A Travellerspoint blog

Day 109 - Hunting Island and Penn School (Photo's Added)

We stayed at Hunting Island a little longer to climb the lighthouse (me anyway) and enjoy the beach. Then we visited Penn School, the first school opened in the South after the Civil War for freed slaves

sunny 65 °F

Logistics:

Miles Driven - 54
Weather - Clear & Sunny, Low to mid 60's
Camped at - Walmart in outskirts of Savannah

Musings:

Why isn't high speed internet more widely available???

Again, I am out of time. It is a little frustrating - we would have liked to stay at Hunting Island much longer, just like a lot of other places we've been on this trip. When I dreamed up the idea of an 8 month RV trip, I thought we'd have so much free time we'd be bored. Instead this seems sometimes like we're just scratching the surface.

Narrative:

It was so beautiful this morning, just like something out of a dream (or Gilligan's Island, without all the wierd people). We walked out on the beach, picked up shells and met interesting folks. While I was wandering around and splashing in the water, Mom met a couple from Austria that were also RV'ing around the US. They have vacationed in many other parts of the world and collected sand from all of them! Here is how close our campsite was to the beach (my RV is the one on the right). The low dunes are man made, they are trying to stabilize the island from erosion (a loosing effort).

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More beach photo's. Mom wanted to get farther south for the winter, we aren't in Florida yet, but this sure looks nice to me.

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The protected sides of the island (away from the open Atlantic Ocean) had salt marshes, egrets and oyster beds.

Day_109_-_Oyster_Beds.jpg

Hunting Island has the only public lighthouse in South Carolina that you can climb, so I climbed it, all 167 steps. It also had a first order Fresnel lens, so I was really looking forward to seeing this. However, what it has mostly is the lens housing (metal frame), the only glass left it the top section. Still it gives you an idea how big the thing is. When I got done climbing, Mom and the park ranger were sitting on a bench at the bottom chatting. It was so nice, we were tempted to never leave.

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The island is also home to a maritime forest. One of the park signs said that the reason the mature trees are so close to the beach is because of erosion. The forest was an interesting mix of salt tolerant evergreens and palmettos. Very beautiful. It is also home to deer (which we didn't see) and lots of birds.

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We finally started back to the mainland, afraid if we didn't we never would. The only way to get back to the mainland is to drive through St. Helena Island. Until the bridge was built, this was very isolated and so has preserved more of the Gullah culture then most other area's. It is also the location of Penn Center, which was started as the first school opened in the South for freed slaves. The school was closed after public schools came to St. Helena Island and is now used as a museum. No photography was allowed inside again...

Day_109_-_Penn_Center.jpg

We watched a very good film on the Gullah culture and music, I would have purchased it but thought $35 was a bit high. I spent enough on books to make up for it though. Most of the rest of the museum was about the school and it's history, not as much Gullah history as the other store/museum we went to near Georgetown. However, there were quite a few good books in the gift shop.

Outside of the Museum, the tree's were covered with Spanish Moss. Mom couldn't resist just one more picture...

Day_109_-_..sh_Moss.jpg

Between dragging our feet to get off the beach and spending the rest of the afternoon at Penn Center - we didn't have much time left for Savannah. As we approached Savannah, I decided to pull over at a local WM to get a good rest for the night, so we can hit Savannah in the morning ready to explore.

Posted by jl98584 19:49 Archived in USA Tagged family_travel

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