Bull Island with the Upstate Minis

Bull Island with the Upstate Minis-35

The Upstate Minis have been organizing some fantastic trips, lately, and I’ve been trying to take part in more of these. A few weeks ago Laura and I joined them for their X-Files Mystery Tour to PARI. This time, Jeff Goodman planned a trip down to the “Boneyard” on Bull Island to do some dawn photography. Sadly, Laura wasn’t able to go with us because of work. So, on Friday I swapped the Subaru for her Mini and joined the rest of the group for the drive down. Continue reading “Bull Island with the Upstate Minis”

Paddling to Ghost Island

Paddling to Ghost Island in Lake Hartwell-100

Bennie and I have been trying to keep to our paddling schedule, but the fates have been against us. On this last day of summer we had a nice trip to Jocassee planned, but then illness struck, and Bennie was unable to go. I had my boat loaded up, so I decided I’d head on out anyway, with a slightly altered itinerary. I have been wanting to check out the old Harrisburg Plantation Cemetery on “Ghost Island” in Lake Hartwell, so that’s where I set my sights. Continue reading “Paddling to Ghost Island”

Heading Down to Waycross

Waycross

It was a second Saturday, and our fearless leader Matt Richardson had put together an epic trip for our Lowcountry Unfiltered group. There was just one problem – it was on the verge of being too epic. Matt had proposed a 15 mile trek into the Okefenokee Swamp. While it sounded fantastic, it was at least a six hour drive from me, which would mean a two night stay. I’d have to leave on a Friday and get back Sunday. I had already committed myself to a cemetery tour in Columbia for Thursday night, and Laura had been down in Florida the previous weekend for Labor Day. It just didn’t look like the timing was right.

However, I decided that despite the craziness, it was an opportunity not to be missed. I decided that I would head down Friday and find a place to stay in Waycross, then camp Saturday night. It would be exhausting, but I felt sure the trip would be worth it. Continue reading “Heading Down to Waycross”

Labor Day Weekend in Hendersonville

Hendersonville Apple Festival-35

The Labor Day Weekend supposedly marks the end of the summer season. For me it’s an odd holiday that always got lost in the shuffle of everything else that happens this time of year. When I was a teacher, it was an interruption, coming at a time too early in the school year to provide real respite from the rigors of academia. (Not that I really minded a day off.) Now as a retiree it seems that it gets lost even more in the shuffle of fall.

There are lots of activities and events around Labor Day, but also lots of crowds as folks want to take advantage of one more summer fling. Laura had gone to Florida to help with her mom, so I decided to explore some of those events, even though I loathe crowds. Continue reading “Labor Day Weekend in Hendersonville”

Getting Pulled into Union County – Part 2, Union to Mount Vernon

Mount Vernon Presbyterian Church and Cemetery-022

So far I’d had an interesting, completely random morning of exploration. I’d visited Buffalo and met some nice folks. I got the opportunity to tour a historic building – was actually pulled into it. It wasn’t the last time I’d get pulled into something this day. I still had lots to see and do. Continue reading “Getting Pulled into Union County – Part 2, Union to Mount Vernon”

Getting Pulled into Union County – Part 1, Buffalo

Downtown Buffalo-001

It was one of those days. I had so many projects at home that needed attention. However, Tuesday was the one day this week I didn’t have an appointment of some kind. I wanted to get out of the house and do some photography and exploration. However, I had run out of ideas. Was there some place new in the Upstate I could explore? Some place I hadn’t already visited and photographed many times? I kind of left things to chance, and I’m glad I did. I was literally pulled into some new explorations of Union County. Continue reading “Getting Pulled into Union County – Part 1, Buffalo”

Quick Trip to Stumphouse Tunnel

Stumphouse Tunnel-15

It was hot. Extremely hot. My mind wandered to places where I might stay cool that didn’t require air conditioning. Standing under a waterfall seemed like it might be a good idea, but I couldn’t decide which would work best. Eventually, I decided a cave would do. There are no true caves in our area, but the next closest thing is Stumphouse Tunnel. I decided I’d take the cameras and head up that way. Along the way I would snag Ken in Clemson. Continue reading “Quick Trip to Stumphouse Tunnel”

Chasing a THIRD Swamp Rabbit – Part 4 Coopersville to Gaffney

Gaffney RR vintage

I had been tracking down the Swamp Rabbit Railroad, the third to bear that name in South Carolina. This one ran from Blacksburg to Gaffney through Cherokee Falls. Now I was out trying to find physical evidence of the old railroad. I had explored from Blacksburg to Cherokee Falls along a route that briefly ran as a scenic railroad in the 1970s. Now it was time to cross the Broad River and see what I could find on the section from Coopersville to Gaffney. Continue reading “Chasing a THIRD Swamp Rabbit – Part 4 Coopersville to Gaffney”

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