Gem of the low country

If you know the region of the country referred to as the low country then you probably know that Charleston, SC is one of its shining gems. After our long weekend at the Tiny House North Carolina street festival in Pink Hill, we started back south. We briefly stopped in Myrtle Beach but ultimately Charleston was our aim. Overall, I think we spent 5 days in Charleston although it most certainly deserves more. Our first evening there was hardly there at all but rather in Francis Marion National Forest, which is just north of town. The campground, Buck Hall, was of course completely full, but not to worry, our bus basically treads on a cloud of blessings! There was a small ‘overflow’ area tucked into a wooded cove that we were allowed to stay at for a mere 5 bucks instead of the usual 20, not to mention it was a dreamier spot than the campground. IMG_0872Oh and we had it all to ourselves. This proved to be just what the family needed. Something about a quiet, tranquil night in the forest seems to refresh you from the wear and tear of extensive travel and road fatigue. Now I’m prepared for some city driving, and let me tell you, driving a full size school bus through a historic city founded in the 1600’s isn’t for the faint of heart! Speaking of hearts, mine is anxious to meet our baby on the way! Yes, were expecting! I promise there’s a point here… Our first stop in Charleston was actually a prenatal appointment for Rachel followed by some authentic low country seafood at ‘The Wreck’. Most people can’t find this place in a Honda civic, so we drove the bus.

IMG_0924
Notice, no sign. Like I said, hard to find.

The food, heavenly and heavily fried, and surprisingly Charlotte ate the seafood up like it was nuggets from Chick-Fil-A.

Now you can ask, “where do you park a giant bus in Charleston for 4 days?” Well, you don’t. As I always say, we love making friends on the road and this particular time proved to be a bigger blessing than usual. A friend we made in Greenville, SC introduced me to a couple that was involved in one of his camper restoration projects. After a few days of working with them, we exchanged info. Turns out they reside in Charleston, well actually just outside Charleston on the Isle of Palms (even better). We contacted them on our way into town and they graciously offered up their driveway for us to boondock. Awesome! One thing you should know about the Midwestwanderers, if you offer us a place to park, we’ll be there. So we did a little island hopping to get to their place and wow were we surprised! This isn’t the kind of house or neighborhood you should be letting crazy bus people park.IMG_1192But like I said, more blessed than usual. Two blocks from the beach, I’ll take it. With the exception of one full day committed to the Isle of Palms beach, which was beautiful, we would leave the driveway first thing and head into the downtown area. This was basically just us eating amazing food and trying to justify it, but lets call it “exploring Charleston”. Hey to be fair we’ve been riding our bikes a lot, I mean once we find a spot to park in a city, its all bikes and walking after that. So for our southern BBQ fix we filled up on Rodney Scott’s whole hog BBQ. IMG_1011Let me say if you don’t plan to eat there then don’t go within a quarter mile radius of the place, if you catch a whiff of the sweet smoke literally billowing out of the back, you’ll be next in line to order before you even realize what happened. I’m not sure what was better, the meat itself or the cornbread! No regrets, we redeemed ourselves with our version of a bike tour through all the historic neighborhoods. Which isn’t just a couple of select streets. The old southern architecture, specifically residential, was outstanding, like a look backwards in time. IMG_0958A completely different feel and style than any other place we’ve been. Ok, now back to the food. Another satisfying spot we indulged in was Mercantile and Mash. Rachel told me they were rumored to have a mean scone…

I LOVE scones and yes they were amazing. The 5 days we gave Charleston was great and we certainly didn’t run out of things we wanted to do but we are trying to work our way west before spring and summer escape us so we moved on down the road. Spent a few days in Savannah and we’ll be in Jacksonville today Don’t forget to wave if you see us go by!

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8 thoughts on “Gem of the low country

  1. Hi Rachel and Luke! Firstly, congratulations on your happy news. We were lucky enough to get a quick walk-through of your bus at the Pink Hill festival; and my husband and I were thoroughly smitten! I was one of the (probably) thousand-odd folks who complimented you on your blue ceiling, Rachel. 😉 I really appreciate the postings y’all’re doing, as we are interested in your example to help us entertain the notion of doing something similar in a few years. 🙂 Anyway, you mentioned bike riding in Charleston. Just curious. Where do you stow your bikes on the bus? 🙂
    Cheerio! Heather

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    1. Hi Heather!,
      Thanks! We are glad to hear some feedback from the festival. What an awesome weekend. To answer your question, our bikes are carried on the front of the bus via a typical hitch-mounted bike rack. Alternatively it has been adapted to bolt directly to the front bumper of the bus. Thanks for checking out our bus at the festival!
      LUKE & Rachel

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  2. Need a way to contact you guys and come to VA— we could use a hand especially with your ideas and yall can park on our land while you visit~ Blessings and Awesome Job! Beth~

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  3. I watched the Living Big In A Tiny House video and really like you guys AND your bus. You mentioned you like be off-grid as much as possible. Where do you park your bus at night? How often do you move around? What percentage of the time to you have to pay for a camp site parking?

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    1. Hi Kurt, thanks! Yes we love being off grid so we often utilize free parking on national forest land, BLM land, driveways of friends we make while traveling, and the occasional Walmart lot. We also use our Harvest Host and Boondockers welcome memberships as much as possible. (There are links to those sites in our affiliates page) The bus is currently our only means of transportation so we move nearly every day but sometimes returning to the same spot for usually no more than a few days. We probably pay for camping less than 20% of the time!

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  4. Hello, are you guys planning to be in the Northeast area anytime soon? (New Hampshire, Maine). I would love to see your bus and have quite a few questions. (solar, water, etc) I’m thinking of doing something similar and would like to meet you. Thanks! Caroline

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    1. Hi Caroline! We actually went through Maine, New Hampshire, and all of New England last fall. What an awesome part of the country! So sadly we don’t have any plans to pass through there in the near future. If you get rolling on a project of your own, we are always glad to answer technical question and help when we can!! You can always email us: midwestwanderers@gmail.com

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  5. Amazing! I love your bus!! What an incredible journey you are on! Thanks for the inspiration!! I have a mobile business too and have thought very seriously about hitting the road! Wish I had these welding skills…but we may do an RV in our future!

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