I had a big day planned for this late January 2016 weekend. The Waterfalls of Brasstown Falls were to be my primary destination. Any other waterfall destination I could find myself at would just be a bonus. Brasstown Falls is over 4 hours away for me. I picked a small town in northern Georgia, Clayton to drive down the day before on Saturday to spend the night. I wasn’t the only one with a long drive, as most of the friends I was meeting the next day had at least 2 hours to drive. One particular friend, Daniel Jack Hutchison, had a similar drive as I did, except coming in from Tennessee as opposed to west/central North Carolina. We made some “rough” plans to see where we were about 1 pm and go from there. Luckily, we were both set up early in the afternoon and had plenty of time to spare. He knew of a few waterfalls closeby to Clayton, Ga so off we went. Continue reading “Minnehaha Falls & Panther Falls”
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”
For my last Hiking Day of 2015, I was somewhat unsure of where I would go. It was going to be a solo hike today, so I wasn’t up for anything too extreme. As I chatted online with some of the fellow Waterfall Chasers that I have hiked with over the last 6 months, I was flat out called out . I was asked where I was on my WC100 list and why I wasn’t necessarily working on that. My answer didn’t impress and I was was just told that I need to focus and get it together….lol. So I pulled out the list and found 3 waterfalls in the Davidson River/Looking Glass Rock area that I need to see for the first time. On my last venture into this area, I left with a sprained knee that kept me off the trail for a month last summer. I had to end the day with some progress on the list though, so off I went . Two waterfalls would be checked off the list on this first hike of the day, to Log Hollow Falls and Tributaries.
I was surprised as to how easy Log Hollow Falls was. From the US 64/US 276/NC 280 intersection in Brevard, NC., head north on US 276 for 10 miles passing Looking Glass Falls (Stop Here If Not Too Crowded), Moore Cove Falls (Another Beauty), and Sliding Rock. Look for a left turn on FR 475B. Drive about 1 1/2 miles up, down and around a twisting forest gravel road for another, gated Forest Road 5043. There will be a big brown information sign on the right. Do not block road when you park. Continue reading “Log Hollow Falls and Falls on Tributary Streams”
Dismal Falls was amazing! It’s hard to imagine someone naming a waterfall “Dismal Falls”. Why would anyone want to see something “Dismal”. Well, Dismal just happens to be the name of the creek that this amazing waterfall lies on, hence the name “Dismal Falls”. I was fortunate enough to visit 2 waterfalls named “Dismal” in 2015. The first was a 15 foot multi-level cascade in SW Virginia near the Cascades, which was very easy to get to. Then, there is this one in the Panthertown Valley region of North Carolina. The difficulty goes way up with this one, but so to does the reward. Jim Bob Tinsley wrote in his legendary book “Land of Waterfalls” ….”One of the most foreboding places in the Southern Appalachian Mountains is Dismal Creek in Transylvania County”. That alone is enough to scare most people away, and certainly worth taking note of….for those that are not. Continue reading “Dismal Falls – Autumn 2015 “
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”
What a magnificent way to begin 2016! A new waterfall for me and beautiful one at that. I missed out on the usual New Years Day Hike to begin the year. It wasn’t long though. My first hike and first waterfall occurred on January 3rd . The destination for this hike was to be Sids Falls, a gorgeous 55 foot cascade in extreme NW South Carolina, minutes from the Georgia state line. After experiencing a very warm, record breaking December, the New Year rushed in with stiff northwesterly winds that brought us all back to reality. I prefer hiking in South Carolina in the winter, as it usually brings the added benefit of being warmer than the waterfall hikes in NC. Even as the temps were on there way trending down, we were still able to make it here on a day when the forecast high was to be near 60. This helped take the edge off the 30s and 40s experienced New Year’s Day and weekend in NC. Continue reading “Sids Falls – First Waterfall of 2016”
The Waterfall on Garrett Creek is a very nice, peaceful roadside waterfall in SW Virginia, a few miles northwest of Abingdon. It is set along a wooded stream where the waterfall becomes about 4 times as wide as the stream. It is also on private property, so it will need to be viewed, enjoyed, and/or photographed from the road, which is public. The good news is that the view from the road is very good. If you are visiting waterfalls in SW Virginia, this one is worth adding to your list. Continue reading “Waterfall on Garrett Creek”
It’s been a long time coming! Wow & Finally….are the only two words that come to mind! Big Falls on the Thompson River has been the #1 waterfall on my “Waterfalls to See” list for years now. Early on, I got High Falls at DuPont, Rainbow Falls in Gorges, and Whitewater Falls off the list pretty quick. These seemed to be some of the big waterfalls in North Carolina that newbies can all get checked off pretty easy. Big Falls on the Thompson is a different story. The difficulty goes up several notches. Back then, and still these days, I relied heavily on Waterfall Rich’s site www.ncwaterfalls.com. If you scroll down his impressive list of waterfalls to the one for Big Falls, it is clear that not only is this one of his favorite waterfalls, but also that the trek there is NOT to be taken lightly. It is long. It is steep. It is potentially dangerous. There are river crossings that must made. Me being primarily a solo hiker and photographer for years, I have kept putting this one off. I have always planned on going , but reading Rich’s report, this trip was not going to be made until conditions were optimal. Optimal conditions and open availability rarely seem to happen at the same time. Continue reading “Big Falls on the Thompson River Trip Report…Finally!”