The Outer Banks are a bow shaped string of barrier islands sitting in offshore isolation from the North Carolina coast. These low-lying strips of sand appeared less than a 1000 years ago, a result of the merger of the cold Labrador Current from the north and the warm Gulf Stream from the south. This fusion has produced miles of shifting beachbreaks on these migrating islands whose width never exceeds 3 miles (5km). The constant movement of both the islands and the offshore sandbanks of the Diamond Shoals, has earned the Outer Banks a reputation as 'The Graveyard of the Atlantic' with more than 2000 ships sunk in these waters since 1526. The Outer Banks are well exposed to all types of East Coast swell, and the dozens of piers provide some protection from wind and cross-shore drift. When it's happening, there are full on, beachbreak barrels to be had, which are not short of power.