Mike, Me, Cooper and Tucker (dogs)
If you really look there are always great places to explore in your own back yard!
Mike did the research and had us doing 4 hikes today in 4 different counties surrounding our home. It was a total of 8 miles.
We loaded up the pups and headed to our first trail in Great Falls SC. There isn’t a falls called Great Falls anymore. They diverted it while building textile mills and power station long long ago. Mike found Rocky Creek Trail which is part of the Carolina Thread Trail. We arrived just as the sun was coming up around 7 am. It’s misty and 50 degrees. Not bad for January.
A short decent down a semi paved road ends at the creek. It’s a sandy beach area along a small muddy creek called Rocky Creek. It’s a tributary of the Catawba River.
There dirt road goes left to right. Go left and about a quarter of a mile is a waterfall. It’s really beautiful. We have had tons of rain so I’m not sure if in the summer there would be much water. It’s about 30 feet high with solid rock walls surrounding it. It truly looked out of place.
Back the other way was about a mile hike along this creek. It was a nice walk except for 2 things. 1. It was pretty muddy from all the rain and 2. The trail is actually a sewer line. Every 60 ft or so was another sewer vent.
But a good use of unusable land no doubt! After a bit it turns to private property. There are electric fences but people are allowed to stay on the trail below a huge private residence.
The river turns to rapids here and goes in all directions.
The trail ends at more private property. Just before the end an old mill’s ruins can barely be seen.
We turned around and headed back to the car. This was a really nice trail.
When in Great Falls I think you must go to the Flopeye Diner. The word Flopeye and Great Falls are synonymous.
We had breakfast and got the dogs a liver mush biscuit each. Very good and very reasonable. The nicest guy owns it.
We drove about 15 miles to Camden SC. This was a revolutionary war site.
It was 115 acres of pine forests with trails benches and markers on both sides of the road. At this point it is being cleared to save the Long leaf pines. Because of this it was not a great trail. We walked a mile or two and headed back.
We went back to the car and headed to Hanging Rock Battlefield in Heath Springs SC.
It’s a short trail through some great rock formations with a nice battlefield memorial along a creek. We passed a lady and her kids at the trailhead who tried to tell us some urban Legends about devil worshipers. Little did she know I had heard these same stories about Fort Mill SC so I wasn’t buying any of it. She showed us this tree and some bones below it. Yea that’s a little weird! To make it weirder our dog tucker planted his feet and didn’t want to go any farther!
We pulled him along and things got back to normal! 🤣🤣. The trail made a nice loop around the rocks that were covered in ferns and moss. There was an abundance of holly bushes so for January this was a pretty green trail!
Around the backside was a nice memorial for the battle.
WWe finished the loop and got back in the car. The next county was York Co. our county.
We headed to the Catawba Indian Reservation. We found the trailhead down a dirt road. This is also part of the Carolina thread trail.
We walked the trail to the river. There was a big fire pit and benches they called the Story telling circle right at the river.
The river was still super high and really moving fast. We started up the trail that goes along the river up to the new kayak put in.
I couldn’t sleep last night and was getting pretty tired so I called it quits after a short walk along the river. Turned out to be a great idea because as soon as we got to the car it started raining ☔️
Cooper is a weird dog while riding in a car. Today he preferred to ride in the back back.
I would recommend all these trails for dogs or families to get outdoors. Maybe not the Camden trail until they finish the clearing going on there.