Maggie and I asked Mom & Dad to join us on a long weekend to the Outer Banks, North Carolina. We headed south towards approaching tropical storm Andrea. The trailers were parked at the Rodanthe KOA, and although the storm battered us with wind and rain we survived.

Saturday morning we arrived at the Wright Brothers Memorial. Mom, Maggie and I walked the grounds while Dad found a comfortable chair. They had markers on the runway showing the distances for the first three flights. At the opposite end atop a hill they constructed a memorial for Orville and Wilbur. We climbed up for a spectacular view of the area.

Rick & Maggie

We later found out from Dad that he was using his binoculars to follow us on our journey.

From our lofty perch we could see the visitor's center, the original runway, a new paved runway for light planes, and a sculpture depicting the first flight. Then we noticed that you could drive your car on access roads to all the visitor's sights.

Rick and Doris

After returning to Dad we stopped in the Pavilion that contained memorabilia from the brothers and their time on the dunes. A souvenir shop was also included where we supported the local economy. They had some excellent T-shirts.

Everyone piled into the car for a ride over to the sculpture depicting the moment of lift-off. Crafted in stainless steel the Wright Flyer is shown with Orville at the controls lifting off it's guide rails as a group of spectators, including a photographer, cheer.

If you look carefully at the image from behind the photographer you will see a modern airplane that just took off from the airfield. Check the clouds over the propellers.

photographer

The ride back to the campsite followed a road along the coast. Signs on many of the dunes indicated a turtle hatching area, with restricted access.

Maggie asked me to photograph one of the bridges on the route because she thought it resembled a "patch-work quilt" quality. I parked the car on the side of the road, and when finished I joined everyone walking on the beach. Mom and Maggie were collecting seashells in the surf. When we arrived at the KOA, we switched to bathing suits so we could soak up some coolness in the huge swimming pool. On one side it had long slope leading into the water like the shore. This led to some Norwegian pool entry techniques by the Pool Flounders.

On Sunday we approached the Bodie Island lighthouse at Nags Head for a tour. The island is named for the Body family that first purchased the land, not because of all the bodies that floated ashore from the numerous shipwrecks in the area.

We signed up to climb to the top, 165 feet and 219 steps up (438 steps up & down!). Mom, Maggie and I joined another 19 people at the base where we were briefed by the park ranger. We began our climb, thankful for the four rest stops on the way. Dad maintained a watchful eye from sea level.

The walkabout at the top gave us a 360 degree view of the area, from the Atlantic to the bay. The weather was a little hazy, and inside the stairs the temperature was 84 degrees with 80 percent humidity. We must have sweated off a few pounds by the time we returned to the base. On our next trip we'd like to visit the Hatteras light house, located south of the campsite.

A little shopping finished the day and we walked the beach before retiring. Monday morning we headed home and bid farewell to the Outer Banks, hoping to return soon.

wright runway

freighter

horizon

reefs

Brermuda port

Paul and Biscuit

Bermuda houses

three islands

Bodie Island lighthouse

ship wreck

panarama

glass day

fotoace

EMAIL