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The two RV Gypsies
enjoyed a Tree Spirit Scavenger Hunt
on St. Simons Island, Georgia
April 13, 2021

USA map showing location of Georgiamap showing locaion of Glynn County, Georgia

St. Simons Island is a barrier island in Glynn County, Georgia, located on the southeast Georgia coast, midway between Savannah and Jacksonville. It is the largest of Georgia's renowned Golden Isles (along with Sea Island, Jekyll Island and privately owned Little St. Simons Island). The two RV Gypsies were also on St. Simons Island in 2010 and 2014 and each of those times, they went to the Lighthouse. Fort Frederica is also located on St, Simons Island.

Welcome to St. Simons Island Georgia sign

In the early 1980s, a skilled craftsman, Keith Jennings set out on a mission to leave his mark on St. Simons Island. With woodworking tools in hand, he meticulously carved intricate faces into several centuries-old live oak trees. Each tree took between two to four days to complete. There are more than 20 Tree Spirits here, but many are on private property. Only 7 are in public area.

The two RV Gypsies enjoyed this scavenger hunt and found all 7 of the public Tree Spirits, which began at the Visitor Center with Tree Spirit #1. Although the Visitor Center at 529 Beachview Drive was closed when the two RV Gypsies arrived, a brochure with a list of the trees was in a box at the doorway. The first 3 can be a walking experience. The others a car ride or biking experience.

Mallery Park sign Golden Isles Tree Spirit sign
Below quotes from

Item #1: A mystifying mermaid named Cora lived in the sea of the Golden Isles for centuries but was rarely seen by anyone. She had sun-kissed skin and hair that shines. Cora is the protector of the island's loggerhead turtles. She gently guides them with a sweet humming sound to and from the shoreline, then leads them out to sea, protecting them from any harm. This is why the island's endangered loggerhead hatchlings grow and survive into adulthood.

Tree Spirit #1 -Cora the Mermaid Karen Duquette and Cora the Mermaid

The two RV Gypsies walked to Mallery Park where they found Tree Spirits #2 and #3. But first, they enjoyed the beauty of some old live oak trees.

Mallery Park sign live oak trees at Mallery Park
live oak trees at Mallery Park live oak trees at Mallery Park

Below: The two RV Gypsies found Tree Spirt #2 was by the Baseball Field at Mallery Park. They thought it looked like a monkey face.

Tree Spirit #2 Tree Spirit #2

Below: The two RV Gypsies found Tree Spirit #3 was by the Basketball Court at Mallery Park. Legend has it that the images are of countless sailors who lost their lives at sea aboard the mighty sailing ships that were made from the St. Simons Island oak trees.

Tree Spirit #3

The two RV Gypsies got in their car to search for Tree Spirit #4. The brochure gave them a GPS address at Redfern Village, but their GPS would not take the address, but they did manage to find it. It was hard to spot because it really did not look like a carving to the two RV Gypsies. It just looked like an ugly burl with a hole in the center. It was across the street from the Gnats Landing Restaurant where the bulldog statue was also spotted.

Tree Spirit #4 Bulldog statue

Back in their car, the two RV Gypsies drove to a housing area, Magnolia Manor, 101 Heritage Drive to find Tree Spirit #5. This was some kind of a face with a big no;se, closed eyes, and the mouth looked like it did not fare well through the years.

Tree Spirit #5

Tree Spirit #6 was in front of the Anderson Fine Art Gallery at 3305 Frederica (which was closed). Unfortunately, the face was all smashed in. Hopefully by tree rot, not by vandalization.

Tree Spirit #6 damaged

Tree Spirit #7 was the hardest to find at Gascoigne Bluff Park because there were a lot of trees and it was not one of the first trees they came to. Actually the two RV Gypsies were lucky enough to get a hint from some nice local guys who where playing ball at the park, so they found it quickly enough.

Tree Sprit #7

Near Tree Spirit #7, the two RV Gypsies noticed the beginning of a beautiful sunset. But they did not stick around to watch the sunset as long as they would have liked to because they were ready to go find some dinner.

sunset at Gascoigne Bluff Park sunset at Gascoigne Bluff Park
sunset at Gascoigne Bluff Park

look below

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