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Ask Frank Daignault Frank Daignault is recognized as an authority on surf fishing for striped bass. He is the author of six books and hundreds of magazine articles. Frank is a member of the Outdoor Writers of America and lectures throughout the Northeast.

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Old 10-01-2013, 05:13 PM
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Stan Creighton Stan Creighton is offline
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Default Cape Hatteras Beach Ramps CLOSED!

Hello Frank, and the rest of the Striper Surf crew:

Given the government shut-down, the beach ramps onto the Cape Hatteras have chains across them.

I imagine there is a similar situation at Cape Cod.

Here is the report on it:




September 30, 2013



Government shutdown will close down
the seashore and its beaches
By IRENE NOLAN

With only hours to go for Congress to reach an agreement on a continuing resolution to keep the U.S. government operating, a total shutdown of the Cape Hatteras National Seashore is looming large.

If there is no agreement by midnight tonight, National Park Service staffers will come to work in the morning to secure and close down all facilities and grounds on the seashore and the other parks in the Outer Banks Group ? Wright Brothers National Monument and Fort Raleigh National Historic Site.

When their work is done, 146 employees of the Outer Banks Group will be furloughed, while 13 will continue working to ensure public safety.

?We are still hopeful,? said Darrell Echols, deputy superintendent of the group.

However, a solution to the impasse in Congress is less likely with each passing hour.

Residents and visitors can expect wide-ranging consequences tomorrow if there is a government shutdown.

They include:

  • By 7 a.m. all ramps on the seashore ? on the oceanside and the soundside ? will be chained.
  • All visitor centers and maintenance and administrative facilities will be closed.
  • The road to the Bodie Island Lighthouse will be blocked. The Lighthouse Road in Buxton will be blocked just beyond Flowers Ridge Road.
  • All ORV permit offices will be closed.
  • All parking areas on the soundside and the oceanside will be closed and secured ? including facilities at Coquina Beach, Ocracoke Day Use Area, Canadian Hole, Kite Point, the Frisco Bathhouse, and Sandy Bay day use area. Also closed and secured will be all parking areas at various oceanside ramps on Hatteras and Ocracoke.
  • Campers will have 48 hours after Tuesday at 6 p.m. to clear the campgrounds.
  • Commercial operations within the seashore will also close, including the Avon Pier, Oregon Inlet Fishing Center, and businesses that offer attractions such as horseback riding on the beach. The Fishing Center will have until 6 p.m. Thursday to close down.
  • The Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum, a state-owned facility on park land, will remain open.
  • The three airstrips in the park area will be closed.
  • All National Park Service websites will be closed down, and visitors to the sites will get a message about the shutdown.

Although these restrictions will shut down ORV access to the seashore, pedestrian access will be allowed in areas such as the oceanfront and oceanside houses in the villages.

However, access to either the sound or ocean beaches by parking along Highway 12 right-of-way and walking in to kiteboard, surfboard, fish, or surf will also be prohibited.

For all practical purposes, access to the sound and the ocean will be allowed only from private land.

Echols said all of the park must be closed or secured by noon tomorrow.

Thirteen park employees will remain on the job, including nine law enforcement rangers, a public affairs specialist, two water treatment plant operators, and one person who cares for the Ocracoke ponies. Paul Stevens, the chief law enforcement rangers for the Outer Banks Group, will be the incident commander.

In the last government shutdowns in 1995 and 1996, furloughed employees were paid retroactively, but there is no guarantee that Congress will agree to do the same if it happens tomorrow.

If the government shutdown happens in the morning, it?s anyone?s guess how long it will last.



Mule, I guess you will have to postpone your Red Drum drum trip to the OBX.





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Old 10-01-2013, 07:58 PM
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Default Re: Cape Hatteras Beach Ramps CLOSED!

Then we wonder why the government is so unpopular. Furloghed, they can walk away or they can lock the gates. See where their heart is? See what they chose?
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Old 10-02-2013, 06:46 AM
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Default Re: Cape Hatteras Beach Ramps CLOSED!

It seems the height of insanity that they close "sand".

There is a bird sanctuary here, managed by the NPS, that consists of a dirt road, a visitor center run by volunteers, and some walking trails.

