April 1998

April 6, 1998

Dear SCAN members,

The 15 SCAN members that visited Myrtle Beach State Park on March 28 were treated to a very interesting and varied site. This state park opened in 1936 and except for a brief period during WW II has been open to the public ever since. In addition to an extensive beach, there is much wooded area as well as regions of transition between the beach and maritime woods.

It was really great to see Alex Ciegler on this trip. He has made a miraculous recovery from surgery for colon cancer that was performed in early February.

The morning was spent walking along a Nature Trail through the woods that starts at the Nature Center. Spring flowers were out and many of the trees were leafing out. Although it was a beautiful warm day, the trail was virtually deserted allowing the participants undisturbed opportunity to identify the abundant flora and fauna along the trail. The afternoon was spent walking the extensive beach, highlighted by a close look at a cooperative flock of ruddy turnstones.

See the Flora/Fauna List

Special thanks are due to Julie Finlayson and Sandy Elliott, our Eastern Regional Directors, for planning and leading this trip.

Ken Boni, President

April 25 & 26

Have we got a special treat for our April overnight! We’ll spend two days exploring the coastal environment, including a Saturday afternoon boat trip to Morgan Island, or “Monkey Island” as it’s commonly referred to by the locals. Best of all, we’ll be accompanied by Dr. Ed Ruppert of Clemson University, literally “the man who wrote the book” on seashore creatures of the Southeast. Some of you met Ed at our annual meeting where he was our guest speaker, and others may be familiar with the excellent field guide Seashore Animals of the Southeast, which he wrote with Richard Fox.

SATURDAY: We will meet at 10:30 on Saturday at the entrance to the dock at the Beaufort Downtown Marina. Here we’ll spend an hour or so investigating the critters on the floating docks; hydroids, sponges, anemones, sea slugs, sea squirts, jellyfishes, and others. Your hand lens may be useful.

Plan to have lunch between 11:30 and 12:30. There are many options here. You may pack a lunch, or opt for one of the many restaurants in the area. If there’s time, some of us may eat at a restaurant Ed recommends on Lady’s Island. It’s called “Fuji”, and is located on the left side of US 21 between Beaufort and the stoplight.

At 1:00 we will assemble at the Coosaw Island Marina for departure aboard the “Dixie Lady.” This marina is located at the Lucy Point Bridge (the only bridge) on Sam’s Point Road (Route 802). Take either of the two bridges from Beaufort to Lady’s Island, and then follow the signs to 802. Stay on 802 until you cross Lucy Point Creek bridge, and then park on the left shoulder of the road immediately after crossing the bridge.

Please Note!! There is a $25.00 fee for the boat tour. The Dixie Lady is a large, comfortable pontoon boat with a bimini cover. We’ll be cruising to Morgan Island where we’ll observe the monkeys, birds, and other wildlife. We may stop off at a sand flat or saltmarsh for botanizing and invertebrate collection, so wear your mud shoes and bring insect repellent! Ed says Skin-so-Soft is especially effective against the no-see-ums. Also, don’t forget your binoculars. After the cruise, plan to join us for supper. One suggestion if you like quality seafood is the 11th Street Dockside Restaurant in the little village of Port Royal.

SUNDAY: On Sunday we’ll explore Hunting Island State Park, beginning with a morning beach walk to observe dune vegetation, shells, shorebirds, and of course, invertebrates. Meet at 9:30 at the Store adjacent to the Campground parking lot.

Camping: Hunting Island State Park campground accommodates tents and RV’s, and the price is $20.00 per night. It is located about 16 miles from downtown Beaufort. It’s best to make reservations in advance; call 843-838-2011.

Motels: There are numerous motels in the area, especially on US 21 approaching the downtown area. Call for information, or check out the Beaufort Website at http://www.beaufortsc.org. The Hampton Inn, located on US 21 behind Applebees, has a nice marsh view. Identify yourself as a SCAN member, and you can get a rate of $62.00 for a double room. Up to 4 persons can share a room, and breakfast is included.

REMINDERS! Don’t forget your sunscreen, insect repellent, binoculars, and hand lens, and bring old shoes for “mudding” or wading.


From I-95 Southbound: Take exit 33, to US 17 north, then follow that until US 21 turns south toward Beaufort. Follow US 21 into Beaufort.

From Charleston area: Take 17 south until 21 turns south toward Beaufort.

To reach the Downtown Marina, follow 21 into Beaufort proper. Turn right at the stoplight at the foot of the Lady’s Island Bridge onto Bay Street. The Marina is a couple of blocks on the left.

To reach Coosaw Island Marina, berth of the ‘Dixie Lady’, cross the Beaufort River on the Lady’s Island Bridge. Watch for signs to SC 802 and turn left on to it at the first traffic light. Follow 802 (Sam’s Point Rd.) until it crosses Lucy’s Point Creek. Cross the bridge and immediately park on the left shoulder of the road; walk down to the Coosaw Island Marina located on the creek below the bridge.

To reach Hunting Island State Park continue south on US 21 following the signs to the park. For Sunday’s trip, park in the campground parking lot.