Winter is Wow on the Outer Banks

Couple waking on beach in winter

Now that winter has officially settled on the Outer Banks things will slow down, but that slower pace does not mean there’s nothing to do. Actually there is almost as much to do on the Outer Banks in the winter a there is in the summer, although we will admit that not too many people go swimming this time of the year.

For the folks who are coming for a visit, here are three things to do:

Go Fish

Just because it’s cold, doesn’t mean the fish aren’t there. Especially in the Gulf Stream, tuna and billfish are biting. Of course that takes a charter boat to get to the the action, but for anyone who has the time to take a day or half day to see what’s out there, it’s a good time of the year.

Nearshore. inshore and from the piers this is a great time for stripers, although when the water temp falls below 50 things do slow down. Look for red drum and occasional blues and trout as well.


Winter is the time of year that some of the best wave action is generated, although conditions can be a bit iffy, especially if a nor’easter blows through. Nonetheless, the surf action is worth checking out. Bring your wetsuit and booties though. Water temps regularly fall to the low 40s.

Walk on the Beach

Not every activity is an athletic contest on the Outer Banks in the winter, and there may be nothing quite as pleasant as walking along a mostly deserted beach in January. A great time to look for seaglass, driftwood and the oddly shaped shell, because you’ll have the beach mostly to yourself, winter may be the best time to take a walk