Off Season Surf on the Outer Banks
Surfing in North Carolina
The surf in North Carolina is some of the best and least crowded on the entire East Coast of the United States. If you are looking to paddle out on the barrier islands of the Outer Banks in the fall, spring or winter, its very likely you will score high quality surf with just you and your friends. And with the seasonal weather changes comes larger swells and drastic fluctuations in water temperature. Unfortunately in the Outer Banks, we have some of the largest fluctuations of water temperature of anywhere in the world. It can be 80 degrees in the summer and 36 degrees in the winter. As such, if you are going to score waves year round you have to have the right wetsuits. From board shorts and bikinis to 4/3 wetsuits with hoods, booties and gloves, we have your back! Plus we deliver the equipment to your door from Corolla to Hatteras year round! At Kitty Hawk Kayak & Surf School, we want you to shred when its pumping, and we offer surf lessons and surf equipment rentals year round to help you maximize your surf time while in North Carolina.
New for our 2017 season, we are offering a larger variety of surfboard rentals to help you surf as much as possible while in North Carolina. From high quality soft top beginner surf boards to high performance fiberglass step up sticks for the big days, we have you covered. Check out the surfboard rental options for 2017 or come see us in the fall and scoop up some used boards for cheap:
- 6’0 Fiberglass Fish Boards: These surfboards are better for small to medium sized surf typically found in the summer. These boards generate lots of speed, are easy to paddle and allow you to carve throwback 1970s style carves and turns. Check one out if you are ready to get off a beginner board and the waves are smaller.
- 7’6 Fiberglass Fun Shapes: These boards are great if the surf is smaller, and you are ready to try out a
- 9’0 Fiberglass Longboards: We have some killer Donald Takiyama nose-rider inspired longboards for rent for 2017. These logs will help you dominate the knee high glassy conditions typical in the summer months of June, July & August. They have a nice, scooped out nose for nose riding and hanging ten.
- Standard Short Boards: If the surf is pumping and you don’t have your stick, we got you covered. We have helped many a traveling surfer who happened to be on the Outer Banks of North Carolina without a board get out in the surf when its pumping. Swing on by our shop at Kitty Hawk and pick out the perfect shortboard for the conditions whatever time of year it is.
- Soft Top Beginner Boards: We also have a tremendous variety of beginner soft top boards for all ages from 6 feet to 9 feet. We have been teaching people to surf on the Outer Banks since 2005, and our quiver of boards is DEEP. Let us deliver your shred sleds to your house, or swing by our shop in Kitty Hawk to pick out the best board for your session.
We are so fortunate to live and shred on the Outer Banks, but DANG does the water get cold. No worries though, as we have wetsuits, booties and gloves no matter what the season.
- Spring Suit Wetsuits: Sometimes the water has just enough nip in it to make you want a thin layer of neoprene to shred all day. We have a huge variety of spring suites for kids and adults to maximize water time while surfing in North Carolina. These suites are short sleeves and provide just enough warmth to shred all day or for the dawn patrol sessions. These suits are typically needed in the summer and fall.
- 3/2 Full Suites: After about October 15th, its time to start wearing a 3/2.
- 4/3 Full Suits: After about Thanksgiving in North Carolina, its time to hang up the 3/2 and put on the thicker millimeter rubber wetsuits. This is also when the surf really starts to turn on!! Be ready to score pumping surf on the Outer Banks in the winter by renting a 4/3 wetsuit.
- Booties: We have plenty of booties to keep your little piggies warm. If its in the winter and you want to shred, we got you covered with a large selection of booties. After mid November, you will need boots and gloves in the Outer Banks until late May.
- Gloves: In the dead of winter you will need to wear gloves to score surfing the Outer Banks. We also have a large variety of sizes for gloves to keep your hands warm during your session. After mid November, you will need boots and gloves in the Outer Banks until May.
