BUXTON, N.C. — A new island was discovered off the North Carolina coast and officials are warning people to not swim there.
The Virginian-Pilot reported that the Cape Hatteras National Seashore and emergency officials are advising people to use kayaks or paddle boards after several swimmers had to be rescued.
The new island appeared in the ocean almost overnight along the state’s Cape Hatteras National Seashore. Waters are deep and the current is strong.
Spotted by eagle-eyed locals on the ground — and photographed by Chad Koczera — the sandbank has grown from tiny isle to large land mass.
Now visitors are braving the waters to explore this new addition to the shoreline.
Some have nicknamed the isle “Shelly island,” visitor Janice Regan told The Virginian Pilot.
Apparently it’s the perfect spot to collect seashells.
Koczera, vacationing in the area with his fiancee, was also on the hunt for shells when he spotted the island.
“We originally headed that way to collect shells after a storm,” Koczera tells CNN Travel.
The photographer spotted the mysterious island, but realized he couldn’t access it by foot.
“So I sent my drone up to check it out,” he says.
Koczera was rewarded with spectacular photos of this sandy island.
The island is roughly one mile long and located in surfing hotspot Cape Point.
“Travel to the sandbar is best accomplished by experienced kayakers or paddleboarders that are using appropriate floatation and mindful of the strong currents in the area,” Dave Hallac, superintendent of the Cape Hatteras National Seashore, told CNN Travel:
Hallac also told The Virginian Pilot that Cape Point’s shoreline is constantly changing.
The island could disappear as quickly as it arrived.
But in the meantime, locals and visitors alike can enjoy the ever-changing Cape coastline, as long as they take the necessary precautions.