Plan to spend at least 3 days for this 33-mile shuttle hike on the Chattooga Valley segment of the Foothills Trail. You’ll want to savor every waterfall, lush riverside, and ridgetop view you encounter along South Carolina’s mountainous northwest border. From the parking lot, take the blue blazed spur trail and turn left onto the white-blazed Foothills Trail. After an initial 1,100-foot ascent over the first 2.5 miles, as you climb from the Whitewater River to the top of Upper Whitewater Falls, the rest of the route is generally downhill. You’ll trace the Blue Ridge Escarpment along scenic riverbanks and bluffs, and through mixed forests brimming with trillium, with campsites scattered throughout.
-Hike adapted from “Hiking South Carolina,” by John Clark and John Dantzler (FalconGuide)
- Distance: 53.1
Bad Creek Parking Lot
Location: 35.012717, -82.998733
Duke Power’s Bad Creek Project
Oconee State Park Trailhead
Location: 34.86365, -83.0981
Oconee State Park.