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NPS Centennial: Paddling & Birding on the Congaree River

 
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Growing up in Columbia, South Carolina, I’ve had this somewhat overlooked gem in my backyard my whole life.  My dad loves bird watching, so, as a child, I got to go to the Congaree National Park about four times a year for the seasonal bird counts.  

Congaree-Joey-3.jpgIn my adulthood, I have grown fond of paddling, and have found a lot of joy paddling the Congaree and the creeks that flow through the flood plain of the park.  My pictures really don't do the park justice as we were there in the middle of January, but you can see the iconic cypress trees, their "knees," and a great shot of the sun peeking through while we were out of the boat exploring the flood plain.  There are wild hogs, alligators, and deer, just to name of few of the larger creatures roaming the park.  The list of wildlife is truly endless though.

There’s also an amazing raised boardwalk that takes you through parts of the park.  My uncle actually helped to build it!  Congaree National Park truly is a super diverse ecosystem that never gets old.  Just remember to bring your bugs spray in the summer!

- Joey, Mast Store Columbia

For more of our Mast Family National Park Service adventures and recommendations, click HERE