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Old 07-07-2013, 08:17 PM   #1
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ORV OBX

Thought I would pass along a few pics of our summer vacation in the Outer Banks last week.

While we had a house down in Nags Head, all but a fairly short stretch of beach was closed to ORV at the time around the Oregon Inlet ("we are from the government and we are here to help you").

Did manage to head up to Corolla a couple of days and hit Carova Beach. Carova has roughly a dozen miles of beach that is open to ORV 24/7 with no permits and runs all the way up to the VA border.

The sand conditions were quite varied, some fairly smooth and hard packed, but mostly very, very soft and easily rutted sand. The soft stuff can be a real eye opener for those 4x4s and especially all wheel drives that choose to not air down. An all wheel drive with limited clearance and full pressure tires would be lucky to make it much past the entrance ramp!

The first day I aired down (Nitto Terra Grapplers) to 12 psi, ran in 4 hi with ATRAC on, I do not think I could have got stuck if I had tried, very sure footed, very pleased.

The second trip down I decided to try 20 psi (what the signs recommend), at the higher pressure I could tell a real difference. While I had no problems and never really felt I was going to, still you could tell you did not have the margin of error you did at 12 psi.

Not too many vehicles out either day and lots of open beach to yourself, really was nice late of the afternoon/evening. This was a great time for the kids to fly kites till dark with not another soul around. The wild Mustangs also seem to come down to the surf mostly later in the day.

There is also a neighborhood behind the dunes that stretches most of the way up to the VA border. Some beautiful homes that range from very nice to some giants that have 20+ bedrooms. This area is isolated and cut off from all roads of any type, the only access other than boat to it is by driving down the beach for about a mile or so from where the roads ends.
Once in the neighborhood it is laid out with street names, but all of 'roads' are just sand trails behind the dunes, lots of great places to explore here as well.

Here a few pics of my Taco from the trip.









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Old 07-07-2013, 11:22 PM   #2
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A few more







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Old 07-08-2013, 06:57 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1911 View Post
Thought I would pass along a few pics of our summer vacation in the Outer Banks last week.

While we had a house down in Nags Head, all but a fairly short stretch of beach was closed to ORV at the time around the Oregon Inlet ("we are from the government and we are here to help you").

Did manage to head up to Corolla a couple of days and hit Carova Beach. Carova has roughly a dozen miles of beach that is open to ORV 24/7 with no permits and runs all the way up to the VA border.

The sand conditions were quite varied, some fairly smooth and hard packed, but mostly very, very soft and easily rutted sand. The soft stuff can be a real eye opener for those 4x4s and especially all wheel drives that choose to not air down. An all wheel drive with limited clearance and full pressure tires would be lucky to make it much past the entrance ramp!

The first day I aired down (Nitto Terra Grapplers) to 12 psi, ran in 4 hi with ATRAC on, I do not think I could have got stuck if I had tried, very sure footed, very pleased.

The second trip down I decided to try 20 psi (what the signs recommend), at the higher pressure I could tell a real difference. While I had no problems and never really felt I was going to, still you could tell you did not have the margin of error you did at 12 psi.

Not too many vehicles out either day and lots of open beach to yourself, really was nice late of the afternoon/evening. This was a great time for the kids to fly kites till dark with not another soul around. The wild Mustangs also seem to come down to the surf mostly later in the day.

There is also a neighborhood behind the dunes that stretches most of the way up to the VA border. Some beautiful homes that range from very nice to some giants that have 20+ bedrooms. This area is isolated and cut off from all roads of any type, the only access other than boat to it is by driving down the beach for about a mile or so from where the roads ends.
Once in the neighborhood it is laid out with street names, but all of 'roads' are just sand trails behind the dunes, lots of great places to explore here as well.

Here a few pics of my Taco from the trip.









nice pictures
We very often stay in Carova (more peaceful than most of OBX) Kids love it, i love driving on the beach although by the end of the week I try to limit trips.
Some of the sand there can swallow half of the truck very quickly. I had seen everybody get stuck including Police. Most trouble spots are around ramps. If it is used very often it will have sugar type sand.
AWD is pretty much useless there with exception of AWD LC.
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Old 07-08-2013, 09:50 AM   #4
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Looks like you had a great time in OBX. I consider Corolla to be tame compared to Oregon Inlet beach in terms of deep sand & getting "bogged" down as I've seen tons of folks getting stuck just trying to make it to the dunes/beach. You definitely need to air down in Oregon Inlet beach.

Everytime I goto Corolla I never need to airdown and don't believe it is a must for most stock 4x4s. As for AWD vehicles, those people crack me up when I drive by and see them trying to dig out or end up having to get the local tow truck to yank them out..

I've been going to OBX since I was a kid and definitely a must go to spot if you have a 4x4 and/or can't stand the crowds at OC, VA beach, AC, and just want some peace n quiet vacationing. The locals are some of the friendliest people I've run into while traveling.
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Old 07-10-2013, 11:51 PM   #5
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Any 2wd friendly areas at OBX? Always wanted to go there. Thinking possibly next vacation.
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Old 07-11-2013, 08:55 AM   #6
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Been going to OBX since I was a kid. Heading back the second week of August.

