The Protected Lands of the Lowcountry
Click a focus area above to learn more. Download a complete map of the Protected Lands of the Lowcounty (PDF).
South Carolina Coastal Focus Areas
South Lowcountry Focus Area
The South Lowcountry Focus Area, referred to as "SoLo," includes nearly 2,000,000 acres in an area from Hardeeville to the south, Aiken to the north, the Savannah River to the west and the Salkehatchie and Broad rivers to the east.
ACE Basin Focus Area
The ACE Basin (Ashepoo, Combahee and Edisto Rivers) Focus Area encompasses 1.7 million acres of upland and wetland habitat along the coast of South Carolina between Charleston and Beaufort and is one of the largest intact coastal ecosystems on the East Coast.
Ashley River Initiative
The Ashley River Initiative area is rich in significant historic and ecological resources. The Ashley River itself is part of a National Historic District and has been designated a State Scenic River.
The Cooper-Wando Initiative covers a predominantly rural area also rich in historic significance, particularly related to rice culture history. It has important ecological significance as well, including extensive longleaf pine forests and wetland systems in and around the Francis Marion National Forest.
Sea Islands Initiative
The Sea Islands Initiative area covers critical maritime and estuarine habitat. It has a long tradition of agriculture, most notably for the production of sea island cotton.
Santee Cooper Lakes
The Santee Cooper Lakes Focus Area encompasses Lake Marion and Lake Moultrie in the coastal plain of South Carolina and is comprised of 863,458 acres. The region supports a wide diversity of habitats, and thus, a wide diversity of species.
The 549,000-acre Santee Basin Focus Area includes portions of five counties along the Santee River from Lake Moultrie to the Atlantic Ocean. This Focus Area includes all of the Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge and portions of the Francis Marion National Forest.
The 525,000-acre Winyah Bay Focus Area covers the lower drainage of the Black, Great Pee Dee, Little Pee Dee, Sampit and Waccamaw rivers and their confluence into Winyah Bay itself. Together, these waterways form the third largest estuarine watershed on the East Coast.
Outside Coastal Focus Areas
Over the past 20 years, the area of lands that Lowcountry Land Trust protects has begun to expand to locations farther from Charleston and the coast, reaching towards the northern edges of the coastal plain.