This was a great summer because I got to ride my bike on the coast in 2 states. So, now I can compare biking on Maryland’s Eastern Shore with biking on North Carolina’s Outer Banks!
I went with some friends to Kitty Hawk for the 4th of July. There was a hurricane, it did not hit us. I went on a bike ride that I did not Strava because my phone was dead, but I think it was probably about 20 miles.
I found another great bike shop: Kitty Hawk Cycles. Really enjoyed talking to the proprietor about how his business model has shifted into the bike rental space, and the vagaries of bike fitting. There’s a lot of good information online about biking along the OBX, way more than on the eastern shore. I had a much easier time figuring out where we were going than I did in Maryland, and it does seem easier to get around to different kinds of things, because the Outer Banks seemed a little more compact, and there were more quiet roads that you could cut through.
It’s obvious that Dare County has invested a lot in the bike infrastructure there, there are a lot of really nice off-road paths through woods and neighborhoods, and an awesome few along the water:
There was a lot more traffic in North Carolina than in Maryland, and I think maybe less to look at, too. It was definitely a normal beach town – no old fishing stuff to look at, just dunes/wood stairways over the dunes, lots of people and typical beach-type stores. One attraction is the Wright Memorial, which, as a Brazilian, is not of great interest to me since everyone knows that Alberto Santos-Dumont flew the first successful fixed-wing airplane. However! There are sweet views to be had from the top.
Did you know that the “Wright Gate” at Fort Myer in Arlington, Virginia is also named for the Wright Brothers, who tested airplanes there? Kind of funny that my daily ride also includes a little aviation history.
Bring a lock on this ride – bikes are not allowed up the hill. The bike rack here is one of those awful ones where if there are more than two bikes you can only lock your wheel, if I recall correctly. So a bigger u-lock is better – can’t remember seeing anywhere else to lock up. Also, a change of shoes if you can’t stand the sound of your cleats on cement.
Something cool about this ride: there is a tiny airfield beside the hill, and you can watch the planes take off, like a miniature Gravelly Point.
I think I preferred our ride in Maryland, though: the scenery was more varied and the seafood was aces.