Charleston Lifestyle and the Weather, Enjoy the Outdoors Year-Round…and what about flooding?

One of the reasons so many people are choosing to move to the Charleston Area is the weather.   If you’re from up north, you already know you’ve had some pretty brutal winters recently.  And if you’re from the South, as in Florida, the market is flooded, no pun intended, with people trying to get away from Hurricane Alley, but sill have nice weather.  If you want specific stats, start with  On the right hand side, you’ll see a link to Charleston Weather.  You can look up all the info you want right there.  Cara and I are Realtors, so we have a very flexible schedule.  We are not workaholics, and love to have fun, so while we might be working most weekends, we’re apt to blow off a Wednesday to go downtown, or to one of the dozens of local trails and take a hike.  On our fun “to-do  list” is to take the ferry over to Bull’s Island and have a picnic.  It’s a little pricey, at $30/person, but to spend the day will be worth it.  We also might just skip the ferry and trailer the boat down to Mt Pleasasnt and just go there by boat. 

So, even with the weather channel and the weather website, people still like to ask me about the weather, and about flooding.  I love it when people ask me about the summers.  IT’S FRICKIN’ HOT, OK?   Hot and sticky, about the same as up north in the middle of summer, except it lasts from as early as late April, and as late as late October.  It can be in the 90’s.  The humidity is almost always over 80%.  I remember training in the Army with these big wrestler/football player types from Minnesota, and they dropped like flies.  If you aren’t used to being out in hot weather, you need to be careful.  Heat Exhaustion is no fun, and Heat Stroke is dangerous.  It happens.  If you are going to enjoy the outdoors, you need three things in your car at all times.  First, all the convenience stores sell cases of Dasani 16.9 once bottles for about 6 bucks.  I always have plenty of water in my car.  Two other essentials are extra strength bug spray, the rankest stuff you can find, and sun screen, SPF1000.  Optional accessories might include a rain coat and/or umbrella.  Although some of our favorite memories are of when we were caught outside and got soaking wet. 

What about Flooding?   They don’t call it The Low Country for nothin’.  That being said, we don’t have a huge lake ten feet over our heads like New Orleans.  Downtown Charleston living rooms had 3 feet of water in them during Hugo, but we have plenty of high ground property.  Flood Zone “X” is what you’re looking for…no flood insurance required, and with this designation, flood insurance is pretty inexpensive, and you should buy it.  So basically, if you ever get flooded, it will be a huge pain, but not life threatening.  There should be no circumstances under which you would end up swimming through toxic muck like in New Orleans, unless you’re an idiot, and you ride out the storm downtown or on one of the barrier islands.  Even there, the flood waters will leave about as quick as they came. 

Life Threatening Conditions are pretty much everywhere.  The cold in the north is dangerous.  Anywhere in the country is subject to tornadoes.  The West Coast has wild fires and earth quakes, although we’re do for an earthquake here as well.  We have a fault line running right through Summerville.  Summerville survived Hugo pretty well as far as hurricane winds went, but my neighborhood, Kings Grant, was tore up by a tornado.  We also have alligators and lots of poisonous snakes, although incidents of attacks and serous bites are fairly rare, usually some drunk that watched too many Steve Irwin episodes.  Alligators and Water Moccasins are deathly afraid of humans over three feet tall.  Watch out for the little ones and little doggies though. 

Charleston is all about lifestyle.  The zoning here stinks, and much of South Carolina is pretty sprawley, with mobile home parks and ugly commercial buildings spread around most major avenues.  Moving to Charleston is about lifestyle, being near all kinds of water, having great weather in which to enjoy the outdoors year-round.  Anytime you’re looking for something healthy to do to have fun and kill a few hours, all you have to do is get on your bike, or jump in your car, and ride a few minutes, and you can be hiking around an amazing selection of beautiful sites and scenary.  You can bike, hike, canoe, surf, sail, motor boat, run, jog, stroll, drive, swim, trot, ride any evening, weekend, afternoon, morning, noon, or night, Spring, Winter, Summer or Fall.  Speaking of night, one of Cara and I’s favorite stories involved a late night boat ride.  I had remembered from being in the Army, how bright it was when there was moon light, and told Cara, “Don’t worry honey, with the moonlight, we’ll be fine.”  So, we decided to boat from Oakbrook Landing down to Middleton Plantation to listen to the Spoleto Festival finale, and watch the fireworks.  Well guess what?  Jim didn’t check the newspapwer to see if there was going to be any moon lite, and there was no moon out that night.  It was as black as black could be.  We started getting nervous, and headed back early.  We only had the boat about 3 weeks, and didn’t have any kind of flash light, and certainly not a flood light to guide our way…so we inched back the 10 miles back to the landing with one minor detour.  There was really only one place to take a wrong turn and we took it.  The waterway started getting really narrow, and we heard all these frogs ribbetting away and jumping in the water as we approached.  Pretty eary.  Well, we got turned around headed back in the right direction, and finally made it back.  Cara was a little scared, but kept a good attitude that night thankfully, so the memory is a good one. 

There are lots of stories…the time a big alligator jumped in front of us while we were pulling our friend Anthony on a wakeboard.  The time the boat ran out of gas, and the biggest frickin yacht we’d ever seen gave us the gas from their dingey, which was almost as big as our boat.  The different times we ran into sand bars.  And the time Zachary and Jason got pulled upstream by the fast tide, I floated after them to calm them down, and Cara got the ski rope tangled up in the prop trying to run after us. 

We absolutely love living in Charleston, and look forward to sharing it with you. 


2 responses to “Charleston Lifestyle and the Weather, Enjoy the Outdoors Year-Round…and what about flooding?

  1. As you know i have been seriously considering to charleston.however, after reading this blog with all the negatives,floods,earthquakes,long humidity,sankes etc. florida is looking better and better.
    Yes,fl. has hurricanes and some sankes, but have never heard of any poision snakes or alligators jumping out in the road, as you described. And the heat starts in june and ends in early oct. not like you described in charleston,and certainly no earthquakes. FL. has no personal income tax and no personal property tax, like charleston.
    i found your blog very negative and certainly not very inviting.Have to think twice or even three times before makeing a move to charleston based on your information.


  2. Read the headline. Spend some time in downtown Charleston. Thanks for your comments. Maybe Florida is the place for you.

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