The Atlantic Street Inn
The Kitty Hawk Kayak & Surf School is stoked to announce our acquisition of the Atlantic Street Inn in Kill Devil Hills. The Atlantic Street Inn is a 6 bedroom boutique hotel one block from the ocean at Mile Post 9. This former oceanfront cottage has unique nautical craftsmanship that has preserved the old school charm from the property’s original days as an oceanfront cottage. A real throwback to an original Outer Banks beach cottage of the 1950s, the property has been modernized to include all the amenities you would expect with a modern, cottage but with classic Outer Banks nautical decor.
We are now able to offer flexible lodging options to our customers looking to get away for a few days on the Outer Banks. All rooms have a private bathroom and include access to a full kitchen, front porch, backyard cabana, and complimentary beach cruisers all steps away from the Atlantic Street public beach access.The Atlantic Street Inn is located within walking distance of some of the Outer banks’ finest restaurants such as the Outer Banks Brewing Station, Mama Kwans, Food Dudes, the Bonzer Shack, Slice Pizza, Fuji Steakhouse, Kill Devil Grill and Dare Devils Pizzeria
Kayaks, paddleboards, surfboards, wetsuits, are all available on site for rent. Reservations can be made through Atlantic Street Inn website, VRBO or AIRBNB. Check out our slideshow below that really captures the chill and relaxing vibe of the Atlantic Street Inn.
Video Virtual Tour
Photo Virtual Tour
Come join us for a classic, shred-filled adventure on the Outer Banks!
1 Bedroom Rental Apartment on the Outer Banks
Looking for a quick weekend getaway to the Outer Banks? Check out our Kill Devil Hills Hideaway on airbnb.com. We also offer a discount on all of our recreational activities and rental items for our guests. We can deliver your surf boards, wetsuits, kayaks, SUPs or some beach cruisers for a great weekend away or a week long rental.
This completely remodeled 750 square foot space offers a clean and modern feel while at the beach. Decor includes tiled showers and bathroom, hardwood floors, a full private kitchen and office space are great for a couple or solo traveler. Free internet is available for all our guests. Kitchen includes coffee maker, all appliances, microwave, blender etc.(all the basics) There is a small separate office included in this one bedroom unit. Summer rentals will only be Sat-Sat.
The property is located in Ocean Acres at Mile Post 8.5 in the Outer Banks. Within a 2 mile radius you have a Harris Teeter supermarket, Food Dudes, Kitchen, Mama Kwans, the Outer Banks Brewing Station, Pigmans BBQ, Duck Doughnuts, Slice Pizza, and all the usual fast food restaurants. In fact, its quite possibly the most centrally located beach property in the OBX. Of course the beach is 0.5 miles away!
Book your stay here on airbnb.com or call us at (252) 261-0145.
Black Bear Tours on the Outer Banks
The Kitty Hawk Kayak & Surf School has added our newest adventure activity on the Outer Banks: Black Bear Tours in the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge. Northeast North Carolina has one of the healthiest black bear populations on the planet, and we know just where to go to see these majestic animals. You and your family will enjoy a comfortable drive through the refuge in our air conditioned van with binoculars for safe viewing. We also give educational talks about the American black bear (Ursus americanus) and the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge. Observing black bear in their natural environment is such a cool experience that you will not soon forget. We commonly see black bears, deer, turkeys, alligators, red wolves, barred owls, red tailed hawks, turtles and other wildlife. The Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge is one of the greatest wildlife corridors on the East Coast of the United States. Come check it out and make memories to last a lifetime. Reservations can be made by calling (252) 261-0145.
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Mom and cubs
“What are you looking at?”
