Waterfall Trail

Bee Cove Falls

(Oconee County)



Trail Map    Photo

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.

Height: first level, 40 feet; other levels, 10-20 feet

Length of hike: 2.1 miles to the largest cascade

Time to hike: 2 to 3 hours

Difficulty: Strenuous

Creek or river: Bee Cove Creek

USGS Quadrangle: Tamassee

Directions to falls:

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.

2. 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).

3. Hike the down FS 702 (east) for 1 mile and just after crossing Bee Cove Creek, take the right fork.

4. At approximately 0.3 mile you will come to a three way intersection. Take the right path and pass over a dirt vehicle barrier.

6. 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.

7. 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.  You 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.

8. 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 the scenery.

9. 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.  

Information: Sumter National Forest, Andrew Pickens Ranger District, 112 Andrew Pickens Circle, Mountain Rest, SC 29664 / (864) 638-9568

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Updated: October 21, 2005
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