Whooping Crane Pond

Location: Southern South Carolina
Trip Starts: Parking Area
Trip Ends: Parking Area
Total Distance: 0.9 mile
Hike Type: In & Out, Backtrack Hike
Hike Difficulty: Easy
Trails Used: Nancy Cathcart Path, Whooping Crane Pond Boardwalk
Trail Traffic: None
Trip Type: Day HIke
More Information:

Hilton Head Land Trust
P.O. Box 21058
Hilton Head Island, SC 29925


The 137-acre Whooping Crane Pond Conservancy is located on Hilton Head Island within Hilton Head Plantation. It consists primarily of freshwater black gum (or tupelo) forested swamp and open “savannah” swamp. A swamp edge transition zone of thick, head-high bushes separates the swamp from the pine dominated uplands and the habitat supports approximately 75 plant species and 100 wildlife species.

This pleasant hike in Hilton Head Plantation has two components. The first is along the Nancy Cathcart Path which winds through a dry pine forest and joins with the second section of “trail” on the Whooping Crane Boardwalk. The boardwalk is an impressive engineering feat in itself and obviously took significant effort to build (and I expect requires significant effort to maintain.) The area formed as a shallow valley between ancient shoreline dunes, and the swamp is fascinating to explore over the course of about 0.5 miles (which includes the Nancy Cathcart Path). Views from the platform areas are sure to offer bird sightings among other things.

GPS Coordinates:


  1. BirdShooter says:

    Dogs are no longer permitted on the boardwalk starting ~2020.

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