Saturday, April 27, 2013

Charles Towne Landing, Magnolia Cemetery

Back in February I performed with the Carolina Wind Symphony at the South Carolina Music Educators Conference in Charleston, and Donna and I made it an overnight adventure. On the day we headed down we visited an old favorite, Charles Towne Landing, the site of the first permanent English settlement in the Carolinas, dating back to the 1670's. It was a beautiful day to spend outside.

This is "Landing Brave" by Peter "Wolf" Toth, dedicated in 1977. It was the sculptor's bicentennial gift to South Carolina, and it was sculpted from a Darlington oak that was approximately 500 years old.

Part of the site is a small zoo of sorts. There is a nice walk-in aviary that allows one to get pretty close to the birds.

Not often one gets to see a buffalo; these creatures are HUGE!

The Citadel off in the distance.

I love old padlocks!

Also on site is a tall masted ship, a replica a 17th century vessel. Here's looking up the mast.

After our performance Saturday morning, we enjoyed an incredible lunch at Taco Boy at the base of the Ravenel bridge. Yum! Highly recommend. We then ventured down the road to the Magnolia Cemetery and explored there for a while.

It was neat to see these German and Greek gravestones with the wording in those languages.

The crew of the H.L. Hunley submarine.

Saturday, April 06, 2013

Waterfalls Around Columbus NC

On Valentine's Day I hit the road to visit a couple of waterfalls around Columbus, NC. The first one was Shunkawauken Falls, which is visible from the road, but what a tight, winding road it is to get to it! Several tight hairpin switchbacks lead to the top of White Oak Mountain, where this waterfall lives. Once at the top there are a couple of small pullouts that offer a spot to park so you can get out and admire the waterfall. Their are two distinct portions to it, separated by the road that travels over it.

The upper portion:

And the lower portion:

Parked in one of the pullouts; the upper waterfall is in the background.

From there I traveled a bit westward and visited Little Bradley Falls. This one was one of the more difficult that I have visited. There is a trail that follows the creek, but it's not clear where the waterfall is, so I had to guess where to park to start the trail; fortunately my guess was pretty decent. The big challenge is getting down to (and then back up from) the steep incline from the road down to the creek. The following photos show the view the road.

Once down, the trail was pretty easy to find, and a moderate hike led to the beautiful Little Bradley Falls; I really like the stair step arrangement.

By then I had worked quite a healthy appetite, so I got back on the road and took the first SC exit which leads into Landrum, home of a good restaurant that I've eaten at several times, the Hare and Hound Pub. I had a very yummy and filling shepherd's pie and 3 glasses of Coke, which charged me splendidly up for the rest of the ride home. :-) These 2 waterfalls bring my number visited to 76; you can view them all on this map.