The weather has has warmed and the rains have stopped
View this email in your browser

Coastal Spring

A Welcome Change

It has been a strange winter on the coast and I will admit to being unusually quiet.  Somehow we seemed to be in suspended animation.  The rains would not stop and the repairs taking place in the wake of Florence seemed to suck the air out of everyone.

We were lucky in Bluewater Cove, our subdivision just a few miles up the White Oak River from Emerald Isle. I think the angle of Raymond's Gut as it enters the White Oak River helps us a little with surging high water. However, we did not have to drive many miles to be reminded of the people who were not so lucky.  Even with what we had seen, it was possible to be shocked.  A fall trip to Costco in Wilmington took us through Pender County, and we saw destruction of a level that we had hardly heard of from our local news. Our road to Wilmington was at times like driving through a tunnel of debris. 

We are thankful to be living in Carteret County where schools were out for just two weeks. In neighboring Onslow County schools were out for two months because of Florence damage.

Much progress has been made since fall. The Emerald Isle Pier opened today.  Tomorrow is the Emerald Isle Saint Patrick's Day festival. The Bradford pear trees sort of bloomed and the willow trees are getting leaves. Many but not all restaurants are back open.  The beaches are being repaired both by nature and man. Emerald Isle even has a new town manager.  As we drove across the bridge tonight, I could still see destruction in damaged trees to the east of the road but I was happy that the Emerald Woods park just to the west had just opened.  The Town seems ready for the first outside festival of the season.

The festival most years coincides with warming weather. This year there is no doubt the season is changing. I was sitting in my office today when it occurred to me that I was having a frog in a pot of rapidly heating water moment. I felt hot to my core and a check revealed that my office temperature had risen to 78F without me noticing.  I quickly turned on the air conditioning for the first time this year. 

My windows were closed because of pollen and winds gusting to 25MPH.  With winds, pollen, and warmth, it must be spring. Yesterday as further proof, I took my fly rod out and practiced casting in our subdivision pond. When fishing fever hits, spring is close even if the fish are not. In our case, the fish are even here. A neighbor has been catching puffers for a week and today he landed an undersized flounder. It will be a little longer before my artificial lures have any success but with the water temperature creeping up to 60F, a kayak trip is possible if the wind will stop blowing for a few hours.

It will not be long before beach pictures like the one in this newsletter are common. That one was taken last year around the end of March.  We can hope for weather that nice by then. We are already flirting with it. However, if you had been on the beach today, your ankles would most likely have lost some skin from air borne sand blowing close to the surface. Wind is part of spring on the coast.

Still the warmth even with the winds is a nice treat because the cold and damp weather has not been gone for long.  It was only ten days ago when we got a dusting of snow. Just a couple days before that we had checked out Third Street Beach. The beach looks fine as you can see.  The dunes have a steeper cut and no longer have a shallow slope.  In some places there is not much sand between the ocean and the homes. The beach will still be recovering this summer, but it looks very usable. Even in early March, we had a great time walking on the beach and gathering a few shells.

The good things since Florence are that much more special just because of how far everyone has come. We have  really enjoyed the Neuse Sport Shop that opened in Cedar Point this fall. They had some wonderful opening and holiday specials. We often just went in to wander among their beautiful Christmas trees. It was a welcome beautiful, shiny store at a time when beautiful, shiny things were in short supply here on the coast.  As result of our trips, I am more than well stocked with fishing gear for the upcoming season. 

We have come a long way from only a couple of restaurants being open when we returned from our Florence evacuation. Now there is no shortage of good food. Riverside Steak and Seafood opened late winter.  The new Moore's Barbecue and Chicken restaurant in Swansboro has been a great place to grab some quick barbeque, chicken, or fried seafood. We have also enjoyed the weeknight pizza specials at Michaelangelos on Emerald Isle and even managed to grab a burger at Highway 55 at Emerald Plantation. Michealangelos in Cape Carteret was the first restaurant open after Florence.  Bogue House in Cedar Point ran some nice specials which drew us back in this winter. We decided their cole slaw is the best in the area. As as special treat, I even got to shuck and eat some wonderful steamed oysters for my birthday in early March at Southern Salt in Morehead City.  They are currently running all you eat local steamed oysters for $19.95 on Wednesday and Friday nights. The oysters are ten dollars more if you have them shuck them.

As the details for the coming beach season get firmed up, I will get more information out. Based on the traffic crossing the bridge tonight, people have found their way back to the Crystal Coast.

If you need more information, check out my Crystal Coast homepage or use this link to a contact form. The new home for my Crystal Coast posts is at this link.

David Sobotta
Copyright © 2019 Crystal Coast Life, All rights reserved.

unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp