The next North Carolina Challenge is
Friday, October 14, 2016. There are two concurrent events, the roughly 300 mile BlackBeard Challenge (BBC) and the roughly
90 mile Challenge (NCC). Both events finish at the same time, but they start at
different times. Be sure you check the schedule for the correct event! There is a mandatory
equipment inspection and captains meeting the day before on Thursday, October 13, 2016. Refer to the schedule
for time/date specifics.
NCC cost is $195.00
for the captain and $195.00 for
a crew member if any.
Monday, August 01, 2016.
Saturday, August 20, 2016
Payment deadline is
Saturday, August 20, 2016
Due to the exteme commitment for this challenge late registration and/or late payments
will not be allowed. We recommend that you commit to this race early so you have
plenty of time for planning, training, and preparation. Pay early in the payment
cycle. You can get a full refund up until
Saturday, August 20, 2016
at noon. No refunds after that date and time.
All WaterTribe events are dangerous events as defined by law and common sense. You
are responsible for your own safety. You must read and understand
Rules and Warnings
before you register for this event. Although the warnings read
specific to Florida, they all apply to the NC environment and must be read and understood
for this event.
The NCC distance is roughly
90-100 miles depending on your course selection. This challenge
is a circular race in a counter-clockwise direction with start and finish at the
same location at Don Lee Camp and Retreat. You must checkin at the Cedar Island CP. There is an overall
maximum time limit of approximately 2 days.
Please take a special look at the deadlines for this event. The North Carolina Challenge is intended to
be done at an Ultra Marathon pace. The deadlines are tougher than for the BBC which is a much longer challenge.
At an average speed of 3.5 knots it will take about 16 hours to get to CP1. The deadline gives you 26.5 hours
so there is some cushion, but not much especially if you encounter conditions that reduce your speed. As always, we
will make allowances for foul weather. Just remember, it's intended to be an Ultra Marathon pace.
NCC2015 Tracking Map
The link above will take you to the tracking map which is the best way to view the course.
Note: The table includes waypoints for both the BlackBeard Challenge (BBC) and
the North Carolina Challenge (NCC).
The only route requirements are that the race be run counter-clockwise, through
the Harlowe Canal and the Thorofare, with a stop at the checkpoint at Cedar Island. All
other navigational decisions are up to each challenger. The course will have participants
experiencing parts of North Carolina’s Neuse River, Newport River, Taylor’s Creek,
Back Sound, Core Sound, Pamlico Sound and many of the Bays in “down eastern” North
When waypoints are shown on the tracking map, you must follow that course as shown. Typically they are there to force a filter. The waypoints are shown as general guidelines for the course. They are not intended for navigation.
The Harlowe canal is required. Options will be discussed at the captains meeting if there are blockages in the canal.
The Thorofare is required.
Be careful with your course selection from CP1 to the finish.
There are restricted areas along the route. You must mark these areas on your charts and be well aware of their location and rules. Some of these areas are used for bombing, shelling, and strafing practice. Be sure to chart a course that leaves plenty of room for these areas.
The NCC and BBC are run as an unsupported, expedition-style adventure races for
kayaks, canoes and small boats. Your safety and well being are completely up to
you. You should be an expert kayaker and/or sailor before you
consider this challenge. Although this event is not an open ocean race, the
location is coastal, subject to the same weather patterns and conditions one finds
beyond the narrow barrier islands and impacting the shallow sounds.
Unsupported means that there are no safety boats or support crews to help you during
the race. You are not allowed to have a support crew follow you or meet you during
the race. It is okay to have family or friends meet you at the official checkpoint,
but they cannot provide anything other than emotional support. See the official
WaterTribe Rules for more details.
Expedition-style means that you should carry the same type of equipment and supplies
that you would carry on a major expedition. Camping equipment, food, water, safety,
communication means, etc. is required. Please read the WaterTribe Challenge Equipment
List (in the Rules PDF), which details required equipment for a Challenge. Please choose your equipment needs carefully. Everyone must also carry all safety
equipment as specified by the Coast Guard, local regulations and common sense.