It's "closed", gate locked.

When you go there you never even see an NPS person, they hide out in an office doing... what exactly?

Ludicrous
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Old 10-02-2013, 09:54 AM
clambellies clambellies is offline
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Default Re: Cape Hatteras Beach Ramps CLOSED!

My niece and her fiance were married last Saturday and before they went on their destination honeymoon they went to Acadia in Maine for a pre-honeymoon for a couple of days of hiking and camping - you guess it.....they were run out of the park as it closed.
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Old 10-02-2013, 10:44 AM
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Default Re: Cape Hatteras Beach Ramps CLOSED!

So, let me get this straight. You guys are mad at the park rangers who were forced to lock the gates and not at Congress who closed the parks?
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Old 10-02-2013, 12:13 PM
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Default Re: Cape Hatteras Beach Ramps CLOSED!

Its one thing to shut down visitor centers that need to be manned but "Open air" parks and monuments should never be closed. If they're going to enforce these closures then it stands to reason someone is still working there. If someone is still working there they should be open. I'm disappointed in the NPS. Just go home and leave the gates open to our land - you work for "we the people".
DZ
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Old 10-02-2013, 12:55 PM
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Default Re: Cape Hatteras Beach Ramps CLOSED!

Before this gets out of hand with me getting let me just say that I think it has to do with each of our ideas about what the role of the NPS should be. For instance - should there be federal lands managed by the NPS? If the hoards come in and deface the statue of liberty, or sh*t and litter all over the forest in rocky mt national park while destroying tundra, should it be their job to clean it up when the government reopens? What if they are worried about irreparable damage? Keep in mind the rangers are currently without pay, as are the "essential government employees" which includes the enforcement, who are currently working without pay. My opinion is, right now get pissed at congress instead and then when the government reopens we can talk about the NPS policies.
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Old 10-02-2013, 02:03 PM
Chris Garrity Chris Garrity is online now
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Default Re: Cape Hatteras Beach Ramps CLOSED!

How do they close a beach? Can't you just walk around it? I understand how they could close it to vehicles -- that seems easy -- but how do they keep you from accessing it by foot?

It's like closing a golf course. Golf courses are always open, because if they close, then everyone plays for free. To enforce the closure, ya gotta have people there, and if you're gonna have people there, you might as well just open the pro shop and charge the people who want to play.

Aren't the beaches that way? Are they really closed to walk-on traffic?
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Old 10-02-2013, 03:14 PM
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Default Re: Cape Hatteras Beach Ramps CLOSED!

Quote:
Originally Posted by akoller View Post
So, let me get this straight. You guys are mad at the park rangers who were forced to lock the gates and not at Congress who closed the parks?
Andrew, the hostility you are seeing here is from years of government abuse. You can't spend years being lied to and getting your ash kicked without experienceing the result. There is one thing we finally agree on: that this is a sore subject and the reason for that is the site is peopled by surfcasters.
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Old 10-03-2013, 09:52 AM
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Default Re: Cape Hatteras Beach Ramps CLOSED!

Your all blaming the wrong folks. I'm no fan of the National Park Service, especially after what I saw and had to put up with at Nauset when I lived on Cape Cod.

However, NPS is not to blame for Nauset, Hatteral and other National Seashore access closures. Neither is the US Fish & Wildlife Service for closing access to many of their refuges. Neither is the military for closing dozens of comissaries and base exchanges.

The blame lies with the two houses of our National Congress together with the Republican and Democratic Parties and their failure to fund federal services. You're seeing closures because of mandated furloughs of the folks who patrol those beaches and refuges and ultimately the blame is with you and I for sending those idiots to Washington as our elected representatives.
BillH
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Old 10-03-2013, 01:36 PM
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Default Re: Cape Hatteras Beach Ramps CLOSED!

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Originally Posted by akoller View Post
So, let me get this straight. You guys are mad at the park rangers who were forced to lock the gates and not at Congress who closed the parks?
Yes, because its also part of the "play" Come on, parks are naturaly OPEN. Forbidding citizens to use an OPEN area last I looked at was not part of a "closure" Its called a vindicitive goverment, which by the way is OUR goverment, our goverment employees. When was the last time any of your elected employees asked your opinion...
We as citizens should just take the chains of of OUR land, but no BALLS to do so. When is enough enough.
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Old 10-03-2013, 02:30 PM
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Default Re: Cape Hatteras Beach Ramps CLOSED!