Its a shame what they have done to restrict access, and the ORV permit is a joke. That being said, we always stay in Frisco where there is still a little beach access. Though they closed "the point" which was pretty much the greatest fishing spot in OBX.

This is from last summer. We do the beach in style (mind my brothers heap).
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Old 07-11-2013, 11:17 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Khaos View Post
Any 2wd friendly areas at OBX? Always wanted to go there. Thinking possibly next vacation.

There are certainly sections of the beach (at least at Carova) that a two wheel drive might do okay in, the problem is getting to it!

Way to many areas you would have to go through that a two wheel drive would get stuck in. To be honest, the first couple of hundred yards of where the ramp leads from the road to the beach would probably be a real issue, especially if you stopped for any reason.
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Old 07-13-2013, 04:04 PM   #8
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looks great, would love to go down to OBX. here in Jersey i have never gotten stuck and not even close. the whole trick is to air down and keep the wheel spin to a minimum.

i personally would not take a 2wd in the sand, too risky. you need the 4wd to keep you on top of the sand.
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Old 07-13-2013, 04:29 PM   #9
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Great pics.

I used to drive my xTerra on the same stretch of beach 8-9 years ago and my brothers wrangler before that. If we go down next year I'll def be taking the Tacoma. Some of the houses on the OVR beaches you can rent which would be sweet.

Like others have said I'd never drive a 2wd on the beach. Sand is like nothing you've driven on before. I wouldn't even take my wife's Forester on it. The packed stuff and near the surf is fine. The loose stuff is what gets you. Never got stuck in the X or Jeep. Needed 4lo though.

Happy trails.
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Old 07-13-2013, 04:41 PM   #10
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Nice! I stay in Nags Head most of the time but we stayed in Corolla 2 years ago and ran the ORV beach I love how quiet it is up there.

I was under the impression that you needed a permit for the beach driving now, am I wrong?
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Old 07-13-2013, 08:02 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StickShifty View Post
looks great, would love to go down to OBX. here in Jersey i have never gotten stuck and not even close. the whole trick is to air down and keep the wheel spin to a minimum.

i personally would not take a 2wd in the sand, too risky. you need the 4wd to keep you on top of the sand.
Been driving 2wd Toyotas in the sand since I was 14. Airing down makes all the difference, that and knowing what sand you cannot do.
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Old 07-13-2013, 08:16 PM   #13
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Thanks for the nice comments on the pics.


Quote:
Originally Posted by sander1036 View Post
Nice! I stay in Nags Head most of the time but we stayed in Corolla 2 years ago and ran the ORV beach I love how quiet it is up there.


I was under the impression that you needed a permit for the beach driving now, am I wrong?
Permit is required on all of the beaches open to ORV that are part of the National Seashore or Parks system (Oregon Inlet and south), all the beaches north of say Nags Head are state controlled and do not require permit.
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Old 07-13-2013, 08:42 PM   #14
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Sand is like snow, there are all kinds, the stuff down there, especially at Oregon Inlet is powdery like sugar.

Here is but a taste...

http://vimeo.com/29529429
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Old 07-15-2013, 10:00 AM   #16
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I think bottom line is that if you own Honda, or 2wd vehicle none of those places are for you.
Entrance to the beach on Rt12 is the awesome spot. One time I took my beach chair and cold one and just seat there watch people get stuck. Somebody should sell tickets just for that.
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Old 07-19-2013, 08:27 AM   #17
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Quote:
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I think bottom line is that if you own Honda, or 2wd vehicle none of those places are for you.
Entrance to the beach on Rt12 is the awesome spot. One time I took my beach chair and cold one and just seat there watch people get stuck. Somebody should sell tickets just for that.
Same goes for highlanders....

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Old 01-13-2014, 09:50 PM   #18
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Daytona Beach This Time

I resurrected this old thread on the Outer Banks to compare it with the sand we encountered at Daytona Beach.

This past summer we vacationed at OBX and did some driving on the beach, as described in the post above, even with my Tacoma it would have been dicey to not air down your tires. If not real careful it would have been so easy to get stuck at full pressure. Once you got down to 18 PSI or better yet 12, it was no real problem, however I would never have dreamed of trying in my wife's AWD Highlander.

Over the Christmas Holidays we took the kids down to Disney World, on the way I timed it so we got to Daytona just as the sun was coming up. Christmas Eve day we drove up and down Daytona Beach before heading on to Orlando, had the beach to ourselves!

Hard to believe the difference in the sand, much more like a hard packed dirt road, do not think you could have gotten stuck in her Highlander if you were trying. Would not think twice about taking her VW Beetle on it as well.





One funny side note, about the only thing besides us on the beach early that morning was a police/lifeguard truck. Passed him going up and waved, got no response. On the way back I figured out why, he was holding a handheld radar gun and trying to hid it on the window sill behind his side mirror, guess they take that 10 MPH speed limit seriously! Looking at the pic of the beach above, would seem a bit anal that morning!
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Old 01-13-2014, 10:01 PM   #19
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Love the obx went a couple times when I was at school in Elizabeth city.


The wife driving

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Old 01-22-2014, 02:02 PM   #20
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These pics were from this past thanksgiving, Duck has basically been my second home my entire life during the off season.
Carova





Pea Island









You can see the difference in how soft the sand if from northern obx to south
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