Cape Hatteras is shaped like a boomerang, with ocean beaches generally facing East, and South. This setup allows for greatly varying ocean windsurfing conditions, even at sites just a mile apart, on any given day. Luckily, the scale of the island is fairly small, so it’s not that hard to check a few places before you settle on a spot, and grabbing two sessions in two different spots within the same afternoon is totally feasible, too!
Let’s take our Spring and Summer predominant southwest winds for example: If you’re seeking side-on conditions for big jumps and backside wave rides, head down to the southside and launch at Isabel’s. Conversely, if you’re seeking side-off conditions for clean, down the line wave rides, stick to the East facing beaches and hit up Ego Beach.
We also have a lot of northeast days, too. This wind direction tends to kick up a very big swell, very quickly. Most of the time, we like to get an early side-on session at the Lighthouse as the swell is building. By the next day, it tends to be completely out of control at the Lighthouse, so we head down to the South side of the Island to find a nice wave for some side-off conditions. The trick to finding your spot on those side-off days is just exploring a little bit. The wave generally gets bigger the further west you go, but so does the current, shorepound, etc etc… So if you’re just figuring things out, I’d look for a spot with the smallest waves you can find, until you get some confidence up.
Don’t forget to read some of the Helpful Hints before you hit the water!!
For a list of oceanside launches, check the main menu.
If the wind is blowing (x) and you want to know the where to go, click on the appropriate direction below: