There it is: the peninsula (actually an island) on the right.
Founded in 1989, Carolina Heritage is the original outfitter and the only treehouse camping on the Edisto River
The 48-acre Edisto River Refuge's walking trails: some large, others mostly deer trails.
Whether floating down the Edisto on the way to your private overnight site, walking the trails, or relaxing on the deck of your private treehouse, you are in a fragile ecosystem, an annual flood plain (thus Tree houses). Great blue heron, egrets, wood storks, pileated woodpeckers, wood ducks, wild turkey, deer, muskrats and raccoon are residents on the refuge. Frogs and owls serenade.
We are in Canadys, South Carolina, 4 miles from Interstate 95, Exit 68. Our outpost is on Highway 15, one mile north of the intersection of Highway 61. We are an hour and a half drive from Savannah, Columbia and Charleston.
Our outpost GPS coordinates: 33˚ 03' 55" N, 80˚ 36' 47" W
We're so rural our address doesn't always work on location finders. Here's how you can find us:
What time do we arrive in the a.m.? We have only one treehouse shuttle a day, so we ask everyone to be here at 9:30 am. That gives you time to paddle the 13 miles to the treehouse with plenty of daylight.
Do you recommend nearby camping/lodging if we drive in the night before? When you reserve, we e-mail you camping/motel/B&B recommendations.
Canoes- is it one or 2 people per canoe? We have 2-person canoes.
Is there any cell service in case of emergency? Yes, there's decent (not excellent) cell service with Verizon. Usually it works well. Others work fairly well on messaging.
What is the cancellation Policy?
Weather: The weather forecast in this area will probably call for some percentage of rain and thunderstorms, and you'll want to be prepared for that. Normal for this area is 40-80% chance of rain and thunderstorms every day, typically brief in duration. It is your option to reschedule or cancel with refund if rain and thunderstorms are predicted at 90% or more by weather.com for zip code 29477, 2 days or less in advance of your arrival date. If we should close river trips and treehouses due to flooding, you have the option to reschedule or receive a refund.
Personal: Reservations may be cancelled for any reason at least 45 days in advance of your trip for a full refund less the 6% credit card company fee for processing your deposit twice. Please note that no refunds for any reason are given if cancellation is 45 days or less prior to the adventure. A funeral or medical emergency is unfortunately within that. But...
If we’re able to re-rent your treehouse, we will refund your deposit. If we can't re-rent, then both you and we share the financial loss, as we receive only 50% of anticipated revenue. Rescheduling at the last minute means that the treehouse sits empty when others might have been able to rent it. You may want to consider travel insurance to protect yourself in case of personal emergencies.
How to Prepare for Rain and Thunderstorms?
Always prepare for rain, whether or not it is predicted. Regarding thunderstorms, they are predicted almost every summer afternoon, but often don’t materialize. If they do, remember you are on a river where all the trees are taller than you, so if something is going to be struck, it is probably not you. My philosophy is to stay comfortable and as dry as possible; if that means getting off the river and bundling up, then so be it. Typically around here thunderstorms don't last long. I'd suggest wearing a big floppy hat or a baseball cap and bringing a raincoat with a hood (keeps the rain out of your neck), possibly even an umbrella. That's what I do.
The treehouses include comfortable amenities, but they are constructed deep in the swamp where water is not piped in. As in other sorts of camping, canoeists carry in their own drinking water and use the river water for washing up. We do have nice outhouses.
Mosquitoes are totally rain dependent out here, so it's hard to tell. They're typically not bad, and a can of spray does fine: there are no mosquitoes on moving water; once in, tiki torches on the dining decks contain citronella, and the treehouses are screened. Mosquitoes appear with the warm weather, but we never have gnats or biting flies. When mosquitoes do appear, it can happen spring, summer or fall. Typically there's not an outbreak, but we always recommend carrying bug spray.
Why Canoes Instead of Kayaks?
Not only do canoes have more overnight storage capacity, but… the Edisto has many sharp curves, and our canoes handle them easily; long kayaks don't turn well on sharp curves with a moderate to strong current. Only short kayaks (8' or so) can handle the curves handily, and they don't have storage capacity.
When is the best season to come?
Well, the best time to come is basically whenever you feel like you'd like to go canoeing and spend the night in a treehouse. Some like cooler spring and fall weather, others the hottest part of the summer when you can spend all day and evening swimming, and some love early spring and late fall camping with bonfires.
The web site says we may see alligators... but then it also says you can swim....
There are very few gators up here: rarely do paddlers or fishermen see one. The few that are here typically hang out in the swamp rather than the river. Last year our guests saw 2 gators (some wanted to see more). People come up to here to swim. In the summer the water is shallow and you can see right into it.
If we're flying in, do you provide coolers?
Our guests come from all over the country. We are happy to lend you whatever you need.
Why do you recommend children be 11 years old? Any leeway on that?
Not much, in all honesty.
The reason is that the river is more challenging in places than the pictures show, with fallen trees and fast moving water around the bends. Everyone should be able to swim ashore, unassisted, with adult strength in hard current in the event of a capsize.
But, given that, there are times that slightly younger children may accompany your group on the river. When the water is low and warm in the summer, children as young as 8 might accompany adults if there is one adult per child and the adult is a good and strong canoeist.
When you’re closed in winter, do you still answer phones for reservations and gift certificates?
We do. If you leave a message we’ll usually return your call by the end of the day. If not, we're on vacation, so please give us a day or so to respond :)
Located midway between Charleston, Columbia & Savannah
Convenient for overnight stays from Charlotte & Atlanta
Find us using Mapquest, Garvin, etc. by entering: 1 Livery Lane, St. George, SC 29477
Our physical location is on the river on Hwy 15 in Canadys, SC
TREEHOUSE & CANOE RENTALS: APRIL 13 THROUGH NOVEMBER 19