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Originally Posted by lagoonguy View Post
Your all blaming the wrong folks. I'm no fan of the National Park Service, especially after what I saw and had to put up with at Nauset when I lived on Cape Cod.

However, NPS is not to blame for Nauset, Hatteral and other National Seashore access closures. Neither is the US Fish & Wildlife Service for closing access to many of their refuges. Neither is the military for closing dozens of comissaries and base exchanges.

The blame lies with the two houses of our National Congress together with the Republican and Democratic Parties and their failure to fund federal services. You're seeing closures because of mandated furloughs of the folks who patrol those beaches and refuges and ultimately the blame is with you and I for sending those idiots to Washington as our elected representatives.
BillH


I understand that some people have had bad experience with government officials. I'm sure there are bad eggs and probably a culture that clashes directly with surfcasters. But to paint every federal employee with the same brush is truly ignorant. There aren't secret meetings where they teach federal workers to be vindictive. For instance, here at NIST in Boulder most scientists were forced to shut down their experiments and the science has ground to a halt. I found out that, for the most part, the open federal lands in Colorado have been "left open" except that the facilities are all closed. So that at least appears pretty reasonable.
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Old 10-03-2013, 03:24 PM
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Default Re: Cape Hatteras Beach Ramps CLOSED!

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Originally Posted by akoller View Post


I understand that some people have had bad experience with government officials. I'm sure there are bad eggs and probably a culture that clashes directly with surfcasters. But to paint every federal employee with the same brush is truly ignorant. There aren't secret meetings where they teach federal workers to be vindictive. For instance, here at NIST in Boulder most scientists were forced to shut down their experiments and the science has ground to a halt. I found out that, for the most part, the open federal lands in Colorado have been "left open" except that the facilities are all closed. So that at least appears pretty reasonable.
I understand the workers are just following the queen ant but, again, there is someone in there that saying,"they want us to shut down, lets lock it all so no one can access it"
Who's idea was it to chain off the national seashore instead of just locking the offices?
I know we"re not far off on our thinking and are very angry over the government as a whole, well, at least I am.
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Old 10-03-2013, 03:27 PM
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Default Re: Cape Hatteras Beach Ramps CLOSED!

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Originally Posted by lagoonguy View Post
The blame lies with the two houses of our National Congress together with the Republican and Democratic Parties and their failure to fund federal services. You're seeing closures because of mandated furloughs of the folks who patrol those beaches and refuges and ultimately the blame is with you and I for sending those idiots to Washington as our elected representatives.
BillH
This I whole heartedly agree with. And this is something that should change.
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Old 10-04-2013, 07:55 AM
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Default Re: Cape Hatteras Beach Ramps CLOSED!

Quote:
Originally Posted by akoller View Post


I understand that some people have had bad experience with government officials. I'm sure there are bad eggs and probably a culture that clashes directly with surfcasters. But to paint every federal employee with the same brush is truly ignorant. There aren't secret meetings where they teach federal workers to be vindictive. For instance, here at NIST in Boulder most scientists were forced to shut down their experiments and the science has ground to a halt. I found out that, for the most part, the open federal lands in Colorado have been "left open" except that the facilities are all closed. So that at least appears pretty reasonable.
I've got 2 things rolling around in my head. (which is more than what my wife believes I have up there at all!)

1. it's sad we have to even think that the government not closing down "land" at all is "reasonable" and
2. that places such as you describe were not shut down because they don't attract political attention.

I've realized that my anger at the NPS *in this instance* is misdirected, since the decision as to what will be shut down has been strongly influenced by the smoking golfer who resides in the white house. I'm not sure he ever enjoyed anything outdoors except for smoking some wild grown plants.

That said, we surfcasters on the east coast may hold a particularly strong bias against "anything NPS".

In my case, it's never an anger directed at individual employees... at least certainly not at low levels. The NPS bureaucracy however lends itself to decisions that don't serve the public, IMO.
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