- Preparations, drive over, and research on Croft
- Arrival, initial impressions, and setting up
- A look around Croft SNA
- Early morning kayak paddle on Lake Craig at Croft SNA
- Interview with Park Manager Mr John Moon
Off late this morning to Croft State Natural Area, South Carolina, for a few days of RV ElderCamping, walking/hiking, and hopefully, kayaking. Croft is in the northwest part of the State, not far from Spartanburg. If you click on the photo above you may be able to see its location on the thumbnail South Carolina map.
The drive up, as outlined here by Google Maps, looks quite good. The first part does require travel on our homogenized super-highways. But then the program shifts to Route 56. A new one for me. I’ll let you know how it goes. Google estimates drive time at around 2 hours. So, probably 2.5 hours or so towing the Ainer with my elderly Town Car, and taking time to look around.
Croft is one of the State’s largest Parks, with just over 7,000 acres. It’s a horse-friendly Park. With stalls for 55 horses, according to the website, and 20 or so miles of horse trails maintained by the Park. That’s in addition to four or five hiking trails, rated from moderate to “strenuous.” Oh my.
Internet-based RV camping reviews of Croft SNA are quite good. Reading them, I’m surprised not to have heard more about it. So, the campground should be comfortable and well maintained. We’ll see. I’ve reserved site # 31, which is near Lake Craig. Or, officially, Lake Tom Moore Craig. The Park maintains a boat ramp there, and the lake is described as a “150-acre watershed.” Given high daytime temperatures, I’ll give it a try early in the morning.
Croft State Natural Area has an interesting history. During the 1940s, it was “Camp Croft,” a U.S. Army infantry training center. Click on the photo of its home page above to access a very interesting SCHistory.net website dedicated to Camp Croft.
When visiting the Camp Croft website, at …
I’d begin with the “History” page. This remarkable aerial photo is at the very top of that page. It’s only one of dozens, if not hundreds, of historic photographs presented throughout the site. Documenting use of the Croft Area from the beginning right up to the 1950, or 1949, as the Parks website reports, sale of 7,000 acres to the State of South Carolina.
There’s also a maps section, a photo gallery, a people section, weapons/equipment, and all sorts of other interesting things. Really a beautiful site. A model for the sort of thing I’m trying to learn to do. I hope you visit it right away.
Unfortunately, I won’t be able to access this site, or any other site, while at Croft SNA since there’s no WiFi connection. It would be nice to compare photos of the Park today with photos of the same place taken back in the 1940s.
So, off to Camp Croft -- ‘er, Croft State Natural Area!