Friday, April 30, 2010

March / April Birding Journal Observations

An extended winter weather season pushed back the arrival of some of the anticipated neotropical migratory songbirds, but they are almost all here now. While most of these sightings occur in western Colleton County, similar sightings are occurring across the Lowcountry outdoors. Birds observed include: red-bellied woodpecker, hairy woodpecker, goldfinch, yellow-bellied sapsucker, pileated woodpecker, cardinal, yellow-rumped warbler, chipping sparrow, carolina chickadee, tufted titmouse, pine warbler, carolina wren, bluebird, mockingbird, white-throated sparrow, swallow-tailed kite, blue jay, brown-headed cowbird, cedar waxwing and dove. The last week in April brought a bevy of birds to Snipe Hill including bobolinks, blue grosbeak, summer tanager, kingbird, white-breasted nuthatch, yellow-billed cuckoo, scarlet tanager, painted bunting, hooded warbler and ruby-throated hummingbird.

To view the Jan.-Feb. '10 birding blog entry click here.

PhotoByJulianClark: By far the largest bird 'sighted' on April 28 was the Eastern Wild Turkey!

To view past Birding Journal Observations from March / April click 20142013, 2012, 2011, or 2009.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

2010 Criterium Cycling Race - Speed Week

The 2010 USA CRITS Sutheastern Series professional bike race peddled through Walterboro during the afternoon of April 18. Criterium bicycle racing is defined as a race on a circuitous track. Walterboro's Washington Street (or Main St.) is blocked off to set up a long straitaway that is used for the start/finish line of the races on the one-kilometer closed course. The weather on this late spring day was crisp and cool and made for good racing conditions and really brought out the spectators to enjoy the amateur races beforer the men's and women's pro races.

To view past blog entries from the Criterium Cycling Speed Week click 2015 - 2014 2013 - 2012 - 2011 - 2010, - 2009 

PhotosByJeffDennis: The women's race gets off to a fast start; the next generation of CRITS racers waits to cruise to the finish line

VideoByJeffDennis: A competitor in the Master's race blows a tire on a sharp turn and goes down hard, but only suffered some minor bruising

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

2010 Colleton Soil and Water Conservation District Awards

The 2010 Awards banquet was held at Longhorn steakhouse in Walterboro to honor students who participated in contests that promoted conservation. Chairman I.M. Benton called the CS&WCD meeting to order at 6:30 and Rev. Mabry gave an invocation before a buffet dinner was served. Affiliate members of the CS&WCD were recognized such as Cheeha Combahee Plantation, Rizer's Pork & Produce, Snipe Hill and Clemson Extension Service. Affiliate members pay a yearly dues payment and then are invited to attend the awards banquet. A Poster and Essay contest were held for Colleton County students with the subject of "Endangered Species... Why Should We Care? Winners received a plaque and a check besides being recognized in front of the awards crowd. A conservationist of the year award was given to Colleton County farmer Charles Eugene Thomas for his lifetime of contributions.

For my blog from the 2009 Awards dinner click here.

PhotosByJeffDennis: The Awards banquet program; some of the student posters

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

2010 Lowcountry Redfish Cup - Savannah

The 2nd leg of the Lowcountry Redfish Cup was fished by 39 teams in Savannah, Georgia on Saturday April 24th. The two-man teams are allowed to weigh in two live redfish giving the team with the highest combined total weight the victory in Savannah. After a series of five events have been fished (check the previous results under the 2/27 blog entry) then a final event will be held on November 12 at a destination to be determined. Congrats to Team Egret and their 9.25-pound weight total - good enough for first place in Savanah. Team Egret's Fred and Tripp Bricketto weighed in two reds that weighed 4.35 and 4.9 pounds respectively. Second place went to Team Mud Dawg (Tom and Brent Worley) for their 4.2 and 4.05 redfish that totaled 8.25-pounds. Third place went to Team 2 Reds (Shane and Chuck Lather) for their 4.2 and 3.95 redfish that totaled 8.15-pounds. Fourth place went to Team Redfish Mafia (Capt. Jamie Hough and Ronnie Pitts) for their 4.6 and 3 pound redfish that totaled 7.60-pounds.
After the first two events Team 2 Reds is leading the Lowcountry Redfish Cup points standings, and Team Egret is currently in second place. To view past blog entries from the 2010 LRC click here. Angler Ronnie Pitts, one half of Team Redfish Mafia, with one of the many oversize redfish that was caught on tournament day

