Driving down NC Highway 12 from the Hatteras ferry, the first bridge you will come to (just past the pony pen) is the span over Try Yard Creek, one of six narrow tidal creeks that connect with Pamlico Sound. All of the creeks are almost certainly remnants of long-ago inlets. Ocracoke Inlet is the only inlet on the Outer Banks that has remained open since Europeans began keeping records.
At one time there was a modest whaling industry on the Outer Banks. From 1726 until 1875 New England whalers ventured to North Carolina in February, March and April, hunting the giant cetaceans off shore. Local fishermen were more likely to concentrate on the occasional beached whale, although for a while longboats were launched through the surf to pursue whales. Once brought to shore, the blubber was boiled in large "try pots" to render the fat into oil.
Try Yard Creek was named after the nearby area that was once used for trying whale blubber.
Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of the Rondthalers of Ocracoke Island. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news032112.htm.