Big Bradley Falls and Little Bradley Falls

1/26/18

Lisa w and I

Saluda NC

Lisa found these on a Facebook group called waterfall junkies. Just a few miles off I-26 in Saluda NC we followed the GPS and did not find what we were looking for so we turned around and found the trail head.

We have a google article with directions and we follow as best we can. We follow this path to a fork and reread the article to decide which way to go. We go left. We follow the trail till it comes to a stream that we have to cross to get to the trail on the other side. It’s rock hopping time.

After we cross the water the trail is pretty easy. It goes about a mile and you have a choice to go to the bottom or the top of the falls. We decide to go to the top first. It’s not too much farther and we come to a tree with an arrow pointing down. There is also this sign.

And this one!

We follow this trail down over rocks and roots. We can hear the waterfall. There is a small ledge area after some big boulders. I leave my back pack above so I’d feel safer without it. The ledge (according to google) is 200 feet straight up a rock wall. It’s amazing and breathtaking but made me a little dizzy. It doesn’t seam to bother Lisa she just sits on the edge with her feet hanging over!

I reach out and take a pic of the drop. It doesn’t really do it justice.

Now it’s time to head to the other trail cause Lisa is so excited to get to the bottom of the falls. We are so excited we miss our path and go the wrong way. We go back up the trail and catch our trail going up. Once on the main trail we head back the way we came and walk right past the trail to the bottom. Once we get behind the falls I can tell we past it so back up the trail we go!

The trail down is kinda steep and definitely rocks and roots. We get to a fork and go left. This again is the wrong way but has a view of the top of the falls. We turn back up the trail and go left to the area where there is a rope tied to a tree for you to repel down about 20 ft!

I’m just to scared to attempt it but without hesitation Lisa flies down the rope. She said I’m going I came all this way! Well of course! I keep contemplating going down and even get into position but chicken out. Three guys arrive and even offer to help me down but nope!

In that pic you can see Lisa at the bottom, I sit down and eat my lunch while she gets to explore! After a bit she comes back and climbs up the rope. She is all excited about being at the bottom of the falls. After seeing her videos I see why!

We start back down the trail back towards the car. It’s time to cross the creek but instead of rock hopping we decide to cross by walking on a fallen tree! Lisa jumps up there and takes about 20 seconds to cross it. Me on the other hand it takes a while! I went half way, rested walked a little more then shuffled my feet till i got to the point the tree is going up. I get scared take my backpack off throw it to lisa and jump off onto a rock!

All total it was only a 2.2 mile hike. I drop my pack in the car, grab a bottle of water and we go across the street to hike to Little Bradley Falls.

Same thing we have a google article on this trail that i screen shot. We head up through a pretty wide trail. Though I read the article I clearly did not retain any of it. I looked at a path that went down toward the creek and say it looks like a crossing but just keep walking down the trail. We walk a couple miles along the creek waiting for a waterfall and we are climbing over downed trees. We keep walking and we see this sign.

It doesn’t deter us one bit! We keep walking and see a campsite down below us that looks like they’ve been there for a while. We walk a little father and come across 2 big signs. One says NO Trespassing and the other says Beware of the Dog. That one gets our attention and we turn around.

We walk back till we can hear a waterfall and decide to climb down to it because there is no trail. That was fun it was real steep! I’m thinking I’m glad it’s winter because I think we would definitely find a snake or two! It’s s nice waterfall but it’s clearly not the one we are looking for and we have no idea if it has a name or not.

We decide to walk along the river which is not a trail and we dodging bushes and branches. After a bit I say “there’s the real trail let’s go up”

Lisa heads up towards the trail and I follow. It’s pretty steep and when I finally get to the top she takes this little gem. My face says it all!

So I decide to re-read that article and turns out we were supposed to cross that creek and follow another to the falls! We head back down the trail to wear I thought we should of went in the first place but didn’t go. That was it but another creek crossing! Lisa without hesitation goes across using a couple of dead logs and rocks. She is on the other side before I know it! I look at her and say I hate you! She said it’s easy you can do it. I reluctantly step on those logs to get to the rocks and I’m across. Yay! Still dry!

We follow this trail along the creek for about 20 min and guess what? Yep time to cross the creek again.

We have to rock hop. It’s about a 25 feet wide creek. Lisa flies across it as usual but I get stuck because I can’t get over to one rock.

She has long legs and I’m just not wanting to get wet!

I ask her to comeback and show me how she did it and she does. But when she is going back one foot goes in the water up to her knee! Lord I will never hear the end of this! All day long it was her cold wet foot! Haha

I decide to go back take off my shoes and socks and cross where is calm water! It’s deeper than I thought so I finally decide to find a large stick and go back and cross where we were. That worked great and across I went! I left my stick there so I can go back!

Finally we are in our way and we make our way to the falls. It’s pretty awesome!

Lisa of course needs to climb to the top of this waterfall and she starts to climb up the side of the falls holding onto rocks and roots behind big rocks. I lost sight of her for about 10 minutes when she emerges at the very top!

I wait at the bottom. She comes back down and take a couple more pics. I love these two!

We have plans to go to watch her daughters softball scrimmage at 2:30 so we have to get going. We plan to do this one again and spend more time.

We head back, cross the creek no problem and hike it back to the car.

Very fun day!

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