Oak Island Light

Oak Island Light
Oak Island Light
Oak Island Lighthouse 07.30.2001.jpg
Oak Island Light
Location Oak Island, Cape Fear River, North Carolina
Year first constructed 1958
Year first lit 1958
Construction Portland concrete
Tower shape Round
Markings / pattern Bottom third of tower grey, second third white, third one black.
Height 169 feet
Current lens DCB-436 Aerobeacon
Range 20 miles
Characteristic Four flashes every 6 seconds.
Admiralty number J2470
ARLHS number USA-558
USCG number 2-0810

The Oak Island Lighthouse is currently part of the United States Coast Guard station on Oak Island in North Carolina.


Being completed in 1958, the Oak Island Lighthouse is one of the newest lighthouses in the United States. It is made from concrete and stands 169 feet (51.5 m) tall. It replaced the Cape Fear Lighthouse, a steel skeleton lighthouse near Cape Fear on Bald Head Island. (That lighthouse was demolished afterwards to avoid confusion.) The lighthouse marks the mouth of the Cape Fear River with the second most powerful beacon in the world, only surpassed by a French lighthouse along the English Channel. It can be seen for 19 miles, which is needed to help ships avoid the dangerous Frying Pan Shoals.

The characteristic flashing pattern for the light is four one-second flashes every 10 seconds The heat given off by the light is so intense that workers must wear protective clothing in order to do repairs. Even then, they are only able to work on it for a short time. It has become the symbol for Oak Island and can be seen on many of the souvenirs sold there.

The top third of the lighthouse is black; the middle third is white, while the bottom third is grey. These colors are not painted on the structure, having instead been mixed into the concrete at the time the tower was constructed.[1]


Oak Island Lighthouse from the air

The Oak Island Lighthouse was recently designated as surplus by the Coast Guard (though it intends to continue operating the beacon). The town of Caswell Beach was recently given ownership of the lighthouse and adjacent oceanfront property by the Federal Government in return for its agreement to maintain the property for parks and recreation purposes. The lighthouse is open Wednesdays and Saturdays 10 A.M. - 2 P.M. for limited tour. Tours to the top must be scheduled in advance.


Coordinates: 33°53′34″N 78°02′06″W / 33.892900°N 78.035100°W / 33.892900; -78.035100

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