The golf carts were too much for me – I just couldn't handle all that cruisin' going on. We moved farther northeast to a state park called Sesque-Centennial. It took me three days to figure out how to say the name of this park. Really a nice state park, lots of trees and space between the sites. I was in Site #36 (just in case I ever come back, it is good to note a good campsite)
The main reason to come here is to give Lou a chance to also become a Junior Ranger. She has the opportunity to do it big time because we aren't going to some little monument or historical park. We are going to a "National Park". Congaree is the only National Park in South Carolina. It was established in 2003.
Congaree is “the largest tract of old-growth hardwoods in North America. Located in the floodplain of the Congaree and Wateree rivers, the park is known for its outsized trees – loblolly pines, oaks, cypress, hickory, tupelo and bald cypress – that form one of the highest canopies in the world.” from Chimani website.
Since this park is in a floodplain and floods all the time, the park has built a 2 ½ mile long boardwalk. Best part is that we got to take Miko along for a boardwalk walk. Before we started out though, we had to pick up our Junior Ranger workbooks and also had to watch the short movie on the park. Dogs are not allowed in the building so I was just going to wait outside while Davey and Lou watched the movie. All of a sudden, Davey is sneaking Miko and me into the back of the theater. Sometimes his philosophy of asking forgiveness instead of asking for permission pays off. Miko was cool and very inconspicuous, she lay down with her head under one of the chairs. As the end credits rolled, Miko and I snuck out under the cover of darkness.
After checking the Mosquito Meter, we headed out on the boardwalk. Lots of big trees, lots of cypress knees, lots of brackish looking water, lots of upturned ground where the wild pigs had dug up. Lou read to us from the informational brochure so we were well educated.
|The Boardwalk and yes, it was as tilty as it looks|
|There are Water Tupelos - their bases swell with water when it floods - the moss shows how high the water gets|
Then the day turned on us. Part of the boardwalk was closed so we had to go across country. We missed the turnoff that we were supposed to take and ended up walking through some trails that seemed to go on and on forever and forever. Davey was calling it a death march. There were some other lost souls on the trail and there were other people on the trail who claimed to know where they were, but it was all lies.
We eventually decided to turn around and retrace our steps back to familiar territory. We finally saw a couple of park rangers in their natural habitat who helped us get back to the visitor center. I think we were out there for about four hours when it should have only been an hour and half. All is well though - Lou got her first Junior Ranger badge. We rolled on home, put our feet up and celebrated the fact that we had survived.
|Notice Lou's shiny badge|