Nags Head sand dunes are growing

Posted at 11:42 PM, Aug 27, 2013
and last updated 2013-08-28 00:13:10-04

Outer Banks, NC - Sand loss is shrinking the beaches all around the Outer Banks, and it seems Nags Head has the solution.

"It's just a beautiful relaxing place to be," says Judy Burleson. "I just think it's one of the prettiest beaches I've ever been to."

The town dumped tons of sand and put up 30 million dollars two years ago for beach replenishment. The goal was that the sand wouldn't wash away for a decade. Now it looks like it'll last a lot longer.

A recently released study found just 3% of the new sand had gone out with the tide.

"It seems like the community really cares a lot about the beach so it shows for sure as an outsider," Rocky Castlebury of Springfield, MO said.

"People don't think about the fact that some of that sand is going to go out, but if it's on the sand bar, that's still helping to protect the beach," said Danny Stone of Nags Head.

The sand dunes are staying intact, and in many places they are getting bigger and vegetation is growing thicker than normal.

Even with the good news, Nags Head isn't declaring victory just yet.
It's too early to tell, and Mother Nature isn't easy to hold off.

"They're going to have to keep on replenishing the sand, that's global warming and everything else," Stone said. "100 years from now, it's a different story, but for now you can kind of manage through it."

Managing through is what they'll do, so neither the sand nor people's memory of it wash away.