Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Churches off 261 November 2011

One day in November Donna and I headed out for a day of driving on a beautiful sunny day and stopped and walked around 3 neat old churches along Highway 261 a bit north of Sumter. We visited Bethesda Methodist, the Church of the Ascension Episcopal, and the Church of the Holy Cross, the final resting place of Joel Poinsett, the man who introduced the plant named after him to the U.S. We also visited the grave of General Thomas Sumter and some of his family members. Here are some photos we took that day. Donna and I were sharing a camera, so some of these are hers. :-)

I know Donna took these next 3, because she loves Ginkgo trees. :-)

And I know I took these next 2, because I love Spanish moss. :-)

Either of us could have taken this one, because we both love old padlocks.

Saturday, February 04, 2012

Waterfall Adventure November 2011

In mid-November I headed into the Northwest corner of South Carolina for a day of waterfall adventuring. The first one that I visited was Todd Creek Falls just north of Clemson. I parked on the side of the road and followed an electric company access road and crossed a small stream to get to it; it was a moderately strenuous 20-minute hike one way.

From there I headed up Highway 28 through Walhalla and visited an old favorite, Isaqueena Falls. Legend has it that the Indian maiden Isaqueena faked her death by jumping over the falls but landing on the ledge right below the top to evade capture by her tribe so that she could run away with the white man with whom she had fallen in love. The water flow was very low this particular day, so the waterfall wasn't so impressive, but the view was extraordinary as always. This is a good one to visit, because it's a beautiful, tall waterfall; the walk to the overlook is very short and easy; and there is also a tunnel (Stumphouse) at the site that you can walk 1600 feet into (be sure to take a flashlight); it was to be a railroad tunnel, but the Civil War interrupted its construction, and it was never resumed.

A view from the walkway leading to the falls.

From there I continued up Highways 28 and 107 almost to the North Carolina state line, where I visited two falls close to each other, the first being King Creek Falls. A 4-mile dirt road led to a parking area, and from there it was a relatively easy half-mile hike along the creek (seen in the first photo) that is fed from the waterfall.

Just a small amount further down the road is another parking area from which a slightly more strenuous hike leads to Spoonauger Falls.

Sites seen along the way to the waterfall.

Spoonauger Falls

I then found my way over to Highway 11 and headed toward Table Rock State Park to my final waterfall of the day; en route I stopped a couple of times to enjoy the scenery.

Perfect motorcycling road!

Imagine walking out your door and seeing this every day!

Just a couple of miles west of Table Rock State Park is Twin Falls, a pair of side-by-side falls that was my favorite of the day. A somewhat lengthy but easily navigated trail led to it.

I encountered this oddity on the trail to the waterfall. Quite bizarre!

A very fun and sight-filled day! It brought my count of visited waterfalls up to 57. Can't wait for the next adventure!