Lowcountry dog park tour: Isle of Palms Bark Park

The IOP Bark Park is a decently sized fenced in dog park located just behind the IOP Recreation Center, and so far is the only dog park that features a separate small dog area.

IOP Bark Park

The Bark Park isn’t very large, about the same size as Ackerman dog park. It’s fairly wide open though and offers a lot of room for dogs to run around. Benches provide plenty of places for people to sit, and several trees provide shady spots during hot weather.

The small dog area is a long narrow strip adjacent to the main dog park. There were no small dogs around when I was there, so I’m not sure how often it gets used. Looks like it would be a good place for people with smaller dogs that don’t want to risk them getting bowled over by bigger dogs. Most of the small dogs I’ve seen though play just fine with big dogs.

Small dog area

There’s no water fountain installed in the dog park, but a large bucket in each area provides water. The water comes from a hose running from the Rec center to the dog park. Filling the bucket requires walking out of the dog park over to the building to turn the water on.

Water bucket

There are a few sandy areas where dogs can plop down to relax, cool down or work out some of their digging urges.

See the rest of the IOP Bark Park photos.

A Google Map to the IOP Bark Park.

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Lowcountry dog park tour: Hazel Parker dog park

Located on the peninsula just a block or so down from Tradd and East Bay in Hazel Parker Playground (70 East Bay St), the dog park is a smallish rectangular fenced in gravel area with several benches strategically located underneath the trees provide a spot for people to sit and relax, and over in the corner is a water fountain.

Although the park is fairly long, it would still be pretty easy to throw a ball too far and out of the dog park, especially with the aid of a Chuck-it. The park would be very well suited for smaller dogs and dogs that aren’t that much into running around. People with more active dogs would probably find more satisfaction (as would their dogs) heading to one of the larger dog parks like the one at Hampton Park or James Island County Park.

Lowcountry dog park tour: Bark Park at Riverfront Park

To be honest, I was a little bit disappointed with the dog park at Riverfront Park in North Charleston, especially considering how nice and spacious the rest of the park is. The Bark Park almost seemed like an afterthought in comparison. It’s like someone took an area of the park that wasn’t much good for anything else and said “Let’s make a dog park out of it”. However, I suppose it’s better than nothing.

The Bark Park is quite a small fenced in area. There’s a dog-lock style gate, but whoever put together the gates and latches didn’t do it very well and I don’t think they measured things out all that accurately either for the outer gate. As a result it would be pretty easy for dogs to push their way past both gates and get loose if the inner gate isn’t closed properly.

Unlike all the other dog parks we’ve visited so far, there is no water fountain installed in the park. Instead, there are a couple of watering stations provided that are starting to look a little green with algae growth. They also collect whatever happens to fall from the trees. IMO the lack of water fountain is quite a significant oversight. Hopefully they’re just temporary and a permanent water fountain is in the works. In the meantime, I’d recommend bringing your own water and bowl for your dogs.

There are benches along the side for people to sit on, and trees provide plenty of shade. They also drop lots of pecans for dogs to crunch on (probably not a good thing for dogs to do).

One very nice feature the dog park has are the agility type jumps and tunnel. Since there’s not a whole lot of room for dogs to run, these provide a fun way for dog owners to engage and interact with their dogs.

Panorama view of the park from the entrance gate

Panorama view of the park from the other end

See the rest of my pictures from the day here.

Here’s a Google Map for Riverfront Park. Riverfront Park is located in North Charleston on the site of the former Naval Yard.

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Lowcountry dog park tour: Wannamaker County Park

The dog park at Wannamaker County Park is the third on the list of dog parks located in a Charleston County park.

The dog park has been open for close to two years now, and provides a fairly large wide open space for dogs to run and stretch their legs.

The pond/mud pit that used to be open is now fenced off with a gate so you can let your dog in to romp around the mud/water if you wish. A sign asks people to keep the gate closed so people who don’t want to go home with a wet muddy dog can keep their dog out of the water.

If you do let your dog play in the mud/water, there’s a hose available to spray him off with.

Picnic tables provide plenty of places for people to sit down and watch their dogs, or you can hang out on the concrete walkway along the fence on one side of the dog park. The trees provide a bit of shade there for sunny days.

Admission to Wannamaker County Park is $1/person and once you’re in you can make use of the dog park, go wandering around the trails afterwards or bring the whole family and have a picnic. Frequent visitors to the park(or any of the other county parks) will want to consider purchasing a park pass for unlimited admissions. To get to the dog park, just follow the road once you’re past the entrance gate (the road goes around the water park). You’ll see signs pointing to the dog park.

You can see the rest of the pictures here.

Here’s a Google Map to the dog park

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Lowcountry dog park tour: Palmetto Islands County Park

The next stop on the dog park tour takes us to the second of three dog parks located in a Charleston County Park: Palmetto Islands County Park in Mt. Pleasant. The dog park here is relatively new, having opened in 2007. It’s a fairly large fenced in dog park located next to the fenced in area used by the Lowcountry Dog Agility group (this area is not part of the dog park). Dual dog lock type gates provide good flow for dogs entering and leaving the park. The park is somewhat narrow but very long giving you plenty of room for long ball throws and lots of room for dogs to run around in.

For people, a couple of bleachers provide plenty of seating space as do several picnic benches around the perimeter.

Two sandy areas serve as nice soft spots for dogs to wrestle, dig or plop down to rest.

The park is pretty near to the marshes, so as a result the water table is pretty close to the surface. This means when the ground gets wet, it tends to stay that way for a while and things can get a little muddy in spots, especially near the fence. Fortunately there’s a hose positioned near the water fountain so you can hose off muddy dogs if necessary.

Admission to Palmetto Islands County Park is $1/person. Frequent visitors to the park (or any of the other county parks) will want to consider purchasing a park pass for unlimited admissions. Since the dog park is within the park, once you’re in you also have access to the rest of Palmetto Islands County Park, which is quite large and has plenty of walking trails.

See the rest of my pictures of the dog park here.

Here’s a Google Map to Palmetto Islands County Park. The dog park is just inside the entrance to the park. Take the first right after you get past the admission booth and you’ll see the dog park in front of you.

View Palmetto Islands County Park dog park in a larger map