South Carolina Trip Reports

South Carolina Photos

Table Rock & The Mountain Bridge Wilderness



Some of South Carolina's finest hiking is located in Table Rock State Park, Caesar's Head State Park, and Jones Gap State Park. Caesar's Head and Jones Gap comprise the Mountain Bridge Wilderness. One fork of the Foothills Trail starts at Table Rock, while the other begins in Jones Gap. The two branches meet near Sassafrass Mountain, the highest peak in South Carolina. From there, the Foothills Trail continues west to Lake Jocassee and wanders through the Jocassee Gorges in North Carolina. It returns to South Carolina along the wild waters of the Chattooga River before ending at Oconee State Park. Some hikes we've done in these areas include:

Photos from a January, 2021 hike with Jack to Mountain Cat Falls and Eden Falls near Rocky Bottom.    (Photos)
Photos from a May hike with Christy in Ashmore Heritage Preserve. We circled Ashmore Lake and hiked up to Green Mountain to look for petroglyphs.    (Photos)
Photos from a March Team Waterfall weekend in Pickens County, SC. On Saturday, Christy, Jennifer, Thomas, Kitty, Jack, Kyle, Johnny, John, and I hiked to Tower Falls on Laurel Branch. The next day, Christy and I hiked to Deception Falls on Laurel Creek.    (Photos)
My January, 2020 hike with Christy to the cliffs and petroglpyhs on Pinnacle Mountain     (Photos)
My December, 2019 bushwhack with Jennifer along an unnamed stream in Jones Gap State Park.     (Photos)
My November, 2019 hike with Jennifer and the dogs to several waterfalls on Emory Creek.     (Photos)
My March, 2019 Team Waterfall camping weekend with Darrin, Jack, Thomas, Kitty, Bob, Jimmy, and Sean, featuring a hike to the waterfall on Buck Hollow.     (Photos)
Our January, 2019 Team Waterfall hike to Headforemost Falls, near Jones Gap State Park, SC.     (Photos)
Our May, 2018 hikes with Team Waterfall in Greenville County SC.    (Photos)
In February 2018, I joined an off-trail hike with Josh, his son Link, Darrin, Spencer, Bob, Sean, Stan, and Wally to a bunch of waterfalls in upstate SC.    (Photos)
My January 2018 exploration of Project Aye with Spencer, Scott, and Darrin in the mountains of South Carolina. It was a Team Waterfall classic! First we climbed up an unnamed creek, passing five undocumented waterfalls along the way. Then we bushwhacked over a mountain that was loaded with crazy cliffs and big views. Then we descended another creek, down through a band of cliffs and into a canyon full of house-sized boulders riddled with fissure caves. We found the most exciting waterfalls of the day along that creek.     (Photos)
My August, 2017 dayhike with Brenda and Jennifer up Eastatoe Creek and Rocky Bottom Creek, featuring 3 slot canyons and several waterfalls!     (Photos)
My December, 2016 hike with Darrin in the Mountain Bridge Wilderness. Photos.
Photos from a March, 2016 exploratory hike to some waterfalls in Greenville County, SC:     (Photos)
Photos from my January, 2016 exploratory hike with Darrin, Bob, Bob's son Aaron, and Jake near Jones Gap State Park, SC. We found several previously undocumented waterfalls and two cliffs with great views. photos.
Photos from our July, 2015 backpacking trip and 4th of July celebration, Fire Ant on the Mountain, in SC: 4th of July photos.
Photos from a short hike with Spencer, Stephanie, Dillon, and Lauren to Cedar Falls.
Photos from a short hike with Spencer to Spencer's Rock.
Josh's report on our dayhike with Darrin featuring a grand tour of Raven Cliff Falls.     (My Photos).
My April, 2014 dayhike with Bob, his son Aaron, and the dogs, on the Foothills Trail from Sassafras Mountain to Drawbar Cliffs.     (Photos).
My February, 2014 dayhike and trail maintenance with Darrin, Darrin's son, Evan, Brenda, Van, and the dogs from the Pinnacle Pass Trailhead on highway 276 old Camp Spearhead, with a side trip to Mashbox Falls.     (Photos).
