Wambaw Creek

Trail Activities: t

  • Water


5.00 miles





Difficulty: Easy

Trail Features: t

  • Parking
  • Water Launch
  • Fishing
  • Pets
  • No Fee
  • Camping


Wambaw Creek is a pretty black water tidal creek located in the Francis Marion National Forest. It meanders through the Wambaw Creek Wilderness Area created in 1980. There are two public landings providing access to the creek: Still Landing and Elmwood Landing.

Loading Trails

The easy, five-mile float on tide-influenced Wambaw Creek Canoe Trail north of Charleston, will also take you into one of the state’s five federally designated wilderness areas; the 1,900-acre Wambaw Creek Wilderness that was created in 1980. A tributary of the Santee River, the creek meanders languidly through the vast swamps of Francis Marion National Forest. In the 1700s, settlers used slave labor to convert parts of this swamp into rice fields and harvest timber and you can still see remains of long-abandoned canals and rice-field dikes along the way. Although the surrounding land is a dull loblolly pine forest (large timber companies took most mature trees by the 1930s), there’s a chance you may see rare swallow-tailed kite, black-crowned night heron, and red-shouldered hawk.

Hours: Year-round. Check with the Sewee Visitor and Environmental Center for current conditions.

Camping: Camping is permitted in Francis Marion National Forest, but there are few suitable areas due to the swampy nature of the stream banks.


Access Points (mileage and GPS coordinates are approximate and for reference only):

Mile 0 - (GPS N 33.1777 W 79.4971) - Still Landing - This is a public landing on Forest Service Road FR 211B. From Charleston, drive northeast on US 17 and at McClellanville turn left onto SC 45. Drive approximately 5 miles and turn right onto Forest Service Road FR 211. Drive approximately 4 miles, turn left onto FR 211B, and continue to the landing. You can go either direction from here

Mile 5 - (GPS N 33.2073 W 79.4687)- Elmwood Landing - This is a primitive campsite and public landing near Hampton Plantation State Historic Site. From Charleston, drive northeast on US 17 and approximately 5 miles past McClellanville turn left onto Charleston County S-10-857. Just past Hampton Plantation State Historic Site, S-10-857 turns into FR 204. Continue to the landing. There are no other landings beyond this point.

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Francis Marion National Forest | Sewee Visitor and Environmental Education Center | 5821 US Highway 17 North, Awendaw, SC 29429 | (843) 928-3368

Berkeley Blueways | 223 East Main Street, Suite B | Moncks Corner, SC 29461 | (843) 719-4046 | Email

Download Coordinates
KML file Trail Segments (Paths)
Trail Features (Points of Interest)
Lat: 33.19542178470478
Long: -79.48149525618330