Hatteras Inlet, 11 miles westward of Cape Hatteras Light, is entered over a shifting bar which is subject to continual change; local knowledge is recommended.
The approach is marked by a lighted buoy; buoys marking the channel over the bar are not charted because they are frequently shifted in position. An 88-foot lookout tower showing a white light on the east side of the inlet is a conspicuous mark. Hatteras Inlet Crab Spawning Sanctuary, a Marine
Managed Area (MMA), is in the inlet near Hatteras Island and Pamlico Sound.
Hatteras Inlet Channel is a dredged channel that leads from Hatteras Inlet to Rollinson Channel in the vicinity of the basin entrance at Hatteras. The channel is reported to shoal rapidly between dredgings. In 1981-May 2000, the controlling depth
was 6 feet. The channel is marked by lights, buoys, and daybeacons. In September 1999, a side channel to Austin Creek had a controlling depth of 5½ feet to the Coast Guard pier and the ferry
landing. The creek channel is marked by two lights.
Rollinson Channel, the approach to Hatteras from Pamlico Sound.A small ferry
carries vehicles and passengers across Hatteras Inlet from Austin Creek to Ocracoke
Island.Tides: The mean range of tide is 2 feet on the bar. In the channels the height of the water depends upon the direction and force of the wind
.Currents: The tidal currents in the channel through the inlet are influenced by winds and attain velocities of about 2 knots.The most recent Army Corp depth survey
can be found at:http://www.saw.usace.army.mil/Missio...llHarbors.aspx