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Online Kayaking Guide for Charleston, SC:
A Sea Kayak Trip to Capers Island & Dewees Island!

Capers Island   

We launch from the Gadsdenville Public Boat Landing in north Mount Pleasant. As the ebb tide edges us along Copahee Sound, we paddle to Capers Inlet (the inlet between Capers Island and Dewees Island). On the paddle out, we will see many shore and water birds along the mud and oyster flats.

Many paddlers enjoy spending time on Capers Island Heritage Reserve, which is an undeveloped barrier island, to walk the gorgeous beach for a couple of hours and view the astounding boneyard - an eroding maritime forest. The exposed face of Capers is beautiful, with plenty of shells and sand dollars it's a shell hunters dream. The tidal pools hold small fish, snails, crabs and other mysterious tidal creatures.cherry
              point launch

We typically view our local Atlantic Bottlenose dolphins playing in the water. Many of the bird species in the area which can be viewed off the McCaskill Trail. The trail starts at the dock on the south end of the island, but we can meet up with it by taking the path from the beach where we land. Herons, egrets, ibises, bitterns, opsprey, and Bald Eagles soaring over the island in recent years are becoming common to the area.

              strand feeding

Capers Island is one of the very few islands that allow camping with permit. The SC Dept. of Natural Resources will fax or e-mail you a free camping permit. Telephone them at 843-953-9300, they are very accommodating. Camping must be done at the north or south ends of the island. Fires are allowed using downed wood, driftwood.

Dewees is a privately owned island. You can land on their beach, but do not go above the high tide line and respect the privacy of the island.

              screen in the summerIt is approximately a 3 mile paddle from the landing to Capers Inlet.
If you seek a longer paddle, continue from the inlet out in front of Dewees, back in through Dewees inlet and behind Dewees. This circumnavigation of Dewees is 6 miles, making the total trip about 12 miles.

• At the ramp: oyster shells.

• Care needs to be taken when navigating the route because as the tide falls, what appears to be navigable can quickly become very shallow water, marsh mud, or very sharp oyster beds. It is best to embark at least 2 hours before low tide and not plan to return until 2 hour into the flood tide.

• Surf can develop by the ocean side of Capers, depending upon the conditions.

Directions :
To find the Gadsenville Landing, from Charleston, go north on Rt 17. About 8 miles north of the Ravenel Bridge you will pass the intersection of Rt 17 and Rt 41 (stay on 17). 3 miles past this intersection is Gadsenville Road on the right. Take this right and go to the end of the road.

Capers Island GPS coordinate map

Resources :
A favorite on-line resource for tide and current information is Another great tide and current resource is the Tidelog, available at Sea Kayak Carolina.
tidelog sea
              kayak carolina
Tidelog offers a great visual presentation of tides, currents, sunrise and sunset, and other useful information for coastal kayak trip planning.

Current information from the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources can be found at their website.


›› SKC Photo Gallery - coming soon

›› SKC Weather Forecast links

Current Reports:
          • Lake Moultrie and Pinopolis Locks
          • Wando River and Cat Island
          • Garris Landing to Bull Island
          • Oak Island Marsh Tour
          • Sol Legare to Sandy Point via the Mighty Stono River
          • Deveaux Bank
Don't miss Sea Kayak Carolina’s Resources page for information on tides, weather and other critical information to help you plan your kayak trips in Charleston and other coastal areas in South Carolina.