Relentless March Storm Pounds the Outer Banks (Photo Gallery)

The people that live on the Outer Banks are not strangers to extreme weather. In fact, they are in some regards immune to it. Getting a large Nor’Easter in March is almost expected as we typically see very large systems/swells on probably one of the coldest months out of the entire year. The perfect example would be the famous Ash Wednesday storm in 1962.

This latest storm is now going on day 6 with (12) high tide periods. The waves have reached over 23 feet during the peak of the swell and have lingered around due to the low pressure system stalling out in the Atlantic. That is the perfect recipe for destruction on the Outer Banks. Highway 12 has been compromised in several sections with heavy sand burying the road to Hatteras. Mirlo Beach just North of Rodanthe was just repaired from super storm Sandy and wasn’t quite ready for another mega storm. Kitty Hawk got their usual coastal flooding as the dunes continue to slip away into the ocean. Ocracoke was reporting some road problems and Buxton definitely took on lots of water and structural damage. Much of the roadways were impassable at high tides due to ocean over wash and even the fairy systems shut down operation during parts of the storm.

The photos below were taken from a handful of talented local photographers who have been documenting this storm from day 1. Their photographs have been extremely helpful to others who need to know about road conditions, property damage and tidal/sound side flooding.

Just another day in paradise.

Ben Gallop_Old Mans Harbor Bridge

Photographer Ben Gallop took this shot of Old Mans Harbor Bridge where he reported 6-8′ waves (in the sound).

Jeff Dawson_Cape Hatteras Hotel

The North side of Buxton was hit hard with ocean over wash which was very unfortunate for the Cape Hatteras Motel. Photographer: Jeff Dawson

Lemmon_Avon Backwash

Nature doing what it does best. (showing beauty through power). Photographer: Lemmon

Lemmon_Avon Pier 3:11:13

Shot from the North of Avon Pier, all you can see is washing machine-like conditions all the way up to the dune line. Photographer: Lemmon

Lemmon_Avon Pier Damage_3:10

Another shot of the end of Avon Pier as it retreats into the ocean. Simply not a match for Mother Nature. Photographer: Lemmon


At the beginning of the storm, reports of Soundside flooding occurred. Dare County schools were even let out early due to high winds and sound side flooding. Luckily for Westside residents, the water didn’t rise as high as Hurricane Irene but was enough for Billy’s Seafood on Colington Rd. to put up a “NO WAKE ZONE” sign in their parking lot. This shot was taken by Brent Nultemeier while heading West on Colington Rd.

OII_Kitty Hawk 1

When coastal flooding occurs, Kitty Hawk usually gets it pretty bad since there’s barely any dunes left to protect it. Photo Source: Oregon Inlet Idiots’s (OII) Facebook Page

OII_Kitty Hawk_1

Another view in Kitty Hawk. Photo Source: Oregon Inlet Idiots’s (OII) Facebook Page


Last house standing at Lillian Street. It won’t be long before this one takes a dip. Photo Source: Oregon Inlet Idiots’s (OII) Facebook Page

Pullen_Buxton 1

Local Photographer Daniel Pullen was on the scene daily – documenting the damage on Hatteras Island. As beautiful as this image is, it’s a real shame for the residents in Buxton to have to go through this…yet again.

Pullen_Buxton 2

Cape Hatteras Motel was definitely getting a beating as the ocean found it’s way under the building and onto highway 12. Photo: Daniel Pullen

Pullen_Mirlo 1

Mirlo Beach is in serious trouble. There’s not enough sandbags to fix this problem. The people on Hatteras Island NEED a better solution. Photo: Daniel Pullen

Pullen_Mirlo Monday am

Another photograph from Daniel Pullen showing just how buried highway 12 was near S-Turns.

Pullen_Mirlo under sand

Mirlo Beach / S-Turns / Rodanthe……buried. Photo: Daniel Pullen

Pullen_OBX Motel

Sea foam parking lot at the Outer Banks Motel located in Buxton. Photo: Daniel Pullen



If you like this, you may also like: