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Have you Seen the F Code?

Oregon Inlet Campground                                                                          Most Recent Posts:
Cape Hatteras National Seashore                                                            
Atlantic Florida to Atlantic N.C.
Nags Head, North Carolina                                                                        Sweetwater Confusion
Tuesday April 24, 2018- Friday April 27, 2018

Turns out I’m the beneficiary of the road work being done in Charlottesville that will not allow Winnona to go back to her usual parking place.  Since she can’t go but David has to go for his medical appointments we stopped at Oregon Inlet Campground on Monday and I’ll hang out here while he goes back to the farm.   If you have to stay somewhere, might as well be at a Seashore right?


Unfortunately his one day at the beach is full of rain coming down in buckets with winds you wouldn’t want to be outside in even without the rain..  Here’s the view from the window.  That’s the view all day long.  Winds so strong we have to bring in the slides. This is getting to be a habit I’m not crazy about!.

I take him up to Charlottesville so I’ll have a car while I’m here for three weeks.  I return on Thursday and Winnona has been fine while I’ve been gone but shortly after I get back something happens. 

We are boondocking – no utilities so we’re getting electricity from our solar panels and relying on the propane for hot water and the refrigerator.  The F Code light come on our Norcold 822 refrigerator.  That’s a code meaning failure to light.  I turn the fridge off, wait a few minutes, turn it back on and everything seems OK.  I’m blessed that this did not happen while I was gone or I would have had a freezer full of thawed food.  But this code business does continue with regularity.  Every night at some point the code comes on which means the fridge is not on.  Every morning I turn the refrigerator off and then turn it back on, it’s fine all day.  Anyone ever seen this or have any ideas what it might be?   Remember this is propane not electricity.

OK so back to what I’m doing while I’m not worrying about the refrigerator.

On Thursday the skies are clear and the wind is some lighter, enough that I can walk down to the beach on the path that’s just behind our site.   It’s a bit of a walk across the dunes.  Up and down in soft sand.  Good workout for the legs.  Love that it’s right out my back door.  I don’t have to drive anywhere to take a walk on the beach. 





Looking back at Winnona before going down onto the beach I can see Route 12, which is the only road through the National Seashore.  On the other side of it is the Coast Guard Station and beyond that Palmlico Sound. 


Down on the beach, the waves are nice thanks to the wind and the shells are many.   Mostly clam and oyster.




As I walk along the shore, I see many other things.  Like what I think is a Puffer fish.  Can you fishermen corroborate or correct?




I love groups of pelicans flying by and can’t resist taking pictures of them especially on a blue sky day.


Do you see them in this picture?


One day, by walking south on the beach I was thinking perhaps I could walk around to the sound.  I know I’d have to cross the road but I didn’t think about the fact that there is a ton of construction on the new bridge going over the Oregon Inlet.  That’s what all the cranes and beep beep back up noises are that intrude on the beauty and quiet of the beach.  Several folks have said they plan to come to Oregon Inlet in 2019 so I hope this activity will be finished by then.



I head back North and spend some time watching this sandpiper and eventually his friends who fly in.


Found something yummy it appears.


He hurries off to join the others.


Don’t they look like they should start a line dance routine?


That’s only my first walk on the beach.  I go out every morning, usually at sunrise unless the winds are just tooooo much.  It’s much more windy here than I was expecting. 

Some days it rains through my sunrise but I can get out a little later.  I love being able to see out my window what the sun is doing.


This day the sun has to try really hard.  Still this is one of my favorite shots.


With or without the sun the beach walkers are always here.  It’s pretty much me and the birds beach combing.   Not sure I’ve seen any other people walking the beach other than me.  Most folks on this beach unfortunately (IMO) arrive by truck or SUV.


Of course the Sanderlings fly in.  I would too if I could.


