Summer is officially in full swing here in Eastern North Carolina. My buddy Andrew and I thought we'd kick things off by paddling (with mutts) to Sugarloaf Island, located along the Crystal Coast, just off of downtown Morehead City.
When you research where to launch a kayak in Morehead City you'll find lots of options. Spoiler alert: a lot of those launch sites listed are horrible places to launch a kayak. For example, downtown Jaycee Park/City Docks is commonly listed...but the docks there are way too high for kayaks. We highly recommend launching from nearby 11th street water access (South 11th & Shepard Street). There's lots of parking, a grassy area to get setup and a nice beach to launch from. Good news though, if the launch is full there are lots of plan B launch sites along the Morehead waterfront. Just know: some are better than others - try for the 11th and Shepard first.
Pow! A look at Sugarloaf Island from the sky! You can see how small yet undeveloped she is, and how close the island really is to downtown. The lack of buildings on the island is no accident - it is protected and managed by theNC Coastal Federation, like a lot of other islands in the area. Sugarloaf is around 47 acres with a trail through the middle and restrooms.
We paddled around the wild side (facing the ocean) and then turned the corner to the city side.
As you pass downtown you'll eventually arrive at the dock for the island. Spoiler alert: the dock is extremely high for kayaks - it's much better to land on the wild side beach (oceanside of the island).
As we neared the end of our circumnavigation of Sugarloaf Island we stumbled upon a few interesting vessels. Trash boats! What!?!?! Does someone liveaboard these neglected sailboats? Do passing party boats just throw their trash aboard? We have no idea but they seem mysterious.
Viva la summer! We had a blast on our quick paddle around Morehead City's Sugarloaf Island. Be sure to check out our instagram and follow where we're currently adventuring. As always, check back for new posts here once a week (soon moving to twice a week!).
~Paul & Andrew everyonestravelclub.com
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