Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Welcoming Party

For the past three years we have set aside time to venture down to Portsmouth Island. Just south of Ocracoke, NC, PI was once occupied by a small fishing village.  The village still stands, however the people have since moved off the island.   We found PI in a small Outside magazine article a few years ago- the rest is history! Each trip has been marked by 'events' out of our control. The first trip- the mildest- was in June of '09. It was a great intro, and lured us into planning another.
I could do this every summer...
April of 2010 brought WIND. Sandblasting wind that shot down the beach- making fishing terrible, and ushering us into the safety of the dunes to retreat from it's fury. 

Our desires of the PI experience were not met, so we again traveled back in 2010, this time bridging the last week of June, into the first week of July.  The wind was much calmer, but still present.  Thunderstorms rained down destroying  our metal awning frame (basically palmed it flat onto the beach.)  We retreated to the dunes...again.  After a few enjoyable days of sunshine, we were set to head home. We packed up a majority of our campsite- leaving only the tent and some clothes to take care of in the morning.  Thunderstorms again came through this time raging against our tent (a glorious North Face Tent, purchased as a Christmas Gift for hubby, on our 1st Christmas!)  Poles broke, rain fly ripped, tent failed. We slept in the truck. 
The Thunderstorm that ate our campsite

With high spirits we set out for our 4th adventure on PI, this time with 2 pups! We caught the ferry, drove up the beach to find our spot and set up camp, this time close to the dunes, so we wouldn't have to move it!

Wednesday and Thursday were warm, breezy, beautiful beach days.  Friday, Saturday, and Sunday were hot, dead calm days. Have you ever seen the Atlantic Ocean look like a lake?! It was scary calm. There were NO waves, NO wind and NO relief from these guys. 


Black flies, unassuming as they appear, are the ninjas of the bug kingdom. Swarming in from the dunes (because there was no wind to keep them at bay), they attacked both hubs and myself- as well as the dogs.  We quickly made the decision to move our campsite closer to the water- to no avail, they just followed us. They laughed at our bug spray- 100% deet- and kept on mounting attacks at our ankles.  The wind picked up, the bugs went back to the dunes, and we were finally safe from their onslaught.  Lesson #1- you will ALWAYS move your campsite on PI, so keep it clean.

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