I first visited Spoonauger Falls in late February 2016. It was an overcast day, with lots of rain falling in the days prior to my hike. I was in this area to make a return visit to King Creek Falls. My 1st visit was over 2 years ago, and I wanted to return under better conditions than what a typical hot and dry late August afternoon can provide. Before I did this though, my first stop was to a waterfall that I overlooked on my first visit. Once I learned how close I was to Spoonauger Falls, and that I didn’t check it out….I could have kicked myself. That’s ok, I made it on this day and it was a beauty!
From NC, I came down NC 281 and crossed into South Carolina where the highway changes to SC 130. On the way down, I passed right by Whte Owl Falls on the Thompson River and had a feeling it would looking good. I was soooo not wrong. I even took a side path to view it from the top, it was ok, no where near as good as the view from the base. It was gonna be a good day. I got back on the road, into SC, and took the sign “To 107”. I turned left to head south for a few miles and took a right on Burrels Ford Road. To get to Spoonauger Falls, meant driving past the King Creek Falls parking area for a short ways. I initially passed right by it , crossed the bridge over the Chatooga River, and boom, I was in Georgia. Georgia wasn’t even on my mine…but Spoonaguer is right at the Chatooga which happens to be the northern border between these two states.
I pulled into this parking lot above, turned around as parked just off the road where the access was to the Chatooga Trail. This waterfall starts off with an easy hike along the Chatooga River upstream from the road. After a crossing of Spoonauger Creek, the trail for Spoonauger Falls heads right or upstream.
As you can see by the sign, it is a short 0.1 miles upstream. It was difficult on this day in February anyway. A number of large Rhododendrons , much taller than my 6 foot frame had toppled over and were covering the narrow, wet and muddy trail. I slowly worked my way over and under and around the storm-fallen plants and was treated to a beautiful 50 foot waterfall.
I was able to make it out into the middle and down a few tiers for an exceptional view. I’m not sure what I was expecting to see at Spoonauger Falls but it wasn’t this. I was very pleased. I made it back to the car, then it was off to King Creek.
It was a late January Sunday afternoon. We had just spent 1-2 hours exploring each waterfall at Brasstown Falls. It had already been a great day, and a great weekend as well. I had spent time the previous day in NE Georgia seeing waterfalls, and had seen some waterfalls the same day before Brasstown. I could have left for home and been fine…..but that is just not how we roll. I always try to squeeze in as many waterfalls as possible per trip and usually the hard part is deciding which ones NOT to visit and to save for a later day. After Brasstown Falls, we had a short meeting of the waterfall minds. Sids Falls was very close by, but most of us had just recently visited this one. Daniel had this thing for Kings Creek Falls, which is beautiful and a must-see…but being probably an hour away was just not practical. It really came down to 2 waterfalls, that were just moments away: Opossum Creek Falls or Long Creek Falls. They were both very close by. The trailheads were maybe 1 mile apart on the dirt Turkey Ridge Rd. They were also both on the Carolina Mountain Club’s Waterfall Challenge 100 (WC100) that I have been working on for several years and had yet to see. One person in the group had been to these before and warned that Opossum Creek Falls was over 5 miles round trip while Long Creek Falls was around 3 miles round trip. Being Sunday afternoon now, and long drives home awaiting everyone, we opted for the shorter Long Creek Falls. It turned out to be a very good choice. Continue reading “Long Creek Falls Along the Chattooga”
Brasstown Falls is a unique setting of 4 very cool, interesting, beautiful and different waterfalls located very close to one another. 3 of them are on Brasstown Creek and 1 is just upstream on the feeder stream Little Brasstown Creek. Brasstown Falls was the destination for one of my trips to South Carolina in 2014, that thanks to bad traffic jams, taking different routes than planned and just running out of daylight, I ended up at Station Cove Falls. It wasn’t a total loss. After that, I kind of forgot about Brasstown for awhile. It is on the Carolina Mountain Club’s Waterfall Challenge 100 list that I have been steadily working down for a few years now. Sooner or later it was going to come up again. A recent trip to Sids Falls in Oconee County, SC with some friends brought me very close to Brasstown Falls and it came up on the radar screen again. I had heard some great things about Brasstown Falls. It was time to plan an overnight trip and come and visit this one. Continue reading “Brasstown Falls”
Station Cove Falls is a beautiful 60 foot set of cascades that starts as one drop and then splits into two. The group and I, after completing the primary hike to Sids Falls on Shoulder Bone Branch, had enough energy and daylight for 1 more waterfall. There wasn’t much time left on these short days when the sun goes down at 5 pm, so we had to choose something fairly short. Brasstown Falls was closeby, and we actually drove right by Yellow Branch and Issaqueena Falls. We settled on Station Cove Falls, just outside of Walhalla, SC.
