Ocean Isle Beach has a well-known reputation for having some of the most beautiful and pristine beaches on the East Coast. Our five miles of oceanfront has for generations been one of the best family-friendly destinations in North Carolina. Many families come year after year to take advantage of our great location, adventures, and, of course, most of all our beaches. Protecting our beaches is the responsibility of all who love Ocean Isle Beach. This week we discover all the ways the beaches and dunes of Ocean Isle Beach play a special part in our community.
Beautiful Ocean Isle Beach
Now we just said that Ocean Isle Beach is one of the most beautiful family destinations on the North Carolina coast. We aren’t trying to brag, but we aren’t the only ones who think this. Even the folks at Southern Living agree that there is something special about Ocean Isle Beach. Don’t believe us? Take a look at this short video before we talk about our beautiful sand dunes.
What dunes do.
While the dunes are beautiful to look at, they actually play a critical role in the health and well being of the beaches that we have all come to love. How do they do this? Without getting too complicated, let’s take a look at why the dunes play such a vital role in the beauty of Ocean Isle Beach.Think of the dune as the watchdogs of the beach.
The main function they play is in protecting the beach from erosion. Mother Nature is a fickle beast and the constant battering of waves, wind, and storms can cause havoc on the beach and adjacent properties. Not only do the dunes help maintain the structure of the beach they also provide the first line of protection for homeowners along the beach. Here are six ways that dunes help protect our beaches.
Six essential functions of the dunes
1) Dunes store sand that help diminish potential shoreline erosion.
2) Dunes absorb the impact of storm surge and high waves.
3) Dunes prevent water from flooding coastal towns.
4) Dunes provide habitat and crucial nesting area for threatened and endangered species.
5) Dunes create a relaxing backdrop to any beach.
6) Dunes buffer the full force of the ocean and protect property.
Note: Ocean Island Beach strictly enforces its dune ordinance. Walking on the dunes can result in a ($100 fine).
Sea Oats, an iconic symbol of the coast.
Sea Oats, an iconic symbol of the coast If you’ve ever taken a picture while on the beach on Ocean Isle Beach, chances are the in the background you’ll see the swaying stalks of sea oats. Sea Oats are not just lovely to look at, they also provide an important part of the beach ecosystem.
Sea oats are more formally known as Uniola paniculataand are amazing little plants. Think about your garden, that dark rich earth loaded with fertilizer, and then think about the beach. Sea oats are amazing in that they love a sandy environment. They even survive the harsh wind and salt spray of the ocean. It is this hardy nature that makes sea oats the perfect guardian of our dunes. Sea oats have extensive root systems that provide structure to the dunes. This is accomplished by preventing wind and water erosion. In addition to protecting the beach, they also provide critical habitat for a variety of coastal animals.
Because of the role they play on keeping the dunes safe, it is important to never pick or cut the sea oats.
Help keep our beaches and dunes pristine
We hope learning about the importance of our dunes, that you too will fall in love with Ocean Isle Beach. We encourage all of our visitors and the local community to help us keep the beaches perfect so we have them for generations to come and enjoy. There are several ways to help do this. Here are several ways you can help keep Ocean Isle Beach beautiful.
Reuse! – Bring reusable drink and food containers instead of plastic bags and water bottles that can blow away in the wind. Plus, leaving behind your reusable bottle means buying another one which can be pricey!
Eat beforehand – Why waste time eating when you can be swimming, playing volleyball, looking for beach glass, or just soaking in the sun. Eat beforehand so that you don’t have to even carry containers and bags.
Make cleaning up a game! – Pack it in, pack it out. Make a game out of cleaning up the trash around you with kids. See how much they can pick up, or how fast. Whatever you bring in, make sure to bring it back out and fast! Bring your own trash bag – If you’re planning on bringing a lot of food in, just bring your own trash bag as well. This way, you don’t have to worry about walking trash to the bin, or piling it all back into your beach bag.
Trash walk – Bring your dog, your partner, or your friends and walk the beach with a trash bag! Enjoy a walk on the beach and pick up any loose trash you see on the shore. There is no extra effort and no slight to your enjoying the beach. And you get a little cardio in! Picking up litter can get you a lot of squats.
Sunset cleaning – Maybe hit the sunset a bit early and help clean up the beach at the end of a busy day. Coming at this time helps get the beach cleaner that day, without the trash blowing around at night if it gets windy or stormy.
Help spread the word! – Make this a habit that you and your family can enjoy and one that you can tell your friends. Post it on social media, invite people to go with you, and encourage others on the beach to take their trash out if you see them leaving.
Are you ready to plan your Ocean Isle Beach vacation? Now is the best time of the year to plan your 2019 summer vacation. When you book early, you have the best choice of vacation homes and plenty of time to plan your activities. The easiest way to book your vacation is by booking directly with one of our friendly reservationists. Give us a call today at 800-727-9222 or click the button below to see our entire inventory of Ocean Isle Beach vacation homes.
What is your favorite memory of Ocean Isle Beach? Let us know in the comments below.