Wednesday, June 16, 2004

NC Beach Trip

Chapel Hill to Oak Island: I 40 East, NC 133 South, NC 87 South, NC 133 South
Day Trip to Fort Fisher: NC 133 North, NC 210 South, Southport-Fort Fisher Ferry, US 412 North, River Road, US 117 North, US 421 North, US 17 South, NC 133 South
Day Trip to Myrtle Beach and Calabash: NC 133 North, NC 210 North, US 17 South, US 17 Business South, Ocean Boulevard, SC 73 East, US 17 Business North, US 17 North, SC 179 East, NC 179 East, NC 179 Business East, NC 179 East, US 17 Business North, US 17 North, NC 210 South, NC 133 South
Oak Island to Chapel Hill: NC 133 North, NC 87 North, NC 133 North, I 40 West

Getting There - Chapel Hill to Oak Island

There is a blank BGS on I 40 at Exit 414. There appear to be fewer signs on the route through Castle Hayne for the North Carolina Battleship Memorial. The battleship is supposed to be going to Norfolk for a refit. Perhaps they are taking signs down now.

US 117 and NC 133 used to go right at a Y in Castle Hayne, with NC-132 going left. Now US 117 goes left with NC 132. This is part of the 2002 rerouting of US 117. There is major construction on NC 133 for the I 140 bridge. NC 133 is widened to four lanes with at at least a half cloverleaf with the I 140 bridge which is starting to elevate there. There is a factory exit running into the interchange from the northwest. There are stoplights hung for both sets of ramps. The bridge is a long way from being complete. Perhaps the road from I 40 to NC 133 will be done before the bridge. Where NC 133 crosses the Cape Fear ( and US 117 continued into downtown ) , NC 133 has been rerouted onto a new bridge at right angles to the bank and intersecting with the old bridge at a forty degree angle. The roadway turns onto the north two lanes of the old bridge and crosses. The south two lanes and the entire bridge to the left of the new bridge is under construction. The new bridge aligns with the path of the Smith Creek Parkway, which will eventually connect from the east. It is not clear what the final configuration of the bridge will be.

Day Trip to Fort Fisher

Checked out the end of Independance Boulevard at River Road, which is where the new toll bridge is going to be built. This area is very low, so the bridge is going to have to be very high to get over the State Port Ship traffic and the approaches are going to be miles long. There are reassurance signs for US 117 at the entrance to State Port, but I did not see Begin or End signs.

Next to US 17/74/76 bridge over NC 133 South is a Begin NC 133 South sign. This is an error, because NC-133 starts at NC 120 north of Castle Hayne. NC 133 South exits from US 17/74/76 there and turns left under the bridge. They must have meant that this was the start of this nonmultiplexed section of NC 133 South. The Visitor Center at Brunswick Town State Historic Site has an new walkthrough display similar to one at Fort Fisher.

Day Trip to Myrtle Beach and Calabash

The Visitor Center on US 17 is under construction. There is a trailer in front for travel info.

NC 179 has been rerouted from Calabash to Sunset Beach. The old NC-179 to the Sunset Beach Bridge is now NC 179 Business. NC 179 proper multiplexes with NC-905 for a few miles more now and meets NC 179 Business at the intersection where the true business section of Sunset Beach is. NC 179 Business must be only Business Route that does not serve any significant business. There are a couple of businesses at the Sunset Beach bridge, but there isn’t much. At least that hard left turn that will take you into the Intercoastal if you miss the turn is on the Business route instead of the main road.

Clinched NC 179 Business