Although it does make for a busy weekend, we have fallen into a bit of a routine of visiting a National Park on a Sunday so that Dave does not have to take time off work and school life is not interrupted during the week.
It was another beautiful day, shorts were apparently the order of the day but I had a mosquito fear and kept my trousers on!
Congaree was a good 45 minute drive away, through some very interesting areas and neighborhoods. There were huge houses in the middle of nowhere, followed by trailer parks, run down shacks, large factories, more large houses, double-wides, it was amazing to see the variations of life in a relatively small area. Also, where Illinois was the state for corn and Maine had its wild blueberries, here, we are seeing field upon field of cotton - now we're know we're in warmer climes!
Congaree is essentially a preserved floodplain, as untouched as possible, allowing nature to run its course. There is an enormous diversity of plants, trees and wildlife. The Ranger was excited to tell us that for the first time in over 4 years, they were experiencing severe flooding - it is the flood waters that deposit nutrient rich soil as the waters recede, so flooding is good. However, it also had an effect on the boardwalk around the Park, the majority of the lower boardwalk was completely underwater so we were only able to walk part of the loop out to Westin Lake. As Jake said, it really wasn't so much of a lake, as a continuation of the floodplain at this point!
The children completed the Junior Ranger program, learning more about the Park and had their names announced over the loud-speaker in the Visitor Center; they liked that!
States visited: 49!
visited 49 states (98%)
Create your own visited map of The United States
Miles driven so far -
LOOP 1 (Aug 2009 - Aug 2010): 29,000
LOOP 2 (May - August 2012): 10,800
Highest altitude with camper: 11,158ft (I-70, CO)