Ursus americanus traffic jam
Celebrating 10 Years on the Forefront of Outer Banks Recreation
Kitty Hawk Kayak and Surf School is Celebrating 10 Years on the Forefront of Outer Banks Recreation
Wow!!! We can’t believe Kitty Hawk Kayak & Surf School has been in business for 10 years!!! It has been a privilege, a blessing and really darn fun serving Outer Banks locals and visitors alike for the last 10 years!! And with no signs of slowing down yet we plan on helping folks on the Outer Banks learn how to surf, kayak and stand up paddle for many more years to come. And with a decade in business, it has got us nostalgically looking back over the last 10 years at our business and the many 1sts we have experienced as leaders of recreation on the Outer Banks.
- The first and only kayak outfitter on the Outer Banks to offer and require American Canoe and Kayak Certification for our guides. Today we offer more kayaking trip than any other outfitter on the Outer Banks.
- The first surf school on the Outer Banks to obtain certification with the National Surf School and Instructor Association.
- The Outer Banks’ first surf instructor certified by the National Surf School and Instructor Association.
- The first surf school on the Outer Banks to offer Stand Up Paddleboarding Lessons and tours. Today we offer and deliver more stand up paddleboard tours on the Outer Banks than any other outfitter on the beach in four locations from Duck to Avon.
- The first surf school to offer a full 5 day surf camp for locals and visitors incorporating surfing, kayaking, stand up paddle boarding, surf board factory visits and coastal education.
- We are the only outfitter on the Outer Banks pledging 1% of our gross receipts to local and international environmental stewardship programs through 1 Percent for the Planet. To date we have contributed almost $20,000 to programs that help conserve and protect our oceans, rainforests and coastlines.
- The first outfitter on the Outer Banks to offer guided kayak tours and stand up paddle trips at night to observe bioluminescent bacteria glowing in the water.
For 10 years we have always taken the safety of our customers very seriously, and we are committed to the sound training and safe protocols that we employ to make sure your trip or lesson with us is safe, fun and educational. We will continue to keep your families’ safety our top priority while continuing to offer more first class recreational activities in the incredible environment that is the barrier islands of the Outer Banks. Thanks for surfing, kayaking, renting and stand up paddling with us, and see you on the water!!
Herman Hall and Heather MacLean,
Owners Kitty Hawk Kayak & Surf School
Spring Action with Kitty Hawk Kayak & Surf School
Outer Banks Surf Spots ~ Top 5 on the OBX
Outer Banks Surf Spots ~ Top 5 on the OBX
Kitty Hawk Kayak and Surf School has been teaching people to surf for 10 years on the Outer Banks. Our certified NSSIA Surf School has long been the leader for surf lessons and surf camps on the OBX. And when you have shared the stoke of the shred with many people, we get asked “What are the Outer Banks Surf Spots that I should shred?” Below are our Top 5 Surf Spots on the OBX.
There is no secret that Avalon Pier has some of the best sand in town. It also has the best surfers in the water on any given day. Underground rippers and locally known pros all shred these pits and peaks on the regs. Located in the heart of Kill Devil Hills, this has been a go to spot for great sand bars for decades. Although the crowd can be tough, and the peanut gallery even tougher, getting a good wave at Avalon Pier feels so good. Just don’t blow it or you may not get another chance. Experts only.
This off the radar stretch of magic sand is located at the northern stretch on the Cape Hatteras National Seashore north of Oregon Inlet. This place can produce some really great waves, especially on larger swells. Not quite as heavy and hollow as other spots, this wave can make up for its lack of power with the length of the ride and lack of crowds. Usually this place is surfed with no one else in sight. Just watch out for sharks and make sure to hide your car. All levels welcome.
There are so many options on Pea Island for surfing it is impossible to chronicle it here in a blog post. However, the gist is this: empty hollow beach breaks that are almost as good as Rodanthe (and sometimes better) but with way less crowds. Located south of Oregon Inlet on Route 12, just pull over on the side of the road and start checking it. You never know when you are going to strike gold on Hatteras Island, and many a drive south has been cut short because the traveling surfer found just what the were looking for on Pea Island. Intermediates and up.
