Hunting Island, SC

Friday, August 28, 2015
I work from home, so I've been extremely lucky these past few years to not have a morning commute.
But Wednesday I had a scheduled leadership training at a I had to get up and join the rat race.

Despite being stuck in the inevitable rush hour traffic, I found myself lost in daydreams while staring at the morning sun. It was really cool actually, because with every turn I took, I saw the sun at a different angle which awakened my senses to a new memory each time...

At one glance it brought me back to Key West. Laying in a hammock tied between two palm trees, staring up at the sky while seagulls screamed in the background.

On another turn, the sun was so bright in my eyes that it instantly brought me back to hiking in Sedona. The bright sun lighting the dusty desert trail, and looking up at an even brighter blue sky.

These are all some of my favorite places, where a piece of me still floats around... and just recently I added a new one to the book.

Hunting Island, SC.

20 minutes outside of Beaufort, SC there is a magical island that is undeveloped and nearly untouched by modern civilization. To get to it, you must drive 20 minutes down a road with saltwater marshes on one side and shrimp boats on the other.

Whether you are going to visit for a day at the State Beach, or spend a night or two at the State Campground, you are sure to experience a few jaw dropping moments and explore places not a lot of people can find...

The beaches are very undeveloped.
If you're looking for fried dough and T-shirt shops, you've come to the wrong place.
The shores here are quiet; lined with dead trees from fast erosion and loggerhead sea turtle nests.

Hunting Island was also named one of the best places in the country to explore tide pools. You will find sand dollars, shark teeth, starfish, and the occasional baby sea turtle trying to make his way home.

When you get hungry, all of the locals will advise you to get a shrimp burger at the local shrimp shack! It's about a 10 minute drive outside of the park. Also - cash only.
It's strategically placed right next to a shrimping company, so all of their seafood is fresh off the boat.

Another must-see on Hunting Island is the infamous lighthouse! Of course I got the locals to dish on if it's haunted or not......

Spoiler Alert: IT IS.
And you can climb right up to the top! It's not too bad of a hike. Perfect way to burn off that shrimp burger.

Ahhh that breeze.
Being in a very humid, subtropical climate, it's almost guaranteed that later in the evening thunderstorms will pop up. And you know what that means:

...and they can get intense! 

But, like they say, every storm runs out of rain. So if you are wise and spending the night here, you will enjoy a colorful sunset with all kinds of crazy after-storm clouds.

If you're brave enough to face the eagle size mosquitoes and armies of sand fleas, then go for a walk on the beach at night. If it's a clear sky, you will be rewarded with one of the most beautiful, unobstructed views of the stars and milky way you'll ever see.
(Sorry, no photo. We're still perfecting our star-scape skills)

And if you're an early bird, you are in for a treat. Early in the morning, you'll awaken your senses to the sound of wind and waves and be treated to this view outside of your tent:

The sunrise is also when a lot of baby sea turtles hatch and begin their long trek to the sea. You will see turtle conservation volunteers checking the nests and of course, you can too. Just do not touch! We weren't lucky enough to stumble upon any during this trip, but I did stand next to a nest and take this photo:

I wish every single morning could be spent like this. To me, this is what life is all about. Enjoying quiet sunrises every single day. Starting each day with a beautiful view instead of scrolling through a social media news feed.  It made me sad for a bit that at home, I wake up to the sight of construction every morning. But, like they say, every storm runs out of rain ;) Who knows where my gypsy soul will take me in the future.

I hope I've convinced you to visit this beautiful place. It's truly a hidden gem, not a lot of people think about South Carolina as a vacation spot. National Geographic just named the SC sea islands one of the
'Top 20 Places to See in the World' 

And I couldn't agree more. 

Have a fun last weekend of August!
Sending you lots of love.

Camping on The Beach

Wednesday, August 26, 2015
"Hello from April 21st!
I wonder what adventures you've gone on since April.
I hope you've seen some awesome storms."

Oh yes, yes I have.

That was a note I wrote to myself back in April. How ironic that on that chilly Spring day, I randomly flipped through my agenda and picked the weekend of August 21st to write that little note.
The same day THIS happened:

Life is so beautifully bizarre.

