From Whalebone Junction in South Nags Head, Cape Hatteras National Seashore stretches 70 miles south down the Outer Banks barrier islands. The drive along N.C. 12 (about 4 1/2 hr.) takes you through a wildlife refuge and pleasant villages, past miles of sandy beaches untainted by commercial development, and on to Buxton and the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, the tallest on the coast. Since 1870, the light has been a beacon for ships passing through these treacherous waters, which have claimed more than 1,500 victims by means of foul weather, strong rip currents, and shifting shoals. This is where the ironclad Union gunboat Monitor went down during a storm in December 1862. … Back to Article
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