Monday, February 08, 2016


Here is an idea that seemed promising at the time, but never "took off." In 1970 a Raleigh business, Variety Vacations and Sports Enterprises, introduced the new idea of using hovercraft on the Outer Banks. "Able to travel on both land and water," the hovercraft was demonstrated for the curious in Roanoke Sound. Hovercraft use blowers to produce a large volume of air below the hull that is slightly above atmospheric pressure, which lifts the vessel above any flat surface.

I couldn't find a picture of a 1970 hovercraft, but located this one of a recent hovercraft in operation in Germany.

Photo by Stoaberg (Wikipedia)

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is about islanders who worked on the water, and lost their lives at sea. You can read the Newsletter here:


  1. Anonymous4:44 PM

    I use to go to hovercraft races in Pa. They race across a parking lot down to the water and smoothly go in. They then went around a series of turns, back across gravel and mud then the parking lot over and over. If you think a NASCAR race is loud think again. These things sound like airplanes taking off and are even louder on open water. They scream. Nothing can exist with out earplugs around these things. Count your blessings that they didn't use them on the outerbanks. Ask any marine who has ridden on one. NOT FUN!

  2. thanks for sharing with us. really cool