My February, 2014 dayhike with Christy, Van, and the dogs from Jones Gap to Rainbow Falls after a lengthy cold spell.     (Photos).
My November, 2013 dayhike with Darrin, Jack, Brenda, Nina, Sherron, and the dogs to an undocumented waterfall on Asbury Hills Camp property.     (Photos).
My June, 2013 dayhike with Darrin from Jones Gap State Park to old Camp Spearhead. We explored the cataract bog on the Pinnacle Pass Trail along the way.     (Photos).
My April, 2013 camping trip with Darrin in Jones Gap State Park, with dayhikes in and near the Mountain Bridge Wilderness.     (Photos).
My April, 2013 dayhike in the Nature Conservancy's Nine Times Preserve.     (Photos).
My March, 2013 dayhike with Darrin and Mitch on the Palmetto Trail from Table Rock State Park to some obscure waterfalls on Rachael Creek.     (Photos).
My March, 2013 exploratory hike with Jack and Brenda to a series of previously undocumented waterfalls along Little Fall Creek.     (Photos).
My February, 2013 hike with Christy in Paris Mountain State Park .     (Photos).
My January, 2013 hike with Jack to Mashbox Falls, Misty Falls, Boone's Falls, and Chute Falls in Caesar's Head and Jones Gap State Parks.     (Photos).
My January, 2013 hike with Brenda, Darrin, and the dogs on the Hospital Rock and Fall Creek Falls Trails in Jones Gap State Park. We narrowly avoided a tragedy on this hike, as my dog Boone fell over a 70' waterfall. Incredibly, he wasn't injured.     (Photos).
My June, 2012 visit with Jack and Darrin to Sweet Thing on Slickum Creek, after a day of hiking at Connestee Falls near Brevard, NC.     (Photos).
My May, 2012 dayhike with Jack on the Pinnacle Pass Trail in the Mountain Bridge Wilderness. We hiked to an unusual mountain cascade bog where we found Pitcher Plants, Sundew, Orchids, Indian Paintbrush, and other rare plants and flowers.     (Photos).
My March, 2012 dayhike with Jack and Brenda to previously undocumented waterfalls on Tankersley Branch near the Mountain Bridge Wilderness.     (Photos).
Brenda's report on our March, 2012 dayhike with Christy, Jack, and Johnny to the Chestnut Ridge Heritage Preserve     (Photos).
My February, 2012 dayhike with Jack to rarely visited waterfalls on Head Foremost Creek in the Mountain Bridge Wilderness.     (Photos).
My January, 2012 dayhike with Jack, Bob S, Johnny, and Brenda on the Palmetto Trail west of Table Rock State Park. We visited 7 or 8 waterfalls on the hike, all but one of which are on Rachael Creek or its tributaries. Most of the waterfalls we visited, including Yucca Falls, are off-trail and require serious bushwhacking to reach.     (Photos).
My April, 2011 dayhike with Jack and Brenda on the Palmetto Trail from Table Rock State Park to highway 178     (Photos).
My March, 2011 dayhike with Jack and Johnny to two obscure waterfalls in the Chestnut Ridge Heritage Preserve     (Photos).
My May, 2010 dayhike with Jack from Jones Gap SP to Rainbow Falls, Headforemost Falls, and Fall Creek Falls     (Photos).
My solo, March, 2010 car camping trip to Brasstown Falls featuring dayhikes to Long Creek Falls and Raven Cliff Falls     (Photos).
My January, 2009 dayhike with Dave in Jones Gap State Park to Rainbow Falls.     (Photos)
My solo, April 2008 backpacking trip to Table Rock     (Photos).
My solo, January, 2008 dayhike to Sassafras Mountain, as I hiked the Foothills Trail from Laurel Valley. I also visited Twin Falls, Eastatoe Gorge, and Eastatoe Falls (in NC) that day.     (Photos)
My November, 2005 dayhike with Jack to Moonshine Falls and Raven Cliff Falls in the Mountain Bridge Wilderness.
Our November, 2004 dayhike to Hospital Rock in Jones Gap State Park.
Our November, 2002 dayhike to Hospital Rock and Symes Chapel.
Our April, 2000 car camping trip to Table Rock State Park with dayhikes to Table Rock and Raven Cliff Falls.
Our first dayhike in the Mountain Bridge Wilderness, on the Rim of the Gap Trail, In October, 1999.

