01 March 2016

Fort Macon nature trails

The eastern end of Bogue Banks, the barrier island that protects part of Carteret County NC from the ocean and storms, is the site of a 19th century brick fortification called Fort Macon. Around the fort are several nature trails through maritime forest, marsh, and dunes, as well as along the beach strand.

Yucca plants along the trail


I'm not sure if this qualifies as one, but a geographical feature specific to eastern North Carolina and neighboring parts of South Carolina and Virginia, is the pocosin, a kind of bog. It's a marine wetland, in this case, and is not tidal. I'm not sure whether the trees in the photos above and below are dead or are just dormant for the winter.

At the north end of the nature trail I was walking, hikers have a view of Beaufort Inlet and Morehead City harbor. There's a lot of boat traffic that includes ocean-going vessels, fishing boats, power boats of all sizes, yachts, and sailboats like the one below.


Not far west on the beach, jutting out into the surf, is one of the two or three remaining fishing piers on Bogue Banks. There used to be many more, but land developers building condominium complexes and bought them out and torn them down, using the beachfront property around them for new buildings.


Back in 1969 and 1970, when I was in college, I worked at one fishing pier selling bait and tackle and serving as a short-order cook in the pier's grill. I guess that was when I first got interested in cooking. Over the summer of 1970, after my first stay in France, I worked the night shift (9 p.m. to 6 a.m) at the pier, flipping 'burgers, steaming hotdogs and buns, and making omelets and egg sandwiches, among other breakfast specialties. I have great memories of beautiful sunrises when great schools of albacore tuna, bluefish, or bottlenose dolphins would swim past, sometimes stretching as far as the eye could see.

13 comments:

chm said...

Did you have many customers in the dead of night in those days?

alex said...

I enjoy your blog with my first cup of coffee each day. Now that you are in America the time difference, I suspect, has caused your blog to be delivered late. You can imagine my disappointment, coffee but no blog. Please get up earlier!! I'm joking, of course, I enjoy you blog at any time keep up the good work. THANKS

Ken Broadhurst said...

Yes, there were a lot of customers, especially on Friday and Saturday nights. Some were people coming in when the local bars closed in the wee hours. They weren't always pleasant to deal with. Others were people who were serious about fishing. They'd spend the night on the pier, and come into the pierhouse for a midnight hamburger or hot dog or an early morning breakfast of bacon and eggs.

Ken Broadhurst said...

I put today's blog post together yesterday, but I forgot to schedule it for publication in the middle of the night (U.S. time) before I went to bed last night. Sorriest. No worries, though: I'll be back in France on Thursday and will get myself on schedule again. Thanks for your kind comment.

alex said...

I don't get to France as often as I like but your blog keeps the interest going. My Mother, brother and his partner went to Saint Aignan last year and that is when I discovered your blog. I particularly like the way you explain about the use of the French language and I have been inspired by some of your recipes. Cheers

Anonymous said...

Hi Ken, I'm more on the other side of the timeline, so to say: I enjoy your blog with my first glass of wine each day, but I also noticed nothing was there today :-)! Wishing you a safe flight back home, greetings from Perth WA, Jan

Evelyn said...

We're never the same after our first stay in France.

Ken Broadhurst said...

Hello out there, Jan. Thanks for the nice words. I'll be flying tomorrow.

Ken Broadhurst said...

I know I never was, and you too from what you've told me. I'll be glad to get back home after leaving... home. Tomorrow and Thursday will be adventures, as travel days often are. I have some really tight connections in Paris between plane and train. Wish me luck.

Diogenes said...

I wonder if you still see the abundant numbers of fish and sea creatures from the pier? It sounds beautiful.

The summers of 1969 and 1970, the time of Woodstock. The Age of Aquarius. Lots of good music in that era from Janice Joplin, Joni Mitchell to Crosby Stills and Nash.

Ken Broadhurst said...

I don't know the answer, D. You'd have to be over there at 5 in the morning in summertime to find out. Maybe one day...

LaPré DelaForge said...

Safe flight Ken!

Gosia k said...

yucca plant looks different than mine