After a week on the shores of the beautiful Atlantic
Ocean at North Carolina’s famed Outer Banks (should have been at least
two--weeks, that is), I have many things to report to Hoosier anglers and
One sees a lot of Indiana auto license plates
there, you know, and it is well to let the Tar Heels know we Hoosiers “trust
Otherwise, I must point out that N.C. (gasp .
. . at last) requires anglers who fish salt waters to be licensed. This
is a good thing because we must protect our oceans the same way we protect
the land. There’s no longer a free lunch, you know. If you dance, you pay
However, I would have to say the tab (10 simoleons
for 10 days) for a non-resident fishing license may be a bit steep for
one who is planning to fish only a few times. That may keep the fishing
poles in some stilted cottages. Those younger than 16 are free fishing
Incidentally, if one “fishes” for crabs he/she
must also have a license. There is a license for everything, almost. Reminds
me of the fun we (the kids and I) had 25 years ago catching bluepoint crabs
for the table with a fishing pole, four feet of string, a chicken neck
and a landing net
Aside from the 10-day, 10 bucks fishing license,
one may purchase an annual license to fish for $30, a better deal, ($15
for residents) or a lifetime license to fish for $500 ($250 for residents).
If one elects to fish from a public fishing pier,
the license is not required, if the pier holds a “blanket license” that
is quite expensive, the cost undoubtedly being included in the cost to
fishing a pier. The cost of fishing Avon Fishing Pier is $10 for one day,
and I personally found that very steep in more ways than one. The buckling
pier is in pretty sad shape . . . in places doubling as a toboggan run
(the ravages of a usually-angry Atlantic).
You can’t fault the beautiful beaches, access,
or the way they are maintained (guarded by the beautiful stands of sea
oats swaying in ocean breezes), and there is ample room for the wildest
touch football or volleyball game. And if one is of that ilk, the oceanside
campgrounds allow you to go to sleep at night with the incessant pounding
(thud) of the surf (every seventh wave is a big one).
Who could ever ignore the aura that builds in
the adventurer’s heart when the periodicals and knowledgeable locals spin
yarns of Blackbeard’s (the pirate) plunderous, murderous sea ramblings
of the early 1700s . . . or playing a game of catch (a stone from the parking
lot) with Lucy, Tilman Gray’s black lab at the dilapidated commercial “Fish
House” (my name for it) on the shores of Pamlico Sound on the west side
of Avon. Lucy has been at the Fish House for several years, but I discovered
this year that she throws stones and retrieves with great verve . . . and
she--like her companions (A. Rod and Orio) love to have their ears scratched
. . . Not a bad memory is that of the five-pound speckled sea trout all
dressed in browned breading, or the Taylor (smallish) blue, or spot, or
brace of 10-inch pompano that helped me experiment with sauteing with only
cooking oil and some salt and pepper in my skillet--a fish lover’s delight.
So there you have it, Joneses. The OBX is one
tough nut to crack.