In addition, all boats in this challenge are also required to carry a SPOT device
with or without the tracking feature. Please read the instructions for Spot Setup and Usage
for WaterTribe events.
Although this is a race, many participants are more interested in cruising and adventure.
Whether you are a cruiser or racer is up to you; time allows for both. Just getting
to the starting line is a major accomplishment, and many starters will not finish.
2009 NCC finishers made up only 53% of the starters.
A banquet lunch and award ceremony will take place Sunday at 10:30
at the Don Lee Dining Hall.
You basically have four choices for accommodations during these NC events:
The cabins have four or five rooms per cabin with 8 bunks per room. The cabins do not have restrooms. They do
have a common room with table and they have screened porch with rocking chairs.
Tent sites are grassy and there is plenty of shade.
There are two common restrooms with showers. One is very large and accomodates many people and of course it is
split between men and women. The other is much smaller with showers and is also split for men and women.
There is a parking fee, but WaterTribe is paying for all parking for the duration of the events. You can have
your car on site for the duration whether or not you have a cabin or tent. If you have an RV, you can move it
to a parking area if you don't want to pay for the site while you are out paddling or sailing.
This event is planned to be family and friends friendly. We will have many suggestions
of activities for your guests during the Challenges. Friends and family are invited
to the banquet (for a small lunch fee). Please indicate any additional numbers on
your reservation form.
Pictures and reservation form coming soon.
Weather and sea conditions including current and historical data can be found at
Registration, Waivers, Float Plans -
Thursday, October 13, 2016
Is Mandatory .
Gear Inspection -
Thursday, October 13, 2016
Is Mandatory .
NCC Race -
Friday, October 14, 2016 to
Sunday, October 16, 2016.
Both the BlackBeard Challenge (BBC) and the NC Challenge (NCC) start and finish on the beach
at the Don Lee Camp and Retreat on the north side of the Neuse River. Boats should be assembled,
packed, and left on the beach above the high water mark on inspection day. There will be plenty of
parking at the campground to leave cars and trailers during the challenges.
Please Note: Although these events start and finish at the same location,
the start dates are different. The finish dates are the same.
Inspection day for the BBC is Saturday.
Inspection day for the NCC is Thursday.
There is a Captains meeting at 15:00 on Inspection Day for both events. Attendance is mandatory.
NOTE: If you arrive late and give us notice of your late arrival, you may still participate.
As long as you complete gear inspection and check in with a race official before you launch
you can still enter. Your time however, will not be adjusted for a late start.
The route starts by crossing the Neuse River and entering Clubfoot Creek and the
The Harlowe canal is the required route and is entered thru Clubfoot Creek off
the Neuse River, and is the old original Intracoastal Waterway (ICW), located west
of the current ICW, connecting the Neuse River with the Morehead City and Beaufort
waterfronts. Known locally as the Slave Canal because it was deepened to five or
six feet by slave labor, the Harlowe is one of the oldest canals in the United Sates,
originally created untold centuries ago by Indians who dragged their canoes across
the lowlands to the Neuse.
The canal is narrow but deep enough for most boats (but take care with the shallow twists and turns
entering and exiting the canal), with three bridges that will require the sailboats
to step their masts. Beautiful and tree-lined, the Western side of the canal is
part of the Croatan National Forest. There is some tidal influence on the southern
side and from wind effects on the Neuse.
The CP is at the eastern end of North Bay on Cedar Island. It is a boat ramp, house and parking lot
near the Islands Choice convenience store on Hwy 12 at the end of Ditch Path Road.
You must be a WaterTribe Member to register for an event.
I am already a member:
I am not a member yet:
You must be a WaterTribe Member to register for an event or setup your SPOT Link.