Saturday, July 16, 2011

The Outer Banks

My oh my! The last 81 miles of the trip! I'll do my very best to keep y'all posted in these last few days, however being that I'm out on the islands, the internet connection is dwindling. I am currently enjoying a lovely worn-out red suede couch at the Ocracoke Coffee Company, making good use of their free wifi, strong coffee and superb muffins. Oh, I do believe drinking coffee and eating pastries in quaint coffeeshops is my next favorite thing to hiking.

After leaving Davis Provisions, I entered the community of Stacy. Here I was invited into the home of Diane Styron - a most lovely trail angel. Here I met her husband, Steve as well as dog Jacob. I enjoyed homemade pizza and cucumbers in vinegar, and slept safe and sound from bugs and humidity on their couch. Thank you Diane and Steve!

Welcome to Stacy: population 205
Me and Diane - she's glowing like the trail angel she is!
Leaving Stacy, I had a 6 mile walk down a long flat road taking me directly through the center of expansive marshland, deep creeks running parallel on either side. Few cars passed, and with a brisk wind, I crossed several tall and long bridges taking in the surrounding views, marveling at the vastness of it all. Pennywort, Bur Marigold, Sneezeweed, and pink Bindweed complemented the green roadside grass and contrasted the forever stretching spread of brown marsh grasses blowing in the breeze.

bridge through marshland
view from bridge
view from the base of a bridge and a good place to take a snack break
helluva long flat road in the middle of marsh
After passing through marsh I entered into the town of Cedar Island. This was a quaint little fishing town and friendly folks yelled from the roadside offering me fish tacos. Fortunately they didn't take it personally when I explained I didn't eat fish. Quite the place in which to not be a fish eater! From here I caught my first glimpses of the ocean and took a 2 1/2hr long ferry 27m to Ocracoke island...

ferry en route to Ocracoke!
While aboard I chatted with lots of friendly folks, one of them Ralph who is busy traveling the world with his wife, and Tom a school teacher from Texas visiting friends on the island. It was a pleasure to meet y'all!

Once setting foot on this beautiful island, I was...overwhelmed. People everywhere, shop upon shop filled with all kinds of trinkets and food fare, as well as B&B's and motels with cars pulling in and out- all absolutely adorable- but a lot of stimulus. I made my way down the narrow winding roads, passing a multitude of smiling bicyclists, long boarders and folks on foot. I needed something to ground myself, something familiar and comforting...I headed for the ice cream shop...

this lovely lady saved the day with the most amazing (mind you $7) sundae, complete with homemade hot fudge, real whipped cream, and a cherry. Ice cream is an edible/medicinal right?
I snagged myself a campsite at the Beach Comber Campground and spent the rest of the afternoon and evening acquainting myself with the island. Today I will enjoy the villiage, get in some good swimming and hike on.

I project I'll be finishing on Wednesday as long as the beach winds, tides, and the tootsies agree with me! Nag's Head, here I come!

1 comment:

  1. Go, Heather, go! I recognize that long flat road to the Cedar Island Ferry quite well~ (though we usually take another route) Yes, QUITE a place to be in to not eat seafood, for sure. When I spent the summer on Ocracoke I was still a vegetarian and didn't partake in any fish eating, but now when we go back the fresh seafood is one of my biggest highlights ;-) Can't wait to see you soon and hear all about your adventures!