Monday, November 12, 2007

Southern Hospitality

The trip south has been full of wonderful surprises. In Beaufort, North Carolina there are wild horses on the barrier islands. The locals will tell you they swam ashore from Spanish Galleons that ran aground 100 of years ago....ha ha. The real story is not as romantic so we'll stick with the Spanish Galleon story. The horses don't mind having their picture taken but they do bite and kick so it is wise to not try and ride them.

Some very friendly people we met along the way live in Beaufort. They invited us and another couple from Oregon for dinner at their home and later showed us their favorite watering hole. Steve is telling Chennie, from Hood Canal OR, his favorite boat story.

John telling Anne a tale. Don't believe it!

We can usually find a place to anchor our boat. Marinas are nice but pricey. The going rate in this part of the world is $1.75-$2.00/ft. of boat length. In addition you get charged a flat daily rate for power, usually $5-10 dollars. Anchoring is free. Here we are anchored in Taylor Creek in Beaufort. The tide changes every 6 hours and the boat swings back and forth with the tide. There is not much room for swinging so you have to make sure the boat is just in the middle of the creek or you will have a close encounter with the homeowners dock.

Next big city stop was Charleston, South Carolina. This is a fabulous city to walk in. There is American history everywhere and the locals are in true character of "southern ladies and gents".

There are many churches

There are beautiful old estates that depict a world of beauty and elegance. Mint Julep anyone?

There are approximately 14 barrier islands along the coast of South Carolina and Georgia. Many of these islands are un-inhabited. Some islands are not much more than large sand dunes but some are exotic gems. One such place is Daufuskie Island. Located just south of Hilton Head, Daufuskie basks undiscovered by the masses and commercial ventures. We are fortunate to know Jim and Maria who make this island their home and invited us to visit with them for a few days.

The locals have golf carts not cars.

The beaches are magnificent.

Among the beautiful estates you can still find some relics from years gone by. The winery was closed for the day.

An old house in the woods.

Dolphins are everywhere and seem to enjoy swimming alongside and under the boat.

Jekyll Island was our next stop. This barrier island used to be the private retreat for some of America's wealthiest families. Grand cottages and this Victorian clubhouse was the winter getaway for such notable families as the Rockefellers, Pulitzers, Morgans and Vanderbilts. Regular people like us can now enjoy a great breakfast buffet at the "Millionaires Club".

Jekyll Island is all about the beach

And bike riding on nearly deserted island trails.

Next stop was Cumberland Island, Georgia's largest and southernmost barrier island. The Carnegie family owned and lived on this island from the late 1800 until recently when the land and buildings were donated to the National Park Foundation. A small portion of the island is still privately owned but people are free to visit. There are no bridges, you can only access the island by boat. There is lots of wildlife here including this very noisy Woodpecker.

Anchoring is not a problem and there is lots of company.

It is easy to fall in love with this beautiful place.

Next stop is Florida. A different world.

Anne and Steve