Cape Hatteras Light House
This goes without saying, but the Cape Hatteras lighthouse could very well be the best wave on the entire East Coast of the United States. This wave has many moods, from long ripable left hand point break-esque walls, to dredging, hollow spitting tubes. But shredder beware: a heavy local crew who surfs way better than you will be on it, and you could snap your board real quick. Or worse yet you could get dragged over the metal, rusty jetty by a clean up set. But this is a must surf spot for any East Coast surfer. And sometimes its completely empty. Experts only.
Perhaps the most under-rated (and under-surfed) spot on the entire Outer Banks is Duck Pier. Located on federally owned property by the Army Corp of Engineers in North Duck, this is the longest pier in North Carolina and this thing holds sand like nobodies business. On good days with good sand bars, this wave can be the closest thing to a point break (or Trestles) on the Outer Banks. Long, ripable walls with no one out are common, but accessing the pier is tricky. Expect a long walk in (and maybe a parking ticket), but all of this is worth the price of admission to empty, ripable, A frame walls. And make sure to check both sides of the pier!!! Sometimes you might not even be on the best peak. All levels welcome.
6 Ways To Ensure An Awesome Day Of Kayaking
Kayaking is definitely one of the most exciting water activities out there. If you are looking for an activity which can relieve you from stress as well as offer you an awesome time, kayaking is a great option. If you are planning to go on a kayaking trip, here are some ways on how to make it more awesome.
If you are to go kayaking on a hot summer day, you might want to wear quick dry shorts and a cool t-shirt. Clothes made of cotton can really be comfortable. If you want, you can wear a swim suit beneath your clothes especially since some tours allow for some quick dips in the water. Wearing a swim suit is also practical if you are to go for those long kayak camping trips where using a swim suit is almost unavoidable. For footwear, you can always wear a pair of sandals. And to protect you from the sun, do not forget to wear a hat – a sunhat or a ball cap would work fine. Also do not forget to wear sunglasses that have UV protection.
Bring the right equipments
The basic thing you need to bring would be water. Bring plenty of it especially on a hot day. Bring sunscreen to protect your skin from the sun as well as an insect repellent. If you know you are going to get too sweaty, bring a towel. A change of clothes would be practical especially if there is a chance of rain. Another important thing to bring is a camera especially if you like preserving those wonderful sights nature has to bring. If your camera isn’t waterproof, make sure you store it in a waterproof case. Of course, if you are to go on a kayaking camping trip, you would have to bring the essential items for outdoor camping like tissue paper, sleeping bags, and tents.
Be fit for the trip
One does not necessarily have to be so strong and physically fit for a kayaking trip. After all, even kids can easily row the paddles. But it would help if you can prepare yourself physically. Several hours of camping trip will require a strong heart and lungs. That is why doing short cardio exercises several days before kayaking can help you in a big way. Imagine finding yourself not having to catch your breath after several minutes of kayaking – that would surely help you enjoy more of the experience. Though not really necessary, it would also help you if row better if you improve your core and back muscles.
Be familiar with the basics
There are a lot of articles online that teach about the basics of kayaking. It would not hurt if you read them as they can really give you a lot of basic ideas. There are also a number of online videos that can teach you and help you be familiar with kayaking. Once you are in your kayak and holding your paddle, you would be able to apply the basic knowledge you have learned online. The basic skills which would be taught to you during the actual kayaking trip would also not be that hard to grasp once you have been familiar with the basics beforetime.
Consider the time and weather
Weather plays a great role in the outcome of your kayak trip. Usually, people prefer a warm, sunny day. You wouldn’t want to be kayaking out there at the heat of the day so it would be best to avoid kayaking at around noon. Go for an early morning trip a or pre-evening one if you want to enjoy a weather that neither extremely cold nor hot.
Take note that rain isn’t automatically an obstacle to a awesome kayaking trip. Showers during the summer can be enjoyed especially since these can cause wildlife to come out. Kayak trips are usually cancelled only for reasons such as thunderstorms or very strong winds. So do not get worried about having a miserable day just because you see dark clouds.