Table Rock from Caesar's Head





Lake Jocassee & The Chattooga River



Farther west, the wild rivers of the Jocassee gorges spill into Lake Jocassee. Beyond the lake, the wild and scenic Chattooga River of "Deliverance" fame tumbles from the mountains of North Carolina, forming the border of South Carolina and Georgia. Both areas feature fantastic hiking. Some of the hikes we've done in these areas include:

Photos from a November, 2020 hike with Christy to the Eastatoe Creek Narrows.    (Photos)
Photos from an April backpacking trip with Christy and the dogs in the Ellicott Rock Wilderness. We made a loop combining the Fork Mountain, Chattooga River, and Foothills Trails.     (Photos)
Photos from an exploratory March hike with Christy to Cooley Creek in the Jocassee Gorges.     (Photos)
Photos from a March Team Waterfall weekend in Pickens County, SC. On Saturday, Christy, Jennifer, Thomas, Kitty, Jack, Kyle, Johnny, John, and I hiked to Tower Falls on Laurel Branch. The next day, Christy and I hiked to Deception Falls on Laurel Creek.    (Photos)
My January, 2020 hikes with Jennifer, Jack, Ryan, Thomas, and Bob to waterfalls on Laurel Creek in Pickens County.     (Photos)
My September, 2019 hike with Jennifer to Eastatoe Creek and Rocky Bottom Creek.     (Photos)
My March, 2019 hikes (2) with Christy to a spectacular waterfall on Cane Creek.     (Photos)
Our April, 2019 Spring trip, featuring:
A visit to Isaqueena Falls and a short hike to Yellow Branch Falls.     (Photos)
A 2-day kayaking trip on Lake Jocassee.     (Photos)
Short hikes to Brasstown Falls and Sids Falls and a short kayaking trip on Lake Hartwell to Longnose Creek Falls.     (Photos)
A 2-day kayaking trip on Lake Tugalo, with a hike to some waterfalls on Bad Creek in Georgia.     (Photos)
Our November, 2018 camping trip in the Jocassee Gorges area, featuring hikes to Lower Whitewater Falls, Virginia Hawkins Falls, and Yucca Falls.     (Photos)
My March, 2017 dayhike with Team Waterfall to several waterfalls in Pickens County, SC. Photos.
My January, 2017 hike with Team Waterfall with Jennifer, Jennifer's husband Christer, Thomas, Kitty, and Beth to Emory Creek in Pickens County, SC. Photos.
My June, 2016 dayhike with Darrin, Scott, Jennifer, and the dogs up Opossum Creek. We started out with the hike to a great beach on the Chattooga River and then continued up to Opossum Creek Falls. From there we bushwhacked and creek walked upstream to Upossum Falls on Opossum Creek and Sid's Falls on Shoulder Bone Branch. We also discovered Sparkle Falls along the way!     (Photos)
Photos from another visit to the waterfalls on Rocky Bottom Creek in Pickens County, SC:     (Photos)
My February, 2016 dayhike with Jennifer and Brenda to explore the upper part of Rocky Bottom Creek. We found five major waterfalls that were previously undocumented! It was one of our biggest successes to date.     (Photos).
My February, 2016 dayhike with Jennifer and Brenda to the Eastatoe Gorge, including the discovery of Tower Falls and Nya's Falls on Laurel Branch.      Map     (Photos).
My November, 2015 dayhike with Johnny and the dogs to Sid's Falls, Long Creek Falls, and Riley Moore Falls in SC. Photos.
Team Waterfall's exploration of the Thompson and Whitewater Rivers. We river walked up the Thompson River from Lake Jocassee to Big Falls, bushwhacked to the base of Lower Whitewater Falls, and explored the upper Whitewater River's slot canyon.     (Photos).
My exploratory hike with Brenda and the dogs to several virtually unknown waterfalls and a cave on Wild Hog Creek near Rocky Bottom.     (Photos).
Photos from our March, 2015 1/2 day hike with Brenda, Johnny, and Cynthia to Pinnacle Falls on Abner Creek and 1/2 day hike with Brenda to the brink of Sassafras Falls. (Photos).
My March, 2015 dayhike with Brenda, Darrin, Mitch, Jack, Spencer, Stephanie, Dillon, Thomas, Kitty, and the dogs to Pinnacle Falls on Abner Creek near Rocky Bottom, followed by a visit to Bob's Place and a hike to Big Rock Mountain in the Nine Times Range.     (Photos).
The next weekend I returned to Pinnacle Falls with Christy, Brenda, Johnny, Cynthia, and the dogs. Afterwards Christy, Brenda, and I bushwhacked to the brink of Sassafras Falls. I returned to show the falls to Christy, Johnny, and Cynthia and to get better (Photos).
My February, 2015 solo dayhike to a mostly frozen Sassafras Falls near Rocky Bottom.     (Photos).
My December, 2014 dayhike with Darrin, Brenda, Jonathan, and Aidjoy auction winners John and Jennifer to Fall Creek Falls and the Chattooga River.     (Photos).
My March, 2014 dayhike with the dogs from the top of Twin Falls on Reedy Cove Creek to an obscure waterfall near Camp McCall.     (Photos).
My March, 2014 dayhike and waterfall discovery with Brenda on an unnamed tributary of Rocky Bottom Creek.     (Photos).
My January, 2014 dayhike with Darrin, Brenda, Van, Bob, and the dogs on the Foothills Trail to Virginia Hawkins Falls and Laurel Fork Falls.     (Photos).
My solo July, 2013 hikes to Sid's Falls and Brasstown Falls.     (Photos).
My February, 2013 car camping trip with a bunch of friends, including hikes to Yellow Branch Falls, Bee Cove, and two waterfalls in North Carolina.     (Yellow Branch Falls Photos).     (Crevice Falls Photos).     (Scotsman Creek Photos).     (Bee Cove Photos).
My August, 2012 car camping trip with Jack to Cherry Hill Campground, with a dayhike to some obscure waterfalls on Crane Creek.     (Photos).
My December, 2011 solo dayhikes to Brasstown Falls and Opossum Creek Falls.     (Photos).
My solo, February, 2010 backpacking trip along the Chattooga River from Russell Bridge (highway 28) to Kings Creek Falls.     (Photos).
My January, 2010 visit to Twin Falls.     (Photos).
My August, 2009 trip on Lake Jocassee with Jack and Johnny on Johnny's sailboat. That trip included camping at Rock Creek, in NC, & hikes to Wright Creek Falls, Moondance Falls, & Sky Falls.  - (Photos)
My short solo, February, 2009 dayhike to Riley Moore Falls.     (Photos).
My solo, January, 2009 dayhikes to several waterfalls in Oconee County.     (Photos)
A March, 2007 dayhike led by Jack in Devils Fork State Park. We actually did three short hikes that day, to view rare Oconee Bells, and to visit Station Cove Falls and Lee Falls.
My January, 2005 backpacking trip with Dave to the Ellicott Rock Wilderness from the Sloan Bridge picnic area.
Our January, 2000 backpacking trip along the Chattooga River to Ellicott Rock, where North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia all meet.

