Here we are at the last weekend of the summer which is often a time to reflect back on how things have gone. 

If there is one word to describe this summer, it would probably be interesting…as in not easily categorized and thinking about it is an interesting exercise.

On the northern Outer Banks it seemed to be a pretty good season, maybe even record breaking, at least for visitation. Any exuberance, though, is tempered by the two weeks at the height of the season Hatteras Island lost because of human error when workers severed the power line that provides electricity to Hatteras and Ocracoke.

We won’t know the full effect on visitation until sometime in late September or early October, but there can be no doubt that it was a painful experience for our friends on Hatteras Island.

Weekend traffic continues to be an issue, although the traffic jams didn’t seem quite as bad this year as in years past. Since visitation appears to have been about the same or maybe even a little better at times, it does pose the questions, “why?”

Keyless entry has probably played a role, some renters arrived earlier, went shopping or went to the beach, and the towns have cooperated trying to move traffic a little more efficiently. But it’s anyone’s guess about why this year seemed a bit better than years past.

That doesn’t mean there weren’t problems.

People keep turning off US 158 when they get to South Dogwood Trail about a half mile past the Wright Memorial Bridge. Google Maps has decided that is the quickest route to Duck and Corolla, and we can’t stress enough—Google Maps is wrong!

The route through Southern Shores is on residential streets, and they are residential in the truest sense of the word. Narrow with a 25mph speed limit, South Dogwood Trail and the other streets of the town were never intended to handle the traffic that tries to use those road. It’s a longer distance but better travel time staying on US 158 until the major intersection a half mile farther on.

The fall is looking great with some fantastic entertainment coming to the Outer Banks. Take a look at the week leading up to Columbus day especially with the Outer Banks Bluegrass Festival Wednesday through Saturday and the Duck Jazz Festival on Sunday.