Monday, February 08, 2021

National Park then State Capital

We kicked our hiking exploration up a notch at the only national park in South Carolina: Congaree National Park.

The trees just on the drive over there looked great against the blue sky.

Wikipedia: "The park preserves the largest tract of old growth bottomland hardwood forest left in the United States. The lush trees growing in its floodplain forest are some of the tallest in the eastern United States, forming one of the highest temperate deciduous forest canopies remaining in the world."

The boardwalk on top of the swampland filled with giant trees was a souped up version of Missouri's Big Oak Tree State Park.

This was tree knee city.

Knees and toes, knees and toes.

Some of the trees were so massive you couldn't effectively take a picture of them. I attempted a poorly executed panorama to compensate.

We were doing a little walking tour and one of them was fun:

"The 18th Amendment was passed in 1919, prohibiting the sale and consumption of alcohol in the United States. Moonshiners and bootleggers found refuge in places like the Congaree River floodplain to earn a living. The iron box you see in the distance is an old still, used to make alcohol. Water and corn squeezings were used to make a sour mash. The mash was heated and distilled through copper tubing to produce moonshine. The Congaree floodplain's difficult terrain and tall trees made it a perfect place for moonshiners to hide stills and produce their illegal liquor."

I would like to witness but not experience a mosquito warzone.

Our thirst led us to Columbia's appetizingly named River Rat Brewery.

River Rat was decent but I was really excited to visit Cottontown Brew Lab. I've had enough pilsners and IPAs for one lifetime and now I want to see some weird stuff.

These guys did not disappoint. This place was about as fun and hipster as you can get. It was in a guy's garage, had crazy fun flavors like mango milkshake and peanut butter and jelly, and the guy said "f them labels" so the only thing on the beer cans was like an envelope label someone ran through their home printer.


We checked out the state capitol grounds as is our custom when in a capital city.

We were dismayed to see how much confederate trash there was on the front lawn.

You don't often see memorials to the Spanish American war so I thought that this one was pretty cool.

Slave ship

"To the South Carolina women of the Confederacy". Lot of participation trophies out here.

This dogshit was a confederate officer, governor of the state, and opposed Reconstruction. He didn't like black people voting and he didn't like black federal troops in his state.

Back at home I popped open a couple of the silver cans of deliciousness I had secured.

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