Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Take Coastal Expeditions’ Island Cat to the Secluded North End of Bulls Island for a Day of Shelling, Swimming, Birding and Bliss
Awendaw, SC – Coastal Expeditions is sponsoring a special trip to the North End of Bulls Island with special guest Bob Raynor on July 17, 2011 to benefit the Sewee Association. This rarely offered trip brings guests directly to one of the most secluded and pristine beaches in the Lowcountry for shelling, swimming, birding, and a chance to reconnect with nature.
“One of the things I enjoy most is sharing experiences, like Bulls Island, that change the way that a person looks at their environment,” said Chris Crolley, steward of Coastal Expeditions.
The trip begins with a 40-minute naturalist-led boat tour through the saltmarsh estuary. Right now it is loggerhead nesting season so there is a good chance to see a nest or a loggerhead turtle in the estuary on the cruise to Bulls Island. Upon arriving at the North Beach of Bulls Island, Bob Raynor will lead an interpretative walk, discussing the natural and cultural history of Bulls Island and Cape Romain. Guests will be able to explore the beach at their own pace and will be able to visit a shore bird rookery. The North Beach is full of whelks, sand dollars and many other types of shells as well as Native American pottery. Boneyard Beach, one of nature’s most magnificent works of art in the Lowcountry, is a short walk away.
Cape Romain, home of Bulls Island, is one of only two Class One Wilderness Areas on the eastern seaboard and is home to a large population of nesting loggerhead sea turtles, bald eagles, bottlenose dolphins and a staggering 277 species of birds, including rare Red Knots, several species of terns, ospreys, and a plethora of other shore birds. Seven miles of Bulls Island’s beach are part of the longest stretch of undeveloped coastline on the east coast and allow for unparalleled shelling, beach combing and exploring.
The entire ticket price of $40/person will be donated to the Sewee Association. Reservations are required and can be made by calling Coastal Expeditions’ main office at 843-884-7684. Trip options are 10:30 am – 2:30 pm or 12:30 pm – 4:30 pm. Coastal Expeditions recommends bringing a picnic lunch, sunscreen and plenty of water to drink.
Saturday, April 30, 2011
Zach Fischer and I instructed the girls on baiting a couple of crab pots to soak while we paddled out toward Morris Island lighthouse. Snapper and his group were on the tail end of their week long journey of paddling some of the most pristine waters in the coastal southeast, and today they would add another nine miles of paddling to their trip. And what a nine miles it was! The morning was a quiet glide, the air calm and still, the water’s surface like glass, and the silhouette of the lighthouse on the horizon growing bolder as we paddled on. A marsh hen announced high tide during lunch on Rat Island, and we watched dolphins feed in the creek as the tide fell on our way home.
Back at the hill, we pulled the crab pots to find a few big Jimmy blue crabs and three monster stone crabs. Oh the bounty of the estuary! Zach got the steamer going while I popped open a few oysters for some creek-side sushi, and I don’t believe I’ve ever seen oysters disappear quicker. We had certainly worked up quite an appetite.
Several of the group filled their bellies, and even some of the non-seafood lovers shucked a few oysters and cracked some claws. It was the end of a good, long day, and I think we all felt pretty salty and smelly and exhausted, but more than anything we were hungry. Besides, sometimes it’s nice to feel salty and smelly and exhausted after a good long day in a Lowcountry estuary.
Saturday, April 16, 2011
We teamed up with Mount Pleasant Land Conservancy last night to clean up debris in Shem Creek. Kayaking and paddleboarding into the grassy edges, more than 40 volunteers were able to clear the creek of tires, styrofoam, bottles, cans and other trash that had collected.
Thursday, April 7, 2011
Wednesday, March 30, 2011
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
I'm in the middle of a roadtrip from South Carolina to Massachusetts, stopping at the east coast wildlife refuges along the way. Yesterday, I went out to Bull's Island with Captain Wil and I just wanted to say how amazing it was! Wil was incredibly knowledgeable and really charming. He taught us so much on the way out and on the way back. We saw dolphins (and many other animals) on the way there; I've never seen a dolphin! Then there was the island itself, which completely blew me away. I saw 25 or so alligators, a snake, countless birds and I'm speechless about Boneyard Beach. The whole thing was so great I could go home without seeing another refuge and it will still have been worth it.
Thank you to Wil and all of you guys for the trip! I hope I can make it back down here sometime to do it all over again.
All my best,
Thursday, February 24, 2011
The idea of new territory and the adventure of something different brings me to the outdoors time and again. While scouting a trip today on the Ashley River, Zach Fisher and I set our eyes on a piece of winding creek that we had each never seen before. This narrow piece of water that carved through the estuary made the fauna along the bank seem larger than ever. As we rounded the corner and jumped up our first Great Blue Heron of the day it was easy to believe the beautiful bird's wings stretched far beyond six feet.
This was by no means the first time I had seen a Great Blue Heron, however all of a sudden it seemed just a little bit different. The change was where I was paddling. Each new sight brought great fun. We paddled up to a drawbridge for the railroad tracks that created some neat eddies and I decided to film a sweep roll under the bridge.
Coastal Expeditions is blessed with four on water locations along the coast of South Carolina, however our adventures stretch far beyond there. At Coastal one of our favorite things to do is enjoy the gift that is the Francis Marion National Forest. Kayaking on blackwater through Bald Cypress and Tupelo trees for the first time is surreal.
In the following months Coastal Expeditions will be putting on trips that change the scenery. In March join Heidi Champion and I on a tour from our Folly Creek location under the light of a full moon, and then in April discover the treasure of blackwater paddling along the Wambaw.
Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Saturday, February 19, 2011
Friday, February 11, 2011
LOCATION: SHEM CREEK
Last winter, the Charleston Area Convention and Visitors Bureau (CACVB) filmed guides Chris Crolley and Ian Sanchez on Shem Creek as part of their campaign to highlight the best that Charleston has to offer.