May 1997

Dear SCAN members,

The April SCAN trip was to the 2300 acre Anne Springs Close Greenway near Fort Mill, SC. The weather was overcast for the entire day but only a few sprinkles occurred to dampen the spirits of the 18 SCAN members enjoying this wonderful area. Several new members and infrequent attendees were among the group. Birds were active all day, spring flowers were out in abundance, and the bug and beetle people found much to enjoy. The 1.3 mile long “Lake Haigler Nature Trail” had sufficient diversity to keep the group busy for almost the entire day. The day ended with a walk across scenic Steele Creek on a “swinging bridge” that lived up to its name when it was traversed.

See the Anne Springs Close Greenway Flora/Fauna List

Fifteen of the day’s participants met in a seafood restaurant in Rock Hill at the end of the day for a good dinner, fellowship, and lots of laughs.

Special thanks are in order for Charlie Williams, the Northern Regional Director, for a well planned trip.

Ken Boni, President

SECRETARY’S NOTE: It was brought to my attention that no formal mention was made of Sam Outen’s death in early March. I apologize. The March newsletter was mailed a few hours before his passing, and by April I assumed I had included the information in the March letter. Sam was a faithful SCAN member, always willing to offer help. When he took responsibility for the refreshments for the annual meeting, we had homemade rolls and biscuits! Sam generously remembered SCAN in his will, so, in due course, we will have a new publication to commemorate a loyal member!

Brasstown Creek Heritage Preserve
Oconee County
May 24, 1997

The May fieldtrip will take us to the western edge of the state in Oconee County. The Brasstown Creek Heritage Preserve, surrounded by Sumter National Forest and near the Tugaloo River where it is the state line between South Carolina and Georgia, protects a nationally significant botanical area. Along the ridgetop is a Pitch Pine Heath community, slightly lower is the oak-hickory forest, then the moist hardwood cove forest. Among the plants that are rare in South Carolina are Turkey-beard, which is found in the xeric areas, Piedmont Strawberry, Southern Nodding Trillium, Rough Sedge, and a rare species of Pinesap. The Pitch Pine Heath is a rocky ridgetop community of dry sandy or rocky soils with Pitch Pine (Pinus rigida), and a heath understory. Getting to this plant community may be a challenge. There are no developed trails on the preserve. We will prowl the edge of the road and ‘bushwhack’ where we want to go (gently, of course).

Getting There (See the Map)

Getting there may not be half the fun but we will persevere. You may choose your own route to Westminster, although your secretary suggests considering I-85 to SC 24 and then north to Westminster. Follow US 123 through Westminster and head southwest toward Toccoa, Ga. Starting from the intersection in Westminster of US 76 and 123 drive 7.2 miles and take a right onto Cleveland Pike (SR 160) (which is only 0.5 miles after you cross the Chauga River bridge). Continue on Cleveland Pike for 5.7 miles and turn right onto Barton Creek Road. Drive 1.7 miles on Barton Creek Road and turn right onto Cooper Road which is dirt and gravel and parallels the Tugaloo River. Drive about 2.5 miles on Cooper Road passing the Tugaloo Environmental Education Center (TEEC). There is no ‘parking area’; instead we will park on the side of Cooper Road in a wide spot. DO NOT BLOCK THE ROAD. Caution: Cooper Road is subject to washouts and the entire area may be very slick and extremely muddy depending on either recent weather or on the river level which is controlled by dams.