Lifeguards are on duty from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. between May 1 and October 31. The Town contractor maintains lifeguard stations* at various locations throughout the summer in addition to ATV and truck patrols. These locations include the following: (updated 6/6/2022)
May 28 through September 5, 2022:
- Caffey’s Inlet
- Sprigtail Drive
- Barrier Island Station
- Schooner Ridge Drive
- Christopher Drive
- Four Seasons
June 18 through August 14, 2022:
- Ocean Pines
- Widgeon Drive
- South Snow Geese
- Dune Road
- Scarborough Lane
- Plover Drive
- Charles Jenkins Lane
*Please note, should conditions on the beach change, stand locations may be shifted. Please check here for any changes or updates. Lifeguards also patrol our beach on ATVs. Please heed words of caution, advisories, and/or the flying of red (no swimming) flags. They are issued for your safety.
Click here for a PDF version of the Beach Rules sign.
Please heed words of caution, advisories, and/or the flying of red (no swimming) flags as they are issued for your safety. Although the Atlantic Ocean may be inviting and look calm, be alert as conditions can change rapidly and there is constant motion beneath the surface.
Take a few precautions before swimming:
- Swim Near A Lifeguard!
- Never swim alone.
- Wait for at least a dozen waves to break, and decide if any one of them are bigger than you would want to ride.
- Non-swimming companions should stay in the sand well above the watermark caused by the biggest wave. Wave wash is deceptively strong and anyone playing in it should be able to swim long enough to await rescue.
- Look for rip currents and strong shore breaks.
- If you have been drinking alcohol stay out of the water. Alcohol can impair your judgement, breathing, coordination, and swimming ability.
- In an electrical storm, give yourself plenty of time to leave the beach and find shelter. Storms approach quickly.
- Do not use flotation devices or rafts as substitutes for swimming ability. Southwesterly winds can push them far from shore.
The Town of Duck does not allow parking along state roads, and there are no public parking areas at beach accesses. Please check with the homeowners’ association for your vacation rental or with your rental company for beach access questions.
Dune walkovers can be fairly elaborate with benches, roofs, stairs, railings, and decking, while others are fairly simple with only decking or sand paths.
Photographs of some dune walkovers within town.
IF RED FLAGS ARE FLYING, DO NOT GO IN THE WATER -- YOU PUT YOURSELF AND LIFEGUARDS AT RISK!
Local safety officials determine when such conditions exist and also make the decision as to when to take the flags down. Conditions may change during the course of the day -- pay attention!
Just because red flags are not posted does not mean the ocean is safe; there is always a risk when swimming or wading in open waters. If you are concerned about the conditions, check with a lifeguard at one of the designated lifeguard stands.
If you are caught in a rip, do NOT try and swim straight back to shore. Swim parallel to shore until you feel the current weaken or let the current take you out until it weakens. Then swim back to shore at a 45-degree angle.
Rip Current Sign
For additional information on rip current safety, please visit:
National Weather Service Rip Current Awareness
National Weather Service Local Forecast
If you are interested in working for the Town’s Surf Rescue contractors, visit their website.