More trips in the Lake Jocassee area can be found on North Carolina's Jocassee Gorges page.
More trips upstream along the Chattooga River can be found on North Carolina's Nantahala National Forest page (Highlands section).
More trips downstream along the Chattooga River can be found on the Georgia page.

Long Creek Falls





Central & Eastern South Carolina



South Carolina has plenty to offer outside of the mountains, including black water swamps, large trees, and fine beaches. Some trips we've taken in the central and eastern parts of South Carolina include:

My June, 2019 paddling trip with Christy to see the Rocky Shoals Spider Lilies on the Catawba River.     (Photos)
Our three day kayaking trip to Capers Island, a barrier island on the coast north of Charleston.     (Photos)
Our kayaking trip on Cedar Creek Reservoir to Great Falls on the Catawba River.     (Photos)
Photos from a short hike with Spencer, Jo, Leigh, Preston, and Kyle to Van Patton Shoals on the Enoree River near Woodruff, SC.    (Photos)

My solo, June, 2014 hike & paddle to see the Rocky Shoals Spider Lilies in Landsford Canal State Park.     (Photos)
My solo, November, 2011 dayhike in Congaree National Park.     (Photos)
Our April, 2011 visit to Charleston for the Cooper River Bridge Run.
Our February, 2011 dayhike on the Enoree River Passage of the Palmetto Trail.     (Photos)
My solo, October, 2010 dayhike in Congaree National Park.     (Photos)
My solo, February, 2008 solo hikes to Kalmia Gardens, near Hartsville, and Forty Acre Rock, in the Sandhills east of Lancaster.     (Photos)
Our November, 2006 dayhike in Kings Mountain National Military Park and Kings Mountain State Park.
Our January, 2005 dayhike in Congaree National Park.
Our September, 2001 car camping trip toHunting Island State Park, featuring the most vicious mosquitoes we've ever experienced.
Our December, 2000 backpacking trip in Congaree National Park.

The Angel Oak








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