Sunday, April 25, 2010

2010 Charleston Inshore Anglers - Photos

PhotosByJeffDennis: Girls just want to have fun and Amy Little and Becky Accolla pose their fish in a kiss; Joey Schrecker and Shawn Cox caught these fish at the coal trestle in the Cooper River; Bill Roumillat is not preparing to dine, rather he is a DNR marine biologist who is recording lengths and weights while removing otoliths and gonads for research; Donald Smith, Michael Collins and Ben Gratzik are on the right course it seems for future sheepshead success

To view my blog entry for results from the 2010 Charleston Inshore Anglers tourney click here.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

2010 Charleston Inshore Anglers - Sheepshead Tournament

The Charleston Inshore Anglers (CIA) held their 18th annual Sheepshead Tournament in Charleston under overcast skies on April 24. The tournament had nearly 200 entrants and their is an 80% payback formula that goes to the top ten heaviest fish weighed in. King Street Grill on James Island hosted the Captain's Meeting on Thursday and the Weigh-In on Saturday which ran from 4 until 5. SCDNR was on hand to provide certified scales and to collect data from sheepshead that they 'work up.' Anglers that participate in the DNR program received a raffle ticket and one lucky participant won a Penn Sargus spinning reel. Lonnie East III won the event with a 10.12-pound sheepshead, and collected a $1240 first place check, with Paul Pundt in second place with a 10.0-pound sheepshead, followed by Bill Gerke in third with a 9.54-pound sheepshead. A special award for dogfish went to Bob Taylor for his 2.62-pound brown behemoth!

To view my blog entry from the 2009 Charleston Inshore Anglers tourney click here.

PhotosByJeffDennis: Patrick Blevins finished in 8th place with his 7.50-pound sheepshead; Kristi Scottaline finished in 5th place with her 7.58-pound sheepshead and is shown with John Weiner and his 4th place 7.9-pound entry; Capt. Robert Olsen stands with his son Andrew who won a rod and reel for the 2nd place youth angler award

Friday, April 23, 2010

Int'l. Women Fly Fishers - 2010 Festival

The International Women Fly Fishers (IWFF) organization, founded in 1966 by Fanny Krieger and the Golden West Fly Fishers of San Francisco, chose Charleston as their destination for their annual Festival and fishing trip. Members of the IWFF have been on the water each day this week with some of the top fly-fishing guides Charleston has to offer, like Capt. John Irwin of, and the redfishing has been fantastic, with many reports of 'first' redfish coming from these well-traveled female anglers. IWFF President Judith Austin Brown is an attorney living in California, while V.P. Susan Baer resides in Sonoma; the heart of wine country. The Charleston Angler hosted a reception for the IWFF on Thursday, ahead of another fishing day for IWFF visitors, and then the social schedule picks back up on Saturday when the IWFF will hold their annual awards banquet.

PhotoByJeffDennis: Kate Wagenlander and Linda Michael were in town from Illinois and N.C. respectively to attend the IWFF 2010 Festival. Linda caught a 32-inch redfish (her first) while fishing with Capt. Ben Floyd Judith (no hat) holds a 22-inch redfish caught on the fly; Susan Baer stands with her distinctive redfish that is marked with a double-spot

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Gray's Sporting Journal - 35th Ann. Issue

This issue of Gray's Sporting Journal should be arriving at newsstands within the next few days. Besides the feature stories and photographic essays, their press release tells us that Traditions editor Will Ryan writes about "Lost Fish," wherein an accomplished young lady manages to simultaneously catch a massive muskie and artistically deflect an ardent admirer, while paddling a canoe. Arts columnist Brooke Chilvers visits watercolorist Chet Reneson in his Connecticut home, and returns with packages of venison steaks, ropes of homemade sausage, and keen insights into just what inspires one of the premier sporting painters of our day. Terry Wieland remembers a deer from November, 1975, the night the Edmund Fitzgerald went down. James R. Babb remembers 35 years ago, when the horizon seemed boundless, and he'd never heard the words monetize and fly fishing used unironically in the same sentence. A. D. Livingston studiously stirs the campfire pot. Books editor Chris Camuto reviews important new collections of fly fishing stories and perhaps the largest hunting anthology ever to achieve doorstop status, along with a remarkable newly discovered book on hunting in Finland and Russia between 1904 and 1930. And inCutthroats in Heaven , poet Robert Wrigley realizes that each fish caught represents a fish earned, by whatever measure of grace we ourselves have earned in our lives.

