11/29/20 to 12/2/20: Moving Into the Lowcountry

I'm not sure if there is a designated border for the beginning of South Carolina's Lowcountry, but for me it starts where I begin to see Spanish moss hanging plentifully in the live oaks. Certainly McClellanville with its bounty of moss-draped trees could serve as an entry point. The narrow cuts of the ICW that follow are often lined with mossy oaks before flowing into the golden marshlands that confirm, without a doubt, arrival in the Lowcountry. Nothing here stands up and shouts. Rather, it is the quiet beauty that holds your attention. 

We expected a nasty turn in the weather and timed our arrival in Charleston just ahead of the transition. Already the skies were spitting rain and Charleston Harbor was unpleasantly choppy. But the winds were still acceptable as we found a last spot on the face dock at the Harborage at Ashley Marina. 

We enjoy Charleston. We spent three months at Ashley on our first ICW trip so it almost feels like coming home when we return. But honestly, and not surprising I guess, it felt so different this time 'round. The marina was packed with boats but it and the town are quiet, as if in waiting mode for life to return to normal. There was none of the bubbling, almost giggly energy that normally permeates the popular historic district with its busy restaurants and King Street shops and galleries. Add to that, the temps were unseasonably cold, in the low 40s, with that nasty wind adding insult to injury. We wandered some of our favorite streets but look forward to coming back when the world has righted.

Sunset at our anchorage on Mosquito Creek. 

I love what the setting sun does for photos. Ashley Marina in Charleston.

Charleston’s hidden gardens are always a pleasure. Look down a lane, through a fence, around a gate and be surprised.

St. John the Baptist Cathedral in Charleston. Many churches no longer leave their doors open on weekdays. We walked by, saw an open door and had this beauty all to ourselves. We lit a candle. Of course.

It’s what we do, need to do. Charlestonians on the street were masked more often than not.

St. Michael’s Episcopal Church is an iconic Charleston landmark.

Charleston’s remaining cobblestone streets still catch the eye.

One of my favorite Charleston finds from 3 years ago. An open gate and a garden path leading to who knows where. Irresistible. I followed the “yellow brick road” and it brought me to a centuries old burying ground for the Unitarian Church. Fascinating.

Gilded marina.
Golden marshes dominate the lowcountry waterscape.


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