Maintenance crews are working to make Coastal Bend beaches accessible

Posted at 7:41 AM, Apr 15, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-15 11:21:29-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Friday, county park leaders expect are beaches will start to get busy ahead of Easter Sunday. This raises some concerns about creating easier access to the beach.

“You’re going hit soft spots, here and there. We do what we can to make it driveable for two-wheel drive vehicles,” said Director of Coastal Parks for Nueces County, Scott Cross.

Nueces County maintains everything from access road 4 all the way to South Padre Island National Seashore. From Whitecap going north to Mustang Island State Park belongs to the City of Christi, and further north is Port Aransas’ jurisdiction. Right now, Cross said crews working for the county are out every day keeping up with the large crowds of people

"Without any rain. These dry conditions and these high winds, it’s hard to keep no soft sand conditions out here,” he said.

Arriving at the beach, you must decide whether to keep driving or to turn around.

“It’s a front wheel drive car and I’m able to come here. There’s only been one time in the past two or three months that I’ve had to turn around,” said beach visitor Diana Somerville. Nueces County and other jurisdictions use the same method of ‘grading’ to clear the drive lane. The National Park Service said that's the process of reshaping the beach and dunes with heavy machinery by moving sand around.

“You want a greater to lesser profile which is the natural profile. It doesn’t have to be super steep, but you want some kind of fall,” said Cross.

That’s something Cross said he has been weary of.

“Not enough and then too much. Too much can flood the drive lane, brings the water table all the way up,” he said.

If you drive on the beach and come across soft sand, his best advice is to keep driving and don't turn your wheels.