United States Coast Guard– and CPR-certified captain David Lane leads poling pairs into Charleston's coastal tides during four-hour inshore-fishing outings. Aboard Captain Lane's 17-foot Mitzi skiff, guests delve restlessly through rippling ebbs in search of redfish, speckled trout, and flounder. Depending on the tide, season, and customer preference, each trek will aim to coax gilled adversaries from subaquatic nooks by tossing out baits, lures, or exclusive invites to prestigious fish fries. Additionally, Captain Lane channels his extensive knowledge of the surrounding regions to unmask fish-rich havens, such as the oyster banks of Wando River and various marshes. All equipment—including rods, reels, and licenses—is provided, but duos are encouraged to tote along their own refreshments and cameras, as well as sunglasses to deflect the glare of water and sunbathing toads.
The team of fellow certified captains share their fishing knowledge and intimacy of local waterways with guests of The Reel Deal Charters. Carefully following the seasonal eco-system to make sure customers have access to biting fish, their expeditions whisk passengers away on inshore hunts for red drum, trout, sheepshead, and sunken pirate ships. Fleets also cruise the water banks and oyster beds at low tides.Fiberglass replicas of caught fish are also available, leaving the fish unharmed in the process.
The Reel Deal's captains also organize trips to search for blue crabs and fish for sharks during warmer months, and explore local beaches and marshes. They also narrate sightseeing tours that pass by Fort Sumter and the USS Yorktown or natural sights such as feasting pelicans and ospreys soaring overhead. All excursions take place aboard fleet of boats that each accommodates up to six passengers with licenses, tackle, and a variety of both live and artificial bait.
Captain Howard, the man at the helm of Adventure Harbor Tours, has an inherent attraction to the water. The second he steps out onto his boat he finds less dread, more excitement, and a desire to share this joy with others. As the voices of Jimmy Buffett and Bob Marley sing from his boat's onboard stereo, Captain Howard ferries groups of up to 12 out into Charleston Harbor, where Atlantic bottlenose dolphins swim beneath the surface and one lonely scuba diver guards the harbor's flush valve. The captain's expeditions can take the form of private charters, fishing charters, or his most popular trip: a tour of Morris Island.
Untouched by cars or roads, Morris Island welcomes visitors onto secluded beaches filled with shells, sand dollars, and conchs. The 4-mile barrier island allows ample room for visitors to pick these shells, play in the sand, or run alongside their dogs—which Captain Howard welcomes onto his tours.
After 30 years of owning and operating a construction business, Ken Recine decided it was time for a career change, trading his tool belt for a captain’s hat. He first developed a passion for navigating aquatic avenues in the early ‘80s, when he helped man his family’s 40-foot Pacemaker boat. Now a USCG-licensed charter captain, Ken helms a 40-foot pleasure yacht of his own on saltwater cruises that explore Charleston's historic waterways. His passengers soak in picturesque views and sites—such as Fort Sumter—during jaunts around the harbor and overnight voyages from Mount Pleasant to Beaufort. In addition to standard tours, Ken offers customizable trips to Georgetown, Myrtle Beach, Savannah, or wherever the big black X is on clients’ “tourist” maps.
At CRAFT, both rookie and veteran pilots take to the skies without ever leaving the ground inside the realistic, full-motion Redbird FMX flight simulator. Approved by the FAA as an Advanced Aviation Training Device, the simulator tricks future pilots with wrap-around visuals, an enclosed cockpit, and quick-change configurations. Its electric motion platform pitches, rolls, and yaws like a real airplane, and scenario-based programs let pilots choose different challenges, such as navigating through inclement weather or dodging runaway reindeer. Throughout visits, certified flight instructors offer advice, ensuring experienced pilots can advance their training, and new pilots are properly prepared when they transition to the real thing.
Sealand Adventure Sports’ kite- and paddleboarding classes, tours, and rentals allow clients to take to whitewater crests like a fish to chips. Paddleboards and kiteboards cut through the waves across the Sullivan’s Island beach as riders take rentals on the water and practice basic techniques during beginner’s lessons taught by PASA-certified instructors. Paddleboard tours explore salt marshes at a slow pace on flat water so boarders can keep an eye out for great blue heron, and osprey. Sealand also maintains a weather outlook on their website that includes temperature reports, wind speed and gusts, wave height, and the chances of mermaid spottings.