So if you read my last post, you know I've been craving a camping trip. Not just any camping trip - I wanted to pitch a tent BEACH FRONT. I wanted to fall asleep to the sound of crashing waves, rock in a hammock underneath palm trees, and get up early to catch the sunrise over the water.

And that I did.

 Hunting Island State Park - nestled just 20 minutes outside of Beaufort, SC - has been recommended by several Palmetto natives. When they try to describe it they usually can't find the words and end up saying: JUST GO.

I knew they weren't kidding when I looked online to make reservations and saw that the campground was full for months. They have 1 cabin on the beach and it's booked for a solid 13 months from now.


So being blindly optimistic, I decided to check their reservation schedule every single day in hopes a spot would open up. You never know, right?

Well last Monday I sat down at my desk, opened my laptop, and did my usual refresh of the schedule.
Not only did 1 spot open up for that weekend, but it was waterfront too.
Getting a last minute waterfront spot during the peak Summer months is just unheard of.

We had zero camping gear when I booked this site. That's how spontaneous and random it was.
My latest life motto I'm trying to live by is 'Think Less, Do More.'

So, we ran out to grab the basics!
Graham Crackers/Marshmallows/Chocolate

And off we went.

How dreamy is this place?
It's very 'prehistoric' looking. Hunting Island prides itself on being very undeveloped.
So undeveloped that you can lay on the beach and see the milky way at night...

Our mornings were spent waking up with the sand fleas Summer sun and perfect sea breeze...

Days were spent roaming the deserted beaches and feeling free....

'Think Less, Do More'

Nights were spent eating too many s'mores, playing frisbee on the beach, and rocking in the hammock...

This campground is everything and more. The first day we got there we already made plans to come back in the Winter. It was a weekend straight out of a dream. Totally unexpected, too.
I mean it when I say, the best trips are always unplanned ;)

I left this wonderland feeling sad my time here was up, but curiously wondering...
how does it ever get any better than this!?

I guess time shall tell...

August Adventures

Thursday, August 13, 2015
Hi friends.

August has been a classic 'dog days of Summer' month for us so far. A lot of relaxing, routine, and nothing too new & exciting over here. While my Sagittarius soul is running in circles, the other, more introverted side of me is secretly enjoying it...

Days are spent working.
Evenings are spent unplugging from technology and hiking here.

Summer storms are starting to wind down (nooooooooooo) and I can vaguely feel Fall in the air...
While I'm sad storm season is coming to an end, these muggy afternoons sure make the woods look beautiful.

When I lived up North I used to get so bummed about Fall. The crisp air and colored leaves were every day reminders that a 7 month winter was coming up quick. But now that I live in the South, I'm actually looking forward to Fall. I want to drive the blue ridge parkway, pumpkin spice latte in hand, and check out the foliage in the cooler weather. I guess these Southern natives were right when they said Summer gets old real quick - 95+ degrees every day since May. Wooo! Someone send me HERE.

Speaking of cooler weather and New Hampshire, this weekend we snuck away to the mountains in upstate SC and found this. A historic red covered bridge! I could've sworn I stepped into a time machine and was back in New England. This is Campbell's covered bridge in Landrum, SC.

After this, we drove another hour or so into the mountains and discovered one of the most beautiful farms in South Carolina...

Look at the view! This farm is just stunning. They have orchards, vineyards, and a rustic barn straight out of every girl's dream wedding board on Pinterest.

They have a cute little restaurant on a deck overlooking the mountains. We were so excited to try lunch there, but we were 20 minutes too late. Maybe next time.

All of the staff were so friendly and inviting. True Southern hospitality at this place, treating everyone that comes around like they're family. They were setting up for a wedding and I have to admit, if I could go back and get married again... this place would be it.

Lately I've been craving a weekend of camping. On the beach. Makes s'mores on the beach and falling asleep to the sound of waves....ahhh doesn't that sound like heaven?
Perfect way to send off Summer 2015.
I've been eying THIS we'll see what transpires.

I hope you're enjoying these last days of Summer, wherever you are :)

Designed with ♥ by Nudge Media Design