Water Trails

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UPCOUNTRY - Anderson, Cherokee, Greenville, Oconee, Pickens, Spartanburg MIDLANDS - Abbeville, Aiken, Chester, Chesterfield, Edgefield, Fairfield, Greenwood, Kershaw, Lancaster, Laurens, Lexington, McCormick, Newberry, Richland, Saluda, Union, York LOWCOUNTRY - Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, Berkeley, Beaufort, Calhoun, Charleston, Clarendon, Colleton, Darlington, Dillon, Dorchester, Florence, Georgetown, Hampton, Horry, Jasper, Lee, Marion, Marlboro, Orangeburg, Sumter, Williamsburg

NOTE: Water trail information follows the trail lisitings.

UPCOUNTRY

Greenville County

Reedy River Paddling (60.0 miles)

Oconee County

Pickens Ranger District

Chattooga National Wild and Scenic River  (29.0 miles)

Spartanburg County

Lawson's Fork Creek (13.0 miles)

MIDLANDS

Aiken County

Aiken State Park Canoe  (1.7 miles)

Chester County

Landsford Canal State Park

Catawba River  (7.4 miles)

Chesterfield County

Cheraw State Park (3.8 miles)

Edgefield County

Long Cane Ranger District

Turkey/Stevens Creek Canoe (12.0 miles)

 

Kershaw County

 

 

 

 

N. R. Goodale State Park Canoe (1.5 miles)

 

 

 

 

 

Laurens County

Enoree Ranger District

Enoree River  (36.0 miles)

Lexington County

Lower Saluda River (9.5 miles)

Richland County

Congaree River Blue Trail (51.0 miles)

Congaree Swamp National Monument

Cedar Creek Canoe (22.0 miles)

Broad River Canoe  (24.0 miles)

Union County

Enoree Ranger District

Tyger River Canoe (24.0 miles)

LOW COUNTRY

Beaufort County

Beaufort River Blueway (6.2 Miles)

Berkeley County

Arrowhead Landing to Highway 41 (16.2 miles)

Cooper River Underwater Heritage (2.0 miles)

Cross Fish Hatchery (7.3 miles)

Duck Pond (4.2 miles)

Durham Creek (4.4 miles)

Francis Marion National Forest

Chicken Creek Canoe (8.2 miles)

Wambaw Creek Wilderness Canoe (5.0 miles)

Echaw Creek Canoe (9 miles)

Foster Creek (7.0 miles)

Goose Creek Reservoir (8.0 miles)0

Highway 41 to McConnell's Landing (11.0 miles)

Highway 52 to Arrowhead Landing (12.7 miles)

Huger Quinby Creek (4.1 miles)

Lower Wadboo Creek (Approximately 5.0 miles of trail)

North Moultrie (Approximately 10.5 miles)

Old Santee Canal Park Canoe (2.0 miles)

Spier's Landing (10.7 miles)

Upper Wadboo Creek (5.2 miles)

Way Ditch (2.0 miles plus a 1.0 mile spur)

Wilson's Landing to Highway 52 (25 miles)

Charleston County

ACE Basin

Penny Creek to Willtown Bluff (7.0 miles)

Magnolia Plantation and It's Gardens

Canoe Trail (1.5 miles)

Martins Landing to Westbank Landing (13.2 miles)

Santee Coastal Reserve Canoe (4.2 miles)

Clarendon County

Santee National Wildlife Refuge

Cuddo Unit Canoe (0.3 mile)

Woods Bay State Natural Area Canoe (1.0 miles)

Colleton County

Combahee Unit, ACE Basin National Wildlife Refuge

Cuckhold's Creek (6.1 miles)

Edisto River Canoe and Kayak Trail (Main Stem) (50.3 miles)

Feefarm Creek to Brickyard Landing (13.7 miles)