Maybe one day Lowcountryoutdoors will have the great honor of being a contributing writer to Gray's Sporting Journal, a magazine that really speaks to the driven gentlemen sportsmen of the world.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Turkey success photos

PhotosByJeffDennis: Todd Stamps (cypress) and Julian Clark (Khakis) find themselves on the good end of a turkey hunt, and a lucky hunter who tagged a bird on public land at Hamilton Ridge WMA

Monday, April 19, 2010

Blue Angels Performance

The commemoration of Navy week ended with the U.S. Navy Blue Angels performing two shows over the weekend above Charleston harbor. With the 2010 Air Force annual air show cancelled due to 'wartime' operations in Afghanistan, the Blue Angels returned to Charleston at a crucial time. The six jets painted in navy blue and fighter yellow roared overhead in a tight formation before breaking off with four of the planes staying tight, while the other two did various fly-by stunts, like flying upside down while they passed each other! Patriotism was on display in the hearts and minds of the viewing public, with one military veteran calling the roar of the jets 'The Sound of Freedom.' Many thanks from to all our armed forces for working to preserve our many freedoms.

PhotosByPatrickDennisJr: Saturday air show from the James Island point of view

Sunday, April 18, 2010

2010 Family Circle Cup - Finals

Stosur versus Zvonereva will determine the 2010 FCC Champion. A tough-looking ankle injury forced Wozniacki to withdraw in the first set of her seminfianls match against the Russian Zvonereva, while Hantuchova lost in straight sets to the Australian Stosur. Both the doubles title and the singles title will be contested today at the FCC. Visit for more information.

To view my blog entry from the 2010 FCC semifinals click here.

PhotoByFCC: The 2010 champion Samantha Stosur holds the crystal. Congrats!!
PhotoByJeffDennis: A great view of the stadium court during the Game, Set, Rock! exhibition match; Stosur in action during the semifinals on Saturday; Zvonereva attended this year's media day and said that she was fully recovered from the ankle injury she suffered at the 2009 FCC

Saturday, April 17, 2010

2010 Family Circle Cup - Semifinals

The number one seed Caroline Wozniacki will face the number seven seed Vera Zvonereva today at 1 p.m. for a berth in the Finals match on Sunday. Neither player has lost a set in any match leading up to the semifinals. The other semifinal match will follow when number eight seed Daniela Hantuchova will square off against the fourth seeded Samantha Stosur. Hantuchova upset the number two seed Jelena Jankovic and has never reached the Family Circle Cup finals before. Following competition play tonight will be a special exhibition match entitled 'Game, Set, Rock: Tennis - Amplified' with music by the Blue Dogs and featuring tennis greats John McEnroe, Monica Seles, Jim Courier and Anna Kournikova.

To view my blog entry with video of Patty Scnyder click here.

PhotosByJeffDennis: Daniela Hantuchova of Slovakia uses her 5'11' height as a weapon against her opponents; Old Glory flies over the Family Circle Cup stadium court; Four of the top eight seeds have survived to play in the 2010 FCC semifinals

Friday, April 16, 2010

Haddrell's Point - Spring Fishing Expo w/ D.O.A.

Haddrell's Point tackle shop is holding its annual Spring Fishing Expo today and tomorrow at both its Mount Pleasant and West Ashley locations. Locals may know this event as the time to get your best deals on Penn and Daiwa reels, or just a good time to get line spooled up on old reels and to stop on by and have a free hot dog and coke while chatting about fishing. The headline of the 2010 Expo is the appearance of Captain Mark Nichols of D.O.A. lures at 6 p.m. today at the West Ashley location. (pre-registration required) Nichols will give a seminar on how best to use his patented D.O.A. shrimp to catch out Lowcountry redfish, trout and flounder. On Saturday Nichols will be at the Mount Pleasant location of Haddrell's Point taking questions and visiting with anglers. One of the Expo deals is the D.O.A. Oval Float Deadly Combo for only $3.95 - which is one of the easiest ways to get rigged up and fishing in no time! Capt. Mike Able Jr. is raffling off a full day inshore guided trip, so get into stores and register today and tomorrow.

