Weston Slough Bridge

Big Tree Hike

9 AM Saturday, January 14, 2017

In 2013, Frank Henning, the park’s Learning Center Director, approached USC Prof. John Kupfer (Geography) about a project to update the park’s big tree database.  The park was divided into over 50 sectors and volunteers agreed to search the sectors to confirm the status of trees known from the database as well as identify any new candidate trees for the database.

We will visit an accessible sector to the east of the Weston Lake Loop Trail to discuss the project and share some of our discoveries, including a newly documented Loblolly Pine, some unusual cypress and tupelo and other serendipitous discoveries that arise when visiting the same area repeatedly and intensively.  En route, we will stop by the Richland County pine, a pocket of old growth just off the Elevated Boardwalk, and the national champion Loblolly Pine.

Meet at the Harry Hampton Visitor Center at 9 a.m. The hike will last until 2 p.m., so bring lunch and something to drink. Participants should be in good physical condition with sturdy foot wear. Total walking distance will be about five miles, about half of which will be on maintained trails. The hike will be limited to 30 people.

Contact John Grego at 803-331-3366 or friendsofcongareeswamp@gmail.com to sign up. Preference will be given to members of Friends of  Congaree Swamp.