Hilton Head Island and Charleston area S.C.

Hilton Head Island Beach
On the road again.  We spent a couple of weeks at home to catch up on mail, and touch base with friends and family, following the European getaway and the short trip to Costa Rica.  This time we are back in the RV, headed along the southeastern coast.  Even though we have been up and down the eastern seaboard countless times through the years, we have never taken time to stop at Hilton Head Island.  Known for its championship golf courses, tennis (300 courts on this tiny island!), 50-miles of bike and walking trails and a 12-mile beach, it seemed that a visit here was overdue.

Bluffton Oyster Company
With the hard-packed sand on the beach, we were able to bike a good portion of the waterfront, and then moved over to the trails.  I'm sure we did nowhere near the full 50-miles, but most of the areas were cloaked in shade from the countless oak trees along our route, and on this post-Labor Day ride, the trail was not crowded.  With rain in the forecast, we only spent one night but managed to stock up on seafood for the next few evenings.  Locating the Bluffton Oyster Company along the waterfront, we scored fresh flounder, shrimp, oysters, mussels and some of the best crab meat we have had in a long time. (check out our dinner here-  Crab Meat Salad )

Pier at James Island County Park near Charleston
Rain followed us up the coast to Charleston, but we had a few hours of sunshine the morning after our arrival.  Camping in the James Island County Park, we took advantage of their extensive bike trail to explore the park.  At 643- acres, this large park offers a wonderful diversity of activities for visitors, including a large dog park for the furry guests.  We bypassed on the climbing wall and the splash park, but the campground also offers kayaking, crabbing and fishing opportunities.  Located just a few miles from the center of Charleston, this was a perfect stopping point.

While exploring the general Charleston area, we discovered Kiawah Island, and 'strand feeding' Atlantic Bottlenose dolphins.  These dolphins feed along the Kiawah River, creeks and inlets, in a manner unique to coastal regions in South Carolina and Georgia.  A group of dolphins herd a school of fish or shrimp to the water's edge and toss them up onto the shore.  The dolphins then launch their bodies onto the shore to feed.  I missed getting a picture of this but the video here shows how they do it.

Unfortunately, the weather has not been cooperating.  Rain, rain and more rain continue to put a damper on our attempts at outdoor activities.  We're going to continue heading north.  Planning on a few weeks in the Chesapeake Bay region.

There were tens of thousands of these crabs along the grass flats.

Morris Island Lighthouse on Folly Beach near Charleston

Shrimp boats offshore at Folly Beach

Morris Head Lighthouse

Sweet grass baskets at the Charleston Market

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