IMG_1980Much to my dismay, the National Seashore in North Carolina allows driving on the beach with an ORV permit.  I understand this is a money making project given that the permits are $50 for 10 days and $120 for 1 year.  From what I’ve seen in the time I’ve been here this goes beyoned “recreation” which they claimed when I asked was one of the “missions” of the National Park Service.  During the week it isn’t too bad but on the week-ends, forget the beach if you are on foot.

Early in the morning during the week is as good as it gets.  At that point, the high tide has cleaned up the beach and the tire tracks and ruts are few.  For sure you don’t want to even bother with the beach on the week-ends. 

Friday afternoon I think I’ll go visit the Bodie Island Lighthouse, one of 4 on the Outer Banks and just over a mile from the campground.d  You can actually see it from Winnona.  It’s only late April, not the week-end yet so I’m not expecting the place to be packed.

IMG_1990But I”m wrong.  When I get there I find the parking lot full, cars parking on the grass and along the entry road including 3 bus loads of people.   I drive through the parking lot and figure I’ll try again tomorrow even though it’s Saturday.  Nobody will be there at 9am when the lighthouse opens.  Will they?

I’ll close this post with the opening topic.  Hope some of you have some suggestions about my Norcold F code.

Next up the Bodie Island Lighthouse with a lot fewer people.


  1. The beach is very appealing, and the company is welcome!

  2. I hate beaches that allow vehicles. It just ruins the peacefulness.
    Sorry, we have a Dometic fridge. Hope it's an easy fix.

  3. We experienced the failure to light on our last outing. I replaced the gas solenoid and that did the trick. Hope yours is as simple a fix.

  4. This has to stop...our Fridge went out just before we left for PA:o(( The high heat sensor shut it down. So we had to empty it until we return from PA. So on Tuesday, when we get back, the repairman is coming and we probably need a new fridge!!! Hope your fix is an easy one. In the meantime, enjoy your time at the beach:o))

  5. We were in the OBX in April a few years ago and I was surprised at the crowds everywhere we went ... I was thinking low season would be more peaceful.

  6. Google F code, there is a good bit of info there. Major cause is dirty burner orifice, which can be solved by cleaning or replacement. I had this happen and when I opened the little door to look at the burner, I found it was jammed full of dead stink bugs. Cleaned them out and it has worked well ever since (knock on wood).

  7. We're going to be there earlier in April so I expect the same kind of weather. Hopefully the bridge construction will be done. I've read on their website they are adding electric to the park this summer. Good luck with fridge.

  8. Beautiful beach and birds! Neat how the tide smooths it all out overnight. I, too, hope the fridge is an easy fix and the winds let up some! Enjoy the beachfront! Lucky duck!! :)

  9. Beautiful days at the beach. I hope you figure out the refrigerator. We have a Dometic so I am no help at all.

  10. Hope Paul's suggestion fixed your problem. I hate to see vehicles on the beach too. Here in CA, southern mostly, they allow vehicles, RV's, all that. Tears up the dunes :(

  11. I don't understand bringing in the slides during high wind. Never have. Lighting the refrigerator requires electricity. Had that problem with inadequate sunshine charging the battery. Agree to Google the code. The awesome thing about storms is all the treasures brought to the beach. Gorgeous morning shot with the crepuscular rays through the clouds. How fortunate to have this view and walk to the shore. Plus some alone time.

  12. That is a bummer that the National Seashore allows vehicles on the beach. :-( It definitely ruins the peacefulness. The beach is beautiful — I hope you have plenty of wonderful walks and calm days ahead. And I hope your fridge turns out to be an easy fix. Love the sandpiper conga line. :-) And yes, looks like a puffer fish to me.

  13. Gorgeous beach. The birds are wonderful - love the lined up dancers :-) Your favorite shot is definitely a keeper. It looks so very peaceful.

  14. It is always interesting what you can find on the beach:)

  15. That's a heck of a ride from Charlottesville....Looks pretty chilly there. Can't say that about Texas, already hot here. Always fun to explore an empty beach.


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