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Shipwrecks of the Outer Banks

12 Aug 2021
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There are approximately 3,000 wrecks giving the Outer Banks the reputation of being the “Graveyard of the Atlantic''. You would be surprised how shallow some are and when the ocean is clear, these sites are perfect to explore with your kayak, surfboard or stand up paddle. It’s no secret that there is history on our little island and we wanted to share with you these wrecks that are perfect for exploration! 

 

The USS Huron 

Headed for Havana from New York, on November 24, 1877, the USS Huron, a gunship steamer, ran aground in Nags Head. Located at Bladen Street Beach Access, MP 11.5 just north of the Nags Head Fishing Pier, this historic shipwreck lies 150 yards out and is typically marked by buoys.

 

The USS Huron

The Triangle Wrecks

Located near the Second Street beach access in Kill Devil Hills, MP 7. Two vessels, the Kyzickes and the Carl Gerhard had the misfortune of running aground in the same location about 2 years apart. The Carl Gerhard found themselves closer to shore than they thought and ran into the already sunken Kyzikos, making these wrecks resemble a triangle, hence the name. 

 

Photo Credit: https://theglovetrotters.com/north-carolina/middle-outer-banks/

“The Winks Wreck”

Given its name from the popular Winks Market, this is located near Milepost 2 in Kitty Hawk off Luke street. Sitting in about 20 feet of water and 120 yards off shore, this wreck is sometimes one of the more difficult to find. Timing is key. Make sure the water is clear and the tide is high. The ship has not been confirmed, but it is thought to be the British Steamer The Mountainer. 

 

The Oriental

The Oriental is located about 3 miles south of the new Bonner Bridge over Oregon Inlet across from the Pea Island Visitor Center. Also known as the Boiler Wreck, this steamer ran aground in 1861 and sits 150 yards out in about 20 feet of water, depending on the tide. The closest beach access is across the street from the visitors center. This is a popular spot among fishermen to drop a line, so be sure to use a diver down buoy. 

 

Photo Credit: http://northcarolinashipwrecks.blogspot.com/2012/04/steamer-oriental-may...

Ocean Pursuit

Ocean Pursuit is the newest ship wreck on the Outer Banks running aground in 2020 on the shoreline of Coquina Beach, just south of the Cape Hatteras National Shoreline. No water equipment is needed as it sits directly on the beach. Snap a photo, but it is asked that no one boards the ship for safety concerns. 

Photo Credit: Dana Breashears

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