CREIGHTON ISLAND FLY-IN SETS A HIGH BAR
RAF Ambassador Eric Davis reports that the weather they had for the first of the series of Creighton Island fly-ins, held in April, was perfect for exploring this unique place. Folks from Florida and Georgia flew in, including RAF South Carolina Liaison Bill Repucci and his son Turner.
Saturday was a day of exploration. Some harvested oysters from the boat dock during low tide. Eric spent Saturday with a couple of Creighton Island stalwarts removing nearly a ton of palm tree root balls from the south end of the runway. “I’m happy to report that once we remove the remaining pine tree stump, and the area is backfilled and smoothed, we’ll increase the runway length an additional fifty to one hundred feet,” he said.
Visitors were greeted by island owner Frank Williams, who had spent Thursday filling in holes in the runway. After setting up camp, everyone convened at the pavilion for cocktail hour and dinner. As the sun set, the group huddled around the campfire and watched the near-full moon rise through the expansive network of moss-covered Live Oaks.
As the afternoon drew to a close, the gang freshened up with hot showers, then hitched the hay trailer to the John Deere tractor, loaded cold beer and snacks and enjoyed a leisurely tour of the island. Driving slowly along the island’s only road, they were regaled with stories of its history. The island was inhabited by Native Americans before and during the Colonial period. The entire eastern portion of the island was clear-cut by slaves for a cotton plantation. “It was hard to imagine there was once a clear view to the river and Sapelo Island beyond, given the dense forest and canopy enveloping us today,” Eric mused.
They explored the extreme north end of the island where the slave village was. Oddly, it remains a vast open, grassy area to this day. “It’s not hard to find remnants of structures that have long since disappeared as well as the occasional piece of pottery,” Eric said.
For Saturday dinner, the group was treated to fresh oysters, covered in wet moss and steamed over the fire pit.
Sunday morning they broke camp and cleaned the area, “leaving it better than we found it. Everyone pitched in and helped fly out our waste from the weekend,” Eric said. They landed at neighboring St. Simons Island for breakfast before each headed their separate ways.
“This first weekend set a high bar for the remaining summer fly-ins,” Eric said. “I hope more pilots will visit this truly special place. If you’re not sure you can fly in, get in touch with me. We can make arrangements to boat you over or fly you in from Brunswick Golden Isles (KBQK) or St. Simons Island (KSSI).
Submitted on May 5, 2018
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