ACE Basin

Line Canal Landing to Steel Bridge Landing (8.0 miles)
SC 303 to US 17 (6.0 miles)
SC 64 to US 17 (6.4 miles)
US 17A to Line Canal (11.9 miles)

Hutchinson Island Boating (20.0 miles)

 

 

 

Georgetown County

Black River - East  (40 miles)

Black River - West  (41 miles)

Horry County

Waccamaw River Heritage Preserve River (25 miles)

Little Pee Dee Heritage Preserve (38.5 miles)

Lee County

Lynches River (11.4 miles)

Marion County

Little Pee Dee Scenic River (8.0 miles)

Orangeburg County

Edisto North Fork Blueway (33.5 Miles)

Water Trail Information

From the roiling Chattooga Wild and Scenic River to the placid blackwater swamps of the Lowcountry, South Carolina is ideal for paddling enthusiasts. A canoeist or kayaker could find a lifetime’s worth of exploring and never even leave the state’s borders. Consider your choices: quiet afternoon floats along the cypress-shrouded Black River, whitewater play-boating just minutes from downtown Columbia on the dam-controlled Saluda River, and multi-day paddling trips where you might island-hop down lengthy rivers such as the Enoree or Tyger. You could also take on the challenge of a trip from Columbia or Camden to Charleston. For a map of this trip from Santee Cooper click here: Charleston Trip

Some estimates place the navigable portion of South Carolina waterways at over 2,000 miles – an impressive figure considering the relatively small size of our state. But beyond the sheer mileage, we should also note our state’s temperate climate, ample rainfall, and largely rural composition. Combine all those factors with the fact that it’s relatively easy to get around in South Carolina – day-trips from one end of the state to the other are common and relatively straightforward using our excellent highway system. What we’re getting to here is simple: South Carolina is about as close to it gets to paddling heaven. Sure, there are more exotic locations and many more challenging rivers. However, few places offer the breadth and quality found here.

The water trails listed in this guide will take you to creeks, rivers, and swamps. Remember that trail descriptions are necessarily general and river conditions are always subject to change. Follow the trip checklist and safety issues described below to ensure a good trip. If you require paddling lessons, transportation, rental equipment, or guides, consider contacting the South Carolina Professional Paddlesports Association (SCPPA). It is a nonprofit organization of canoe and kayak outfitters and guides who embrace the highest professional business practices and conduct. For a current list of SCPPA members, visit their website. You can also check the list of outfitters and organizations listed in the Yellow Pages on this site.

Trip Checklist

Check the weather forecast and the condition of the river prior to your trip. A combination of rainy weather and cold temperatures could potentially become dangerous.

Familiarize yourself with the water and terrain by studying maps for take-out points.

Determine how long it will take for your party to paddle or float the trail. Paddling times vary when you consider factors such as water depth, your ability, the number of times you stop, and how often obstructions may require you to portage. Generally, two to three miles an hour is a good estimate.

Know the access points. Some take-outs are not visible from the river. If you plan to use one of these, take extra precautions that you don’t pass your take-out by mistake. Similarly, some put-ins require driving down unmarked back roads. It’s a good idea to find the most detailed map you possibly can.

Safety

Two hazards require extra warning: flooding and fallen trees. Heavy rains may cause a sudden change in water level and speed. South Carolina rivers usually flood several times in the spring and can rise 10-20 vertical feet. That said, you should make it a point to check local weather conditions prior to your trip. Fallen trees can also pose an extra hazard during high water by pinning boats or people against obstructions. Keep an eye on the river ahead.

From mid-summer to late fall, watch for hornet and wasp nests on tree limbs and bushes.

Always paddle with a life jacket, first aid kit, map, compass, flashlight, and cell phone if you have one. Don’t just take them with you, though: know how to use them.

During hunting season, wear bright clothing for greater visibility.

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 South Carolina State Trails Program
South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism
1205 Pendleton Street :: Columbia, SC 29201 :: 803-734-0173 
Updated: August 25, 2008
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