Go with the right people
Among the major factors that make kayaking trips fun are your companions. Be with the people whom you like to spend a lot of fun hours with. These people can be your family or your relatives. Kids can go kayaking too, but they just have to be on the same kayak with an adult. You can also consider going on a trip with your friends or even your office colleagues. It would surely be nice to enjoy nature and just relax with people whom you love to be with.
At Kitty Hawk Kayak, we can help you put together an awesome kayaking trip. We have kayaking trips covering various locations. We have overnight trips as well. Contact us now and find out more!
The 6 Health Benefits Of Kayaking
If you are ever thinking of a way to have fun and keep fit at the same time, you definitely have to consider kayaking. An exciting leisure activity, kayaking can benefit you in a number of ways. Here are some good examples:
Kayaking gives a good cardio workout
Cardiovascular workout is important as it keeps the heart healthy. Keeping the heart busy is vital to keep it strong. If it is not worked out, it would get weak overtime. Of course, a weak heart can be the cause of a variety of complications. Kayaking can surely give you a good cardio workout as you paddle through the waters. Cardio workouts, with their repetitive nature, can be quite boring; but this isn’t true with kayaking. It is one of those exciting cardio workouts that will surely keep you going and going. Your heart, as well as your lungs, will surely be tested in a fun and exciting way.
Kayaking can strengthen your lats
To be stronger, you must work out your muscles. The muscle group that benefits most from kayaking are definitely the lower back muscles or lats. With every stroke, your lats are heavily worked out. As one of your arms are used to row back, the other would be stretched and eventually be contracted as your with both arms alternately. In order to make your lats workout more effective, consider varying the speed of your rowing. You can row fast at a short period of time as well as do it in a slow yet hard way. After several kayaking trips, you would surely have a strong lower back.
Kayaking can give you firm abs
Go ahead and ask any fitness trainer on what muscle group is the most difficult to work out; you would most definitely get “the abs” for an answer. It is difficult to get firm and nice-looking abs especially since the stomach area is usually filled with hard-to-get-rid fats. But with kayaking, getting a six-pack in just a short amount of time is very much possible. The rotational movements you do in kayaking can be very demanding to your core muscles and thus, these would give the muscles a good workout. The demand for balance and stabilization can also contribute to the improvement of your abs.
Kayaking can give you strong, good-looking arms
If you go kayaking regularly, you can also have a bigger and a better-looking arm. Kayaking can surely improve the arm muscles. That is why if you would look at those who compete in kayaking events, whether local or in the Olympics, you would notice that they have bulky and firm-looking arms. Both the biceps and the triceps are worked-out as one arm rows in and another counters with a forward thrush. You do not have to worry if you are not that good at paddling. Paddling instructions are given before kayaking tours and you’ll be kayaking and working out those big guns in no time.
Kayaking can help you lose weight
Anyone who has been trying to lose weight should surely consider kayaking. An hour of kayaking happily through the waters can help anyone burn four hundred calories. To elaborate on that, three hours of kayaking can burn up to 1200 calories. It is for this reason that kayaking is one of the top exercises that burn more calories than the traditional weight loss workout which is jogging. So if you want to get that summer, bikini-ready body, then kayaking is the way to go. It definitely is a thrilling activity to lose weight. Losing weight can be quite a challenge. It is good that kayaking can help make shedding those pounds a lot easier.
Kayaking can help get rid of stress
Stress is something that most people do not treat as a stranger. It is common and it can attack anyone at any age. It is a good thing that kayaking can be a remedy for very high stress levels. Everything about kayaking is enjoyable and relaxing. For starters, you get to enjoy the feeling of floating on water. And nothing can beat the feeling of enjoying the sceneries as the cold breeze blows against your face. Of course, there is also the soothing experience of hearing your paddles splash against the water. Your workout itself can also help condition your body to get rid of stress.
