old 04-24-2012, 01:46 PM   #21
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When you get back on hwy 12 at Corolla after coming off the beach where do you air your tires back up? Or do I need to take a compressor?
im sure everyone will beat me for saying this but i have never aired down on the beaches there, just no need.
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Old 04-25-2012, 07:32 AM   #22
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I have a coworker that grew up in Southern Shores. He said there are gas stations (and a carwash) within a few miles of coming off the beach on 12.

It is pretty well packed in right off of 12 when you go through the gate, but the more north you get the more loose the sand- especially when you get to the VA border.

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When you get back on hwy 12 at Corolla after coming off the beach where do you air your tires back up? Or do I need to take a compressor?
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Old 04-26-2012, 01:10 PM   #23
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didnt read the whole thread but just to clarify, you dont need a permit to drive in carolla. its not part of the hatteras national seashore.
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Old 04-26-2012, 03:49 PM   #24
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didnt read the whole thread but just to clarify, you dont need a permit to drive in carolla. its not part of the hatteras national seashore.
Yeah I called about that because the OBX websites are confusing on the ORV use issues. Hatteras makes it very confusing with all the closures and short segments open to ORV.

I just haven't previously driven on sand and while I know that it's packed down near the entrance, from watching a couple videos of the streets around some of the rental properties further north it looks pretty soft and loose so I think airing down would be a good idea.
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Old 05-04-2012, 12:16 PM   #25
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Yeah I called about that because the OBX websites are confusing on the ORV use issues. Hatteras makes it very confusing with all the closures and short segments open to ORV.

I just haven't previously driven on sand and while I know that it's packed down near the entrance, from watching a couple videos of the streets around some of the rental properties further north it looks pretty soft and loose so I think airing down would be a good idea.
Yeah it's a good idea, i dropped down to 12 last time i went, there's fill stations around the area too so no reason not to.
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Old 05-11-2012, 03:20 PM   #26
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I go down every year, in carova you can drive all the way up to the va border. I beleive the jeep tours own some of the trails that do go through the dunes as propeitary property or something stupid like that so not sure which ones you can actually take. You can't go near horses and the speed limit is like 35 or something but thats un realistic because some of it is rutted out and near people its 15mph.
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Old 05-11-2012, 03:27 PM   #27
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def air down too its soft you can't always travel the shore line
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Old 05-15-2012, 07:07 AM   #28
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Headed out to OBX at the end of May in a totally stock 04 TJ. Do you guys have any pointers for me. I wanna do some beach driving, and I'll air down but it limits my already low clearance.
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Old 05-15-2012, 08:11 AM   #29
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I'd Like To Add Something Here

The last time I was at or even near the Outer Banks.. I was required to pay a fee of $100.00 at one of the ranger's stations.. This fee and registration covers a years worth of being allowed to drive on the beach.

Granted, We drove from maryland to the outer banks, So if your going down there just for a weekend.. as we did.. the fee was a bit steep..

Here is a .PDF associated with the Outer banks and their many access points:

http://www.nps.gov/caha/planyourvisi...20Brochure.pdf

Also.. I was prepared.. typically there are a very long lines (waiting to use the air hose) at the service stations along the coast line.. Having an on board compressor really made a difference for us..
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Old 05-15-2012, 10:55 AM   #30
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man you gotta go to north shores, carolla and carova, its free and its about 20 miles of beach.

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