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Currituck Banks National Estuarine Research Reserve Access Trail

This beautiful boardwalk leads two-thirds of a mile from the road to the sound, traversing through maritime evergreen forest, swamp forest and brackish marsh. Along the way, you’ll see live oaks and loblolly pines, yaupon, holly, bayberry and wax myrtle, plus closer to the water, sedges, cattails, black needle rush and giant cord grass.

The mixing of the warm Gulf Stream current and the cool Labrador Current off Currituck Banks creates a climate where northern species reach the southern limit of their ranges and southern species reach the northern limit of their ranges. As a result, a diversity of species from both regions is found here.

Soundside, End of N.C. Highway 12. Visitor parking for boardwalk and trail use is located at the sharp turn in the road. Beach access is limited to four-wheel drive vehicles.