The Dog Days of Summer

Message From The Director

The dog days of summer are upon us, and for many people, the dogs days are hitting at the same time that cabin fever is getting the best of us!  The North is experiencing heat waves like never before, while here in South Carolina, we're used to this hot weather and temperatures in the triple digits.  While we can always stay inside in the air conditioner, some of us are eager to be anywhere outdoors.  The good news is, many of our parks offer experiences to help with your cabin fever, along with making the heat bearable. So depending on your sense of adventure and comfort level, let me offer you a few suggestions.

If you are the, “I’m not going outside until I can do it without breaking a sweat” type, we have some options for you. Check out some of our park cabins, lodge rooms and camper cabins that provide a change of scenery -- with cool a/c. While many of our popular parks may be booked, you can still find availability this summer to sit in a nice air-conditioned park lodging. While there, you may decide to jump into a nearby park lake or stream for a swim, or connect to Wi-Fi and work in a different setting.  If you really don’t want to leave the comfort of your own home, you can always check out our parks YouTube or Facebook page for fun crafts and videos that will give you something cool to do and maybe even whet your appetite for your next park visit.

For the adventurous or the “I don’t mind the heat as long as I can cool off and am not sweating like a park ranger” folks, we have lots of options too. You can day trip to many of our parks and with little effort, find cool locations to relax in the shade or jump in the water and cool off.  From creeks and streams at Table Rock, to swimming areas at Barnwell, Cheraw and even the Atlantic Ocean, you can access some refreshing waterways across South Carolina.  Want more adventure?  Take a hike in the shade of some majestic trees in the Upstate and then cool off next to a waterfall, lake or stream.  Explore maritime forests along the coast, or walk a park trail before dipping your toes into the cool waters found at almost every park. Set an easy pace, bring some water and take your time. A quick hike and a day of relaxation can be just enough to help break that cabin fever.

Finally, if you’re that rare visitor who treats this time of year as more of a challenge than an obstacle --bring it on!  Our trails, which during cooler times of year may be congested, this time of year, can offer a reward for those who can tolerate the heat.  Depending on the trail, there could be a cool breeze, peaceful view, the silent stillness of the afternoon or the refreshing gurgle of distant waters.  This is the time of year for the path less traveled.  It can also be a great time to join your fellow outdoor enthusiasts under the stars in one of our campgrounds.  I always enjoy seeing hardy campers in the summer, sit and enjoy the glow of their campfires in our parks late in the evening.      

So if you need help breaking that cabin fever or getting outside, remember we are here for you.  Grab your park passport, load up some ice cold water, make a reservation and come out and enjoy your South Carolina State Parks!

P.S. You didn’t think I was going to forget to remind you to bring a mask, hand sanitizer and social distance did you?