Indeed, kayaking surely has a lot of health benefits. Yes, it is a leisure activity, but you can definitely get healthier by doing it. Have you heard of kayak tours before? Why not consider going kayaking with some friends and family? If you are planning for a great kayaking experience, do consider Kitty Hawk Kayak tours. We are situated at Kitty Hawk, NC and we have everything you would need for a wonderful day or more of kayaking!
5 Reasons Why You Should Take Your Kids On A Kayak Camping Trip
A kayak camping trip combines the thrills of kayaking and the joys of camping. If you are thinking of a great way to spend the weekend with your kids, you should consider going on a kayak camping trip. Here are some convincing reasons why you should do so:
They get to see the beauty of nature
Kayak camping trips will bring your kids closer to nature. It is always nice to bring kids who grew up in an urban setting to remote natural places. They get to experience a new world that is far different from what they have become accustomed to. Kayak camping trips will let your kids see beautiful sceneries of lush trees, clear skies, and amazing landscapes. They get to paddle through the waters and feel the fresh air as they enjoy the wonderful sights around them. They get to see animals and plants in their natural environment. Some activities you can ask your kids to do include taking photos of their favourite sites as well as drawing some natural scenes once you have set up camp.
They get to enjoy unstructured play
Another good reason why kayak camping trips are great is that once you reach the campsite, kids can enjoy unstructured play. They get to play on their own, be free, and be the kids they are supposed to be. It is at remote natural places where kids can enjoy free play at its best. Kids indeed need to play on their own – away from the structured environments of home and school. Free play at campsites can really create a good environment where kids can relax and simply have fun. They also get to share an amazing bond between their playmates be it their siblings, relatives, or friends. And they also get to play while kayaking. For example, they can play “I spy” or they can even have kayak races. (If they are too young though, they would have to be with an adult in the same kayak.)
They get to be more physically active
Kids these days are very different from the kids the adults of today used to be. Kids today can actually spend more than a day indoors and not get bored. This is because there is always technology to keep them occupied. There are gaming consoles as well as the Internet to keep them very busy. Nothing is wrong with technology but if enjoyed too much, kids end up getting inactive. And once they get inactive, they end up getting physically unfit. Kayak camping trips can be great outlets for kids who have gotten too hooked up with technology. It is time to have your kids take a break from their gadgets and let them enjoy the natural world where they live.
They get to develop life-long skills
When children go camping outdoors, they get to develop too many life-long skills. The majority of these would be survival skills. They get to learn how to survive outdoors and be resourceful with what they have. They get to cook without stoves, get food from the wild, use a variety of camping tools among others. What is also interesting is that aside from skills, they also get to benefit from secondary benefits. These benefits are lessons which they can learn from their camping experience in the wild. For example, a couple of days out there in the wild can help them be more appreciative of nature and it can motivate them to promote environmentalism as well as be more conscious with the natural world around them. And in special camping trips like kayaking camping trips, of course, they get to learn how to travel in a kayak.
They get to spend more quality time with you
Most importantly, it is ideal to take your kids on a kayak camping trip because that would be one of the few chances where you can enjoy time with your kids while they are still kids. They will not stay as kids for a long time. In no time, they would be grown adults and sadly, they would start to get busy with their own lives. Thus, while they are young, you should really make sure you get to spend time with them; and one of the best activities to spend with your kids is surely camping. While kayaking and camping, you get to spend time with them. You get to play with them. You get to impart to them various skills. You get to be a good parent to them. Kayak camping trips can develop a good bond between you and your kids. These trips can help create good memories that they will surely bring into their adulthood.
So what are you waiting for? Do consider planning a camping trip. You might want to go kayak camping with Kitty Hawk Kayak, one of the most reputable kayak tour operators on the Outer Banks. Consider Corolla, NC kayak rentals and contact us as soon as possible.