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This casual, one-mile trail delves into one of the largest continuous stretches of tidal freshwater marsh in South Carolina, the Savannah National Wildlife Refuge. The one-way Tupelo Trail is one of several trails within the refuge and you must walk two miles on a connector trail to reach it. Once there, you will follow Vernezobre Creek on a dike that remains from the area's days as a rice plantation. Unlike some other dikes in this area, this one has not been built up or widened. Befitting its name, tupelo trees shade the Tupelo Trail, although you will note many bald cypress and massive live oaks, some said to be 150 years old. In season, birding and alligator watching opportunities are almost unlimited. There is a good chance you will spot great horned owls, while ricebirds such as bobolinks and red-winged blackbirds are numerous on the refuge.

There is no camping in Savannah National Wildlife Refuge. Camping is available in South Carolina at Hunting Island State Park and in Georgia at Skigaway Island State Park, six miles southeast of Savannah.

Directions: From Exit 5 on Interstate 95 at Hardeeville, Drive south on US 17. After approximately four miles, SC 170 joins US 17. Stay on SC 170 when it forks to the right and the parking area for the Savannah National Wildlife Refuge is approximately one mile on the right, directly across the highway from Laurel Hill Wildlife Drive.

Distance: 1.0 miles

Difficulty: Easy

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Savannah National Wildlife Refuge, South Carolina

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The details, dates, and prices mentioned here were accurate at the time of publication.

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