Cape Hatteras Light, NC


Cape Hatteras Light

Outer Banks, NC


Built in 1870, this magnificent treasure stands 191 feet tall, shows a white flash every 7.5 seconds and is visible for twenty-four nautical miles.  The original light was built in 1803 and was only 95 feet high.

For good reason, Cape Hatteras ranks among the top places in the world that strike fear into a sailor’s heart by the mere mention of her name! 

A long time ago, before satellite weather reports, two friends of mine, Duke Stock and Ross Smith were moving Burl Ives’ Boat from Connecticut to Florida for the winter season.  The boat, a beautiful, ninety foot yawl promised a pleasant cruise from north to south.

But, they ran into a nor’easter just off Hatteras and were almost killed trying to stay away from Diamond Shoals.  They survived to tell how they lost control of the boat and were driven hard aground, broaching and snapping the masts.  In the water, with debris raining down on them, they thought they were finished.  Fortunately, some townspeople went into the surf and brought them to safety.  The boat was a total wreck!

Incredible, this huge structure was moved out of harm’s way in 1999 when it appeared that the ocean was going to claim her!   Somehow they got this monument onto a flat bed with hundreds of rollers and sensors controlled by computers, and then moved it 2900 feet inland.  It advanced so slowly that the eye had trouble seeing the movement. 

In addition to the Hatteras Light, the Outer Banks has other great lighthouses,  and is a must visit for people who connect with these “vanishing castles of America”. 

Alfred LaBanca


Darien, CT


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