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Monday, January 28, 2013

Crazy Crab Hilton Head Island

 What to do when you've been out shopping in Harbour Town on your BIKE, and it starts raining?  Hubby says, "you hungry?"  Great plan, let's have lunch here instead of riding our bikes back to the condo (Marriott's Monarch), and maybe by the time lunch is over...the rain will be gone.  Normally riding a bike in the rain isn't a big deal.  Unless it's cold, which it wasn't.  But, I had just purchased a nice wool sweater and really didn't want to get the new sweater all wet in the ride back.  Doesn't the Bloody Mary look awesome?  It was!
 And how perfect is this?  Naturally a beachy place for lunch is the place to stop.  The Crazy Crab in Harbour Town isn't the only Crazy Crab on the Island; but this location is perfect for shopping, eating, and sight-seeing.
 The menu is quite diverse, from simple things like my Fish N Chips to Lobster.  The place really rocks at night, I'm told.  It's quite large with several different rooms.
 Now this is the best fish n chips I've ever eaten.  Truly.  Not the last bit greasy.  I'm not a lover of fish at all and enjoyed every bite.  The slaw was fabulous and even the tartar sause and cocktail sauce were special.  I highly recommend you put this on your must eat list.  Hubby had, I think blacken grouper which was also fabulous. 
When lunch was over, it was still raining a bit.  So the manager double bagged my new sweater to help me keep it dry while I made my way to the bike rack.    However, hubby had gone ahead and brought the car back.  He was already wet and being nice thought it silly for 2 of us to be wet, so I drove the car back and he road my bike back.  What a guy!

I've mentioned this restaurant in a previous post, from an earlier trip, HERE; but this is the first we've eaten.  It won't be the only time though.  We do plan to return.  It's family oriented, casual, but has a nice upscale menu for adults in the evening.  Service was excellent.

*next Menu Monday is February 3, 2013.*

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Saturday, January 26, 2013

Alligators on Hilton Head Island Alive and Well

 How many alligators do you typical see when you're out for a bike ride?  One, two, or maybe three?  At least 3 would be my answer.  This is one pon/lagoon, one sunny spot further down the bike path/trail/road another pond/lagoon had 3 or 4 more.  They were further away so I wasn't able to get a picture.  I saw alligators several days in row, almost in the same spot.  Now being from Ohio, I'm not accustomed to seeing alligators.  But, after spending 2 weeks on Hilton Head Island, it began to seem the "norm".
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The one in middle almost silver.  The one on the right was huge.  Probably can't really tell that from my little point and shot camera...AND, no......I didn't try to get closer for a picture.  Males are typically about 12 feet long and weight around 500 pounds, though last May, 2012 a 13 foot male weighing 1,000 was found in Bluffton which is about 45 minutes from Hilton Head.  Female's are smaller, around 160 pounds, but regardless of the size they have 40 teeth and can produce 3,000 pounds of pressure with their mighty jaws.  Normally they hibernate in the winter months, trying to stay warm in their mud dens from October to May, so my seeing them almost everyday in January is a apparently unusual.  I've seen them other trips there, also in January; but nothing like the number I saw this time round.

They will eat almost anything, and anybody if provoked.  There are signs everwhere warning people to stay away, to not feed them, and not harass them.  When out west in places like Yellowstone where wildlife always see some idiot who thinks the sign means everyone but him or her.  I would imagine the same thing happens here on Hilton Head Island.  If you feed them, you will be heavily fined.  And once you feed them, you can almost bet the gator will have to be killed.  Why?  Because once fed by humans they will approach and become aggressive.  Even when not provoked small pets and children are at risk and should not be around lagoons, particularly not the edge.  In addition to the wild life they've been known to eat rabbits, small deer, and dogs.

The are cold blooded animals, so warm themselves with the sun, and cool themselves with the water depending on the time of the year.  Though they are a fresh water creature, they will travel through salt water to get to better food so can be found even on the beach, or in the marshes.  Spring and Fall is suppose to be the best time to see them.

Mothers protect their young.  Alligators can protect their young up to 3 years, and even a non aggressive Gator will go after anything and anyone without fear if they feel their young are in danger.   So, even if you don't see the Mother Gator; chances are she is there and you should be ware.

Alligators are very quick and very fast, they can outrun most people, even a horse for a short distance, something around 50 yards.  If you're being chased by one; you should run a zig zag pattern; as they can't make turns very fast.

Though the population is prevalent on Hilton Head Island, large gators are removed to protect humans on The Island.

Makes me wonder about Alligator shoes, and hats.....

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

One Hundred Miles of Bike Fun at Hilton Head Island South Carolina

Walk, Run, Pedal along with me on Hilton Head Island South Carolina.  This red bike with a nice comfy seat was my transportation during the first week of our 2 week vacation.  Rented this bike directly from Marriott's Monarch Resort for $30.00 a week which included the basket, the lock, delivery, and set up.  You really must rent a bike while on The Island.  It's loads of fun, easy, cheap and great exercise.  You can ride for miles and miles and miles.  The beach is nice and packed making it a wonderful place to ride as well as all the bike paths.  AND, as you can see wide open during the winter months.  We've traveled to Hilton Head now for the 4th year during either January or February.  Love it.  No, it's not the time of year to go if you want to bake yourself on the beach; but it's a great time of year to go for peace, quiet, fewer crowds, cheaper prices and there's much to see and do.

 This map shows the bike trails and the shared bike paths...both paved and not throughout the Island.  The part that looks like the toe of the foot is Sea Pines Plantation and they have their own map, showing the trails and paths there.  It changes constantly, but currently there are over 100 miles of bike trails/paths and shared roadways to enjoy.  Biking is easy as there very little up or down hill biking to worry about.  Staying on the bike paths also helps you avoid traffic and is safe for people of all ages.  Though I think you'll see more families during the traditional beach months, June, July and August when the kids are out of school.
Once again you can see the Island truly is shaped like a foot.  This map shows all the Marriott resorts in the area.  Marriott has a huge presence on the Island both with hotels, timeshares, and The Marriott Resort.  Click to enlarge so you can read the resorts names.  There are 3 time shares in Sea Pines, with a 4th near by that has easy access.  Some of the Marriott's are on the ocean, some on the marsh, some in the harbor area. 
Here's the bike trail map of the Sea Pines area where one can ride in a very picturesque setting of ponds, golf courses, ocean, marsh and wildlife areas.  There's shopping and dining by bike as well.  I've added some color dots to this map of locations where we've stayed.  Up by the lighthouse where the red dot is Heritage Club in Harbour Town where we've stayed twice.  Very nice adult oriented time share.  The purple dot middle bottom is the approximate location of Marriott's Monarch, the very first timeshare.  We spent our first week there this trip and really enjoyed it.  More on Monarch to follow in other posts.  Biking from there is the best of both worlds.  You're on the beach and in the middle of Sea Pines with somewhere around 17 miles of bike paths!  To the right bottom of the map is the blue dot which represents Marriott's Grande Ocean Resort.  This resort is also right on the beach and has it's own rather large bike shop.  It's a large resort and probably the most family oriented of the 3 with lots of extra kid friendly activities.

Will be blogging in more detail about the various resorts, what to see and do; but......hop on your bike and follow along; don't want you to miss anything.

**You'll be seeing some changes here on the blog, as this newer template doesn't work quite right.  Too bad, it seems perfect.  The previous blog template went by the wayside as many of the graphics on it weren't supported so I nabbed this one awhile back and see there's still need to keep looking, please bare with me**

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