Friday, June 03, 2011

First Ferry Crossing

Leaving Atlantic beach, we headed north to Cedar Island. We had a motel reservation at the Driftwood Motel and on the ferry for the next day.

When we arrived around noon at Cedar Island, we found that our room was not ready and the restaurant would not be open until the weekend.

The motel is located directly beside the ferry to Ocracoke. Judy and I made the decision to try to get the ferry early to Ocracoke. We canceled our reservations at the Driftwood.

The lovely ladies below rescheduled us and we hopped on the next ferry which left about 30 minutes later.

Interestingly the North Carolina Department of Transportation has seven routes and 24 ferries that serve Eastern North Carolina, from Knotts Island which straddles the Virginia state line, to Fort Fisher and the Southern beaches of the Cape Fear region. Operating 365 days a year, the 400+ hardworking employees make sure that rain or shine, the ferries get to their destinations, whether they are a quick 20 minute jaunt away or a 2.5-hour stretch across the Pamlico Sound. Most ferries are free. The charge on the Cedar Island to Ocracoke ferry was fifteen dollars for our van.

Cedar Island- Ocracoke: In 1961, service was begun between Cedar Island and Ocracoke to provide a connection for NC 12 to the mainland, and allow better travel to and from the outer banks across the Pamlico Sound. The trip took us approximately two and one-half hours.

The large ferry boats are built to accommodate a number of vehicles, and provide many creature comforts for the trip, including a passenger lounge with seating, observation decks, and vending machines.

We had not had lunch so the good wife prepared our gourmet meal in the passenger lounge.

We met this couple who were crossing on their tandem bicycle. They were from California and last year biked from their home in California to Maine. They were presently on a trip that started in Florida and were again heading to Maine. We could never do it! (Physically- no - but even more.. how could we bike with four suitcases, picnic basket, etc.?)

Once again we had great weather for the crossing.

The laughing gulls are our constant companions on the ocean.

The ferries have an observation deck on top. We were about the only ones who were enjoying this section of the ferry.

I had called from the ferry on the cell phone to see if we could get into our room at the Anchorage Inn a day early. No problem. We arrived on Ocracoke Island in mid-afternoon.

Tomorrow- The Ocracoke Experience.


Post a Comment

<< Home