This is a short 1/2 mile hike that is about as easy as mountain hiking gets. The first half of the hike is along and just above a swamp. You wouldn’t think a waterfall was anywhere near this place. Once around the swamp, the landscape changes quickly as the hills rise on each side of you. The fence and info board roughly mark the changing of the landscape. Continue reading “Station Cove Falls – 2016 Winter Hike”
This days hiking destination was to be Moonshine Falls, a 40 foot drop from an overhanging cliff with a lot of room behind the falls. I have wanted to visit here for some time now. I knew the waterfall wasn’t particularly big or on a large flow stream. It is one of the Carolina Mountain Club’s WC100’s waterfalls that I have yet to visit. It also has a very unique feature. Behind the waterfall on the left side are the rusty remains of some 55 gallon drums and some tubing that was once part of a moonshine operation many years back. Hence the name…Moonshine Falls. It is not often a pile of trash at a waterfall is something one would want to see, but this one gives this waterfall some added character, and leaves one to wonder what it must have been like. I searched for some history on the web, but couldn’t come up with much. Continue reading “Moonshine Falls – First Visit 08/16/15 – Get Your Shine On”
Twin Falls in northern South Carolina is spectacular. As my waterfall list nears the 150 mark now, Twin Falls remain a solid top 10 pick in my favorites list. It’s really a combination of what a great waterfall and scene this is, the ease of access, and a very central location in an area very rich with waterfalls. The walk to this one is short, 10-15 minutes and easy. It is located in a nature preserve area. The trail is in excellent shape. To top it off, there is a nice covered shelter once you reach the waterfall that is perfectly located for some great photos. If the weather cooperates, and the rocks are dry, this one is fun to get out on and explore the individual falls closer up. On this day in late April though, it was a gray day with some recent rains and it the rocks were too wet for my feet. The main challenge here is finding the location by car. One of my favorite websites for directions to South Carolina waterfall is www.sctrails.net. They provide directions to about 25 South Carolina waterfalls and Twin Falls is on their list. Continue reading “Twin Falls, South Carolina in the Spring”
I finally found my way to Virginia Hawkins Falls in late April 2015. I feel kind of silly for it taking so long, especially seeing how many times I have driven right past it. It is a beautiful 25 foot waterfall that seems more difficult to reach than it really is. From the trailhead, this was a 1.4 mile hike for me or 2.8 mile round trip. Knowing where to turn and where to park are the only real challenges to overcome with this one. Continue reading “Virginia Hawkins Falls “
Yellow Branch Falls made such an impact on me on New Years Day 2014, that I vowed to return. While I was there, I had a major problem trying to photograph this very wide waterfall. The widest lens I had was the 18-55 mm kit lens that came with the camera. This was ok in most of the scenarios I had been until that point. This particular waterfall, which is wider than it is tall, took numerous attempts from different positions to get most of it all in one photo. Continue reading “Yellow Branch Falls – 2014’s First and Last Waterfall”
Issaqueena Falls is a beautiful 100 foot waterfall, just 6 miles or so north of Walhalla, SC on HWY 28. I first noticed this waterfall on New Years Day 2014 on my first trip to Yellow Branch Falls. As I left Walhalla on SC Hwy 28 heading north, I could see a waterfall on the side of the mountain across the valley as HWY 28 began to climb. As I continued to climb, I came to my destination of Yellow Branch Falls and spent the afternoon there. However, directly across the Hwy 28 is the entrance into Issaqueena Falls. After driving down the mountain some from the entrance, I am pretty certain that Issaqueena Falls is what I was able see from SC 28.
< Continue reading “Issaqueena Falls”
I was on my way to South Carolina this last weekend of 2014, on my way to the Walhalla area to see some waterfalls just north of town. This requires me to go through the beautiful city of Greenville, SC. I have spent some time here in the past on some work related projects. I never knew that there was a large, beautiful waterfall on the Reedy River right in the center of town. I must admit that I really wasn’t searching for them at that stage in my life either. I learned of this particular waterfall from viewing photos online, from some other waterfall seekers. While the idea of a waterfall in downtown Greenville doesn’t necessarily excite me, I was going to be driving right by it today. It was just a short detour from the interstate so I said “Why Not?” Continue reading “Reedy River Falls – Falls Park”