PhotosByJeffDennis: The Spring Fishing Expo Tent is up outside Haddrell's Point West; Justin holds up the flier for the weekend next to the large selection of D.O.A. lures; free hot dogs attracted the West Ashley fishing club to HP West; Under the tent are spools of mono line and for superior cold storage of frothy beverages.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

2010 Family Circle Cup - Schnyder VIDEO

Lowcountry favorite after fourteen years of competing in the Family Circle Cup Patty Schnyder fell to fellow competitor and #1 seed Caroline Wozniacki in two sets during the 1 p.m. match on the stadium court today, but not before stirring up the crowd by taking the second set to 5 games all on a winner that deserved some extra Umph!

To view my blog entry about the 2010 FCC second round click here.

VideoByJeffDennis: Schnyder makes her point and takes the game, before surrendering the match

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

2010 Family Circle Cup tennis - Second Round

The WTA tennis tournament that calls Daniel Island its home has a $700,000 purse this year, and they are having 'million dollar' weather. Cool temperatures in the morning and evenings and sunshine all day long are making out of town visitors gush over the natural beauty of the Lowcountry. While the 11th seed in the Family Circle Cup fell in first round action, all of the other top seeds have so far advanced through the second round of action. Fan favorite Patty Schnyder surrendered her first set to challenger C. Scheepers but came back to win the next two sets and advance. The #2 seed Jelena Jankovic, a past champion, returned to the stadium court yesterday and advanced. Melanie Oudin of USA played on the stadium court for the first of the weekday night matches in front of about 6000 spectators. Wednesday matches begin at 10 a.m. when 8th seed Daniela Hantuchova plays A. Morita of Japan. The top-seeded Caroline Wozniacki plays on the stadium court at 11:30 a.m. and last year's runner-up has high hopes to win this tournament. For the latest live scoring information visit the Internet at And check out the line up for Saturday night's Game, Set, Rock exhibition tennis match with music by the Blue Dogs!

To view my blog entry on the 2010 FCC first round click here.

PhotosByJeffDennis: Caroline Wozniacki gives a television interview during media day; The Family Circle Cup has a lawn section set up for dining and happy hour; Past Champion Jelena Jankovic (seated) visits with local media

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

2010 Family Circle Cup tennis - First Round

The Family Circle Cup is a premiere stop on the WTA tour and is celebrating its tenth year in Charleston. The tournament has a rich history dating back to the 1970's when Chris Evert won five Family Circle Cup's in a row, while the tournament was being held on Hilton Head Island. The first round matches are being played on four different courts with tournament play starting at 10 a.m. each day. Beginning with tuesday night there will also be evening matches that begin at 7 p.m. that are offered with a reduced price for attendance. In Monday matches 9th seed Alona Bondarenko of the Ukraine defeated the USA's Julie Ditty in straight sets. The 12th seed Aleksandra Wozniak of Canada defeated the USA's Lilia Osterloh in straight sets, but the American pushed hard to win the second set. Down 4 games to 1 in the second set Osterloh broke service to get to 4 games to 2, and then battled all the way to force a tiebreak. The American actually led the tiebreak, up 6 to 3, and looked unflappable before some unforced errors and a superior shot by Wozniack that clipped the baseline and brought the tiebreak to 6-all. The crowd began to cheer Osterloh, but also rooted for the level of competitive tennis on center court with deep, full and fluid strokes on display. Wozniak advanced to play again on Tuesday and all the top ranked seeds will be playing Tuesday as well. For the latest pairings and tournament information visit the Internet at

To view past blog entries from the Family Circle Cup click here: 20132012201120102009

PhotosByJeffDennis: First Round play was well attended on the Althea Gibson Court; Daniela Hantuchova is interviewed by Sue Detar of the Daniel Island News; spectators can view players up close when they are on the practice courts

Monday, April 12, 2010

Z-man lures of Charleston - Capt. John Ward

Z-Man lures are made right here in North Charleston and thanks goes to Daniel Nussbaum of Z-man for putting me on the boat with Capt. John Ward of Affinity Charters.

For past blog entries on Capt. John Ward click here.

PhotoByJeffDennis: Captain John Ward of Affinity Charters with a backwaters redfish.
PhotoByJohnWard: Jeff managed to catch one too!