On the difficult,
two-to-three hour hike into Bee Cove Falls, you’ll have plenty of
time to savor the joys of losing yourself in the woods. Sometimes a
wilderness area is great because it’s a portal into a place that
only a few lucky people could otherwise experience. Other times,
backcountry spots have allure for precisely the opposite reason: They
are remote and unspoiled. The multi-tiered Bee Cove Falls is a prime
example of the latter. But the reward is a stunning waterfall that
drops in one steep cascade and four smaller ones.
first level, 40 feet; other levels, 10-20 feet
of hike: 2.1 miles to the largest cascade
to hike: 2 to 3 hours
or river: Bee Cove Creek
1. From Walhalla drive north on SC 28 for 8 miles to the junction of
SC 28 and SC 107, and bear right (north) onto SC 107.
Drive approximately 12.9 miles to FS 702 and park.
After Fish Hatchery Road on the left,
FS 702 is the second asphalt
road on the right (east).
Hike the down FS 702 (east) for 1 mile and just after crossing Bee
Cove Creek, take the right fork.
At approximately 0.3 mile you will come to a three way intersection.
Take the right path and pass over a dirt vehicle barrier.
In another 0.1 mile, the road curves left. Take the less defined trail
to the right. There are numerous logs spaced along the trail.
A little less than 0.1 mile this path begins to disappear. A white
pine stands near this point on the right with a large, crooked
chestnut oak just beyond it. The sound, but not the sight, of the
falls is clear now.
are within approximately 300 feet of the falls. By following the sound
of the plunging water you can find the first cascade. The open woods
offer little difficulty to gaining the first cascade, but because of
rock outcrops and the steepness of the slope, it is necessary to first
work your way down the slope from the end of the path.
Circle to the right, descending toward the sound of the falls. Using
the rising sound as a guide, begin ascending through the woods until
you are in sight of the first falls. A flat stone boulder at the
bottom of this cascade offers a welcomed opportunity to rest and enjoy
Descending downstream of the creek to the four smaller falls is
exceedingly difficult, because rhododendron borders the creek as it
flows from the first cascade. Progress here is very slow and you
should proceed with caution.
Sumter National Forest, Andrew Pickens Ranger District, 112 Andrew
Pickens Circle, Mountain Rest, SC, 29664.
Updated: October 21, 2005
South Carolina State Trails Program
South Carolina Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism
1205 Pendleton Street :: Columbia, SC 29201 :: 803-734-0173
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