On the Road is a weekday feature spotlighting reader photo submissions.
From the exotic to the familiar, whether you’re traveling or in your own backyard, we would love to see the world through your eyes.
What an extraordinarily beautiful place! “…where nature reclaims itself, wildlife flourishes, and impermanence is exemplified.” I can see why you called it magical. ~WaterGirl
Though I rarely comment, I am always ‘here’, especially for the beauty and respite you all share in ‘On the Road’. This is my 2nd round of sharing memories–the first time I struggled to select only 8 of the thousands of photos I took during an 8-day whirlwind trip to 8 national parks in Utah/Arizona. Several folks asked for more, and I promise I will send more from that trip, but this time I wanted to share a special place closer to home.
Botany Bay Heritage Preserve/Wildlife Management Area is a protected 4,600 acre preserve on Edisto Island, about 45 miles south of Charleston, South Carolina. Botany Bay was opened to the public in 2008, and we’ve been visiting at least once a year ever since. It’s a magical place that is difficult to describe, where nature reclaims itself, wildlife flourishes, and impermanence is exemplified.
There is a 6-mile driving tour of the entire property, but the highlight is the ~3-mile length of barrier island seashore. To get there, you walk a half mile trail/causeway over marsh and through densely wooded hammock.
The beach is an ever-changing ‘boneyard’ of dead trees.
Never the same, even the tidal ebbs and flows reveal dramatic changes.
This was on Christmas Eve in 2008. It was overcast, misty and mysterious. Definitely an other-worldly feel that day.
I have hundreds of shots of twisted, intertwined, sun-bleached and surf-sculpted limbs and roots.
I’m obsessed with capturing the patterns and designs in nature–in the sand, water, clouds, seashells and flora. One of my favorite finds — The Starry Night on a sunny beach.
Those are amazing. That last pattern, and the giant tree on its side in the surf.
I thought Botany Bay was only in Australia. Live and learn. These photos are beautiful.
@Sab: I thought Botany Bay was just a ship in Star Trek.
so beautiful. especially the last one. especially interesting with my 25% SC heritage …
It’s an incredible place. Not just the beach, but the drive through the remnants of the plantation as well, including what’s left of an old tabby oven where the slaves did all their baking.
It’s an awesome place on “Edistlo”! If you get a chance watch Daughters of the Dust about Gullah folks in those islands.
The last time we were there we had a mini-meetup with a wonderful lurker who lives on Edisto. Hi if you are out there!
TS (the original)
@Sab: So did I. Was thinking I was about to see pictures of where I grew up on the shores of Botany Bay (Australia).
This Botany Bay looks so beautiful, I’m wondering which one was given the name first?
@Raven: Duh, it’s you!! Hi!
Initially the name Stingrays Harbourwas used by Cook and other journal keepers on his expedition, for the stingrays they caught. That name was also recorded on an Admiralty chart. Cook’s log for 6 May 1770 records “The great quantity of these sort of fish found in this place occasioned my giving it the name of Stingrays Harbour”. However, in the journal prepared later from his log, Cook wrote instead: (sic) “The great quantity of plants Mr. Banks and Dr. Solander found in this place occasioned my giving it the name of
BotanistBotany Bay”.[note 1]
TS (the original)
@Raven: Thanks for the links – I guess the Australian Botany bay is somewhat an older name being given by James cook in 1770. I’m sure it was beautiful when Cook saw it, but sadly polluted by the time I was there. We did, however used to swim in the area, probably not realising the extent of the pollution.
Edit: And while I was doing that – so were you – great minds and all that
@TS (the original): I never saw the water when I was there on R&R just about this time 51 years ago!
Stunning photos, especially the Christmas Eve shot. Thank you.
TS (the original)
@Raven: I’d married! and moved north by then. I would think you may have come into Sydney Harbour rather than Botany Bay – the latter was not a safe harbour & the first British settlement came ashore in Sydney Cove (1788) but I could be wrong. Or did you fly into Sydney for the R&R?
I was swimming in Botany Bay in the 1950s. There were sea walls built to form rock swimming baths where I learned to swim
But it wasn’t the true Ocean shores of the wonderful pictures above.
@Raven: Yes, it’s me! Hi! Let me know if/when you make it back to Edisto. Hope you’re enjoying Florida (and you’re not in the path of the coming storm).
@Sab: I believe there’s also one in Kent, UK.
Third of Two
@Keith P.: KHAAAAANN!!!11!
Mike in Oly
Wonderful set! Thanks for sharing them with us.
Looks like a great getaway place. Lovely photos.
Looks beautiful. I can’t help but think of the Star Trek version when I hear the name Botony Bay. I’m dating myself but…
Beautiful photos, thanks. We passed Edisto Island last October on our journey from New England to Puerto Rico- the ICW meanders through the tidal channels just north of it. Our biggest regret was that we were pressed for time and could not stop. Your photos just intensified that regret, so thanks, I guess.
Such beautiful photos! I hate the South Carolina climate, but maybe in the winter, in that magical time when we are able to travel again, I will have to see Botany Bay for myself.
Who hears “Botany Bay? Botany Bay!” in Chekov’s voice and wants to run away?
J R in WV
Wonderful place, beautiful selection of photos to bring it home to all of us!