I'on Swamp

Charleston, South Carolina

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2 Reviews
5 out of 5
A walk along dikes through a swamp full of bird life, alligators, and beautiful bald cypresses. I’on Swamp Trail loops along a gridwork of dikes on what was once part of Witheywood Plantation, a rice-growing estate. From the parking area, you enter a tangle of young trees, heavy vines, and thick brush. A short boardwalk takes you across water-soaked ground to an old roadbed. The roadbed gives way to a footpath running along the top of an earthen dike which is the only high ground in sight as you move through the quiet and still wetlands. To your right the piped wellhead of a natural artesian well splashes sparkling clear water in the black swamp. On the left is open water, home, in season, to impressive alligators and water lilies. I’on Swamp is famous among birders for its wide variety of species, particularly during fall and spring migrations. It is a great spot for warblers; the popular prothonotary warbler is often seen. The most elusive bird in North America, Bachman’s warbler, has been sighted here, although not in recent years. Deer are common in the swamp, and turtles are sufficiently plentiful to keep the abundant alligators well fed.

I'on Swamp Professional Review and Guide

"A walk along dikes through a swamp full of bird life, alligators, and beautiful bald cypresses. I’on Swamp Trail loops along a gridwork of dikes on what was once part of Witheywood Plantation, a rice-growing estate. From the parking area, you enter a tangle of young trees, heavy vines, and thick brush.

A short boardwalk takes you across water-soaked ground to an old roadbed. The roadbed gives way to a footpath running along the top of an earthen dike which is the only high ground in sight as you move through the quiet and still wetlands. To your right the piped wellhead of a natural artesian well splashes sparkling clear water in the black swamp. On the left is open water, home, in season, to impressive alligators and water lilies. I’on Swamp is famous among birders for its wide variety of species, particularly during fall and spring migrations. It is a great spot for warblers; the popular prothonotary warbler is often seen. The most elusive bird in North America, Bachman’s warbler, has been sighted here, although not in recent years. Deer are common in the swamp, and turtles are sufficiently plentiful to keep the abundant alligators well fed."

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Charleston
Distance: 2
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Skill Level: Easy
Duration: Day hike
Season: Fall and spring
Local Contacts: Sewee Visitor and Environmental Education Center , 5821 US Highway 17 North, Awendaw, SC 29429; (843) 928-3368.
Local Maps: Trail map available from Francis Marion National Forest office and at Sewee Visitor and Environment Education Center; Ocean Bay USGS
Driving Directions: Directions to I'on Swamp

Recent Trail Reviews

5/14/2010
0

Great way to experience a blackwater swamp. Barred owls were a treat!


1/1/2007
0

Hiked this trail on New Year's Eve 2007. Beautiful weather, no bugs -- but no aligators or birds either. Still a nice walk though. Highly recommend the fried pickles at the Sewee Restaurant on HW 17 nearby.



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May 2018