Monday, January 11, 2010

Ticky And Rosie Explore The November 2009 Outer Banks Storm Damage In South Nags Head.

On Sunday, The Hawthornes had the pleasure of Ticky's company. After lunch, Ticky and I ventured out to South Nags Head. We wanted to see for ourselves the damage done during the 5-day November storm. Here's Ticky's account of our little folly ... ehh ... foray. Wow. I'd gone down there with Mr. Hawthorne during the aftermath. Mr. H. is very picky and wouldn't even get out of the truck, but I shot pics. In case you're interested, here's Avalon Pier during the storm. And here. And here. And here. And here's my yard. I wished the ol' man and I could have bolstered through it. I so wanted to get a video of a house exiting into the ocean. Now, Ticky is a real trooper. She gets out there. The temperature on her car was 32 degrees. The wind was blowing from the North at 20-25 mph. What wind chill, anyone? I'd say MINUS 22 degrees on the beach in South Nags Head. I was expecting icicles from my nostrils. I was uncomfortably cold. I was feeling my fingers go numb and start hurting (YES, they go numb and hurt at the same time, and I FEEL it.) because of Raynaud's Syndrome. Beach accesses in South Nags Head are still impassable to beachgoers. There is no safe way to get to the beach in the southern residential portion of the town and repairs are estimated at $140,000. 562 TONS of debris from the west side of the south Nags Head dune line have been hauled off to the county landfill. Access to some of the homes is also limited due to the collapse of Sea Gull Drive. Replacement cost for the road is estimated at $96,000, with almost 2/3 of the cost for fill. The next phase of the clean-up project will be removing debris from the beaches. A recent survey indicated that the drive was only 1.8 feet above sea level, with eight houses now located east of the mean high tide line. The most damage was incurred by Sea Gull Drive, with a loss of 74 feet of beach. As a whole, the town averaged a loss of 20 feet of beach. Before the storm, four houses had been ordered to be removed. Now, almost 30 homes have been ordered to be torn down because they stand on public beaches. Just ... enjoy .... the destruction.
I love our shadows.
Do you notice anything about some of the pilings below?
Look closely.
The three pilings from lower left to upper right, in the front, are actually dangling, blowing in the wind. There is no piling to ground contact.
Would you pay good money to put a house out HERE?
Stairway to Nowhere.
Lots of exposed septic tanks.
Ticky, braving the winds.
Sand bags. Beached whales.
Sand blowing.
I loved this little shell.
Why would anyone build this close to the ocean? Why would the city of Nags Head allow it?
Septic tanks everywhere.
This storm happened in November. And it still looks like this even after 562 tons of debris has been removed. This house is considerably set back from the ocean. Lost its driveway.
Another west side house. With debris all around. No driveway.
Poor, cold Ticky walking back against the winds.
How much does a sand bag cost? Where does one buy a sand bag? What's a sandbag supposed to do? Does one have to fill their own sand bag? Where does one place one's sand bags? So many questions. It really doesn't look like all these sand bags did much of anything.
As Ticky said, "If you live next door to a volcano, don't question the lava in your living room." Or something such.
Ticky and I wondered why this part of lower South Nags Head Beach was so blackened.
One of my favorite pictures from today's excursion.
Ticky bagged a lovely 12-pointer. She's stuffing it in the back of her car. I did absolutely nothing to help. I was freezing. Oh, before I forget, you remember the house, Serendipity, at the northern end of Rodanthe, featured in the movie Nights in Rodanthe. I did a drive-by shooting of it back in October. And here's a video from August 2009. The cottage has been increasingly engulfed by ocean waters and its driveway serves as a funnel for those waters to hit and sometimes close NC 12. In December 2009, Dare County declared the cottage a public nuisane and issued a notice to the owners to move the cottage or appeal. Well, Serendipity has been rescued from destruction by both the ocean and bureaucracy. A couple from Newton, NC, has purchased the famed cottage and is planning on relocating it to a new lot on Beacon Road, about a mile south from its current location. The new owners plan on fixing up the cottage as the movie's Inn at Rodanthe. NCDOT is expected to issue its move permit this week.
Stay tuned for more pictures from Ticky's and Rosie's Great Adventure.


Anonymous said...

It's so sad to see all that destruction, feel sorry for the owners, and angry with insurance companies that won't pay a claim until the house falls into ocean. They should also have to pay for the cleanup if they won't pay to prevent the environmental damage caused when the condemned house finally goes.

Kathy said...

I came home & took a hot shower and was still cold.

Rosie Hawthorne said...

Xmaskatie, I hate insurance companies.
The only thing they cover is their own ass.

Rosie Hawthorne said...

And Kathy/Ticky, I'm still cold now.

Marilyn said...

The sea giveth, the sea taketh away.

And yet we humans still hold a fascination with the tempest.

Anonymous said...

South Nags Head has been a favorite vacation spot over the years and I recognize many of those houses....they weren't always that close to the water. A friend owned a house on the west side of the beach road and always said if he waited long enough it would be ocean front property.

Rosie Hawthorne said...

Sadly, this will no doubt happen to your friend's property.
We all take risks when we live on the coast. Just like everybody else.

Heartland - Tornadoes
West Coast - Earthquakes
South/East Coast - Hurricanes