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Phreak
08-29-2006, 18:42
I'm headed up to hike the Foothills Trail (Oconee to Table Rock) in 5 days and then heading up to Pisgah for 3 days. Anyone interested, drop me an email at brian@hikes247.com

Phreak

Just Jeff
08-29-2006, 19:27
Man oh man I'm jealous - I loved the FT. I'd like to do it in winter for the better views next time, though. Enjoy your trip!

Phreak
08-29-2006, 19:29
Yeah, this is my second time doin' the trail this year. The first was back in March. I did it in early Feb of 2005 and there were some incredible views.

FHThiker
08-30-2006, 08:05
Hi guys, I'm doing the Foothills Trail 10/06-10/12ish. Wish I could go sooner! :) ....I'm only about 20 minutes away from the Table Rock side!

white rabbit
08-30-2006, 11:43
I'm doing the FHT November 18-22 with a couple of friends. I've never done it before and am looking forward to it. Did you start at the Table Rock end? If so where did you stop each night. I've set up a schedule but am always looking for info.

The Solemates
08-30-2006, 12:09
The FT is great. We have done it several times and it is a lot of fun. Enjoy! I wish I was going too!

Mother Nature
08-30-2006, 12:10
Smokestack, Stumpknocker, Short Cut and I left Oconee State Park yesterday for a day hike on the southern end. Trail is in GREAT shape. One recent blowdown which was easily skirted was the only thing laying across the trail. We hope to do more of the trail in the near future. Keeping our eye on the hurricane rains headed up the coast.

We would be interested in backpacking the northern end of the trail in early October. It was gastly hot under the trees yesterday. Certainly will wait for the heat to break.

Mother Nature

stumpknocker
08-30-2006, 12:56
We would be interested in backpacking the northern end of the trail in early October.

Mother Nature

Mother Nature meant that her and Smokestack would be interested in walking that trail in early October.....I'm heading back up to Glencliff, NH later next week to finish my walk on the AT. I still have to walk from Glencliff south to Catawba, Va and I'm sure I'll still be on the AT at that time of year. :)

MOWGLI
08-30-2006, 13:39
Mother Nature meant that her and Smokestack would be interested in walking that trail in early October.....I'm heading back up to Glencliff, NH later next week to finish my walk on the AT. I still have to walk from Glencliff south to Catawba, Va and I'm sure I'll still be on the AT at that time of year. :)


Catawba, eh? What are the chances we'll run into one another at the Home Place in October? :-? Once was bizarre enough. Twice would be Twilight Zone material. :banana

Have a great hike!

Jeffrey Hunter

Phreak
08-30-2006, 13:58
I'm doing the FHT November 18-22 with a couple of friends. I've never done it before and am looking forward to it. Did you start at the Table Rock end? If so where did you stop each night. I've set up a schedule but am always looking for info.

I've only hiked it starting at Table Rock. This next trip I'll be starting at Oconee.

We camped at or near the following spots: White Pine Point, Laurel Fork Gap, Bear Creek, Round Mountain & Simm's Field.

There are a ton of great campsites along the trail, and plenty of reliable water sources.

Have a great trip!

Mother Nature
08-30-2006, 14:00
Sorry Stumpy! I knew what I meant to say :sun . I would rather be on the AT myself. LOL.

And you are right... I didn't get my trail name for nuthin'.. Don't mess with Mother Nature

Mother Nature

stumpknocker
08-30-2006, 14:42
Catawba, eh? What are the chances we'll run into one another at the Home Place in October? :-? Once was bizarre enough. Twice would be Twilight Zone material. :banana

Have a great hike!

Jeffrey Hunter

Ha!!!! Jeffrey, I'll let you know when I'll be there and you can take my "summit photo" at the dinner table. It's not Katahdin, but they have fried chicken!!!! It's actually a fitting place for a hiker like me to finish his walk for the year. :-?



Hey Mother Nature, would it be dangerous to point out that even "Mother Nature" isn't perfect when she spells "ghastly"??? Ooops, I feel like I'll pay for saying that!! :)

Mother Nature
08-30-2006, 20:24
Hey Mother Nature, would it be dangerous to point out that even "Mother Nature" isn't perfect when she spells "ghastly"??? Ooops, I feel like I'll pay for saying that!! :)

ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZap! Oh boy is there foul weather in your future, Stump! May Clemson park in front of your tent and deposit a gift. :D I pride myself on my imperfections and may one of my imperfect lightning bolts fry your demo poles. I intend to scan every word in your journal when you get back on the trail and I promise public humiliation! :cool:

Mother Nature

Areli
08-30-2006, 20:55
I'm headed up to hike the Foothills Trail (Oconee to Table Rock) in 5 days and then heading up to Pisgah for 3 days. Anyone interested, drop me an email at brian@hikes247.com

Phreak

Hi Phreak,
I just sent you an email. My husband and I are interested in joining you on the Foothills Trail.

Thanks,
A.

BlackCloud
08-31-2006, 09:29
Could someone kindly give me the basics on this trail?

Length, ending trailheads, difficulty, highlights...

Or can you give me a good website?

I'm from MD and am not familiar w/ this one.....

Thanx

Ewker
08-31-2006, 10:07
http://www.foothillstrail.org/

Just Jeff
08-31-2006, 10:10
There are a few journals at TrailJournals. Mine is at http://www.tothewoods.net/FTDay1.html

MOWGLI
08-31-2006, 10:29
Could someone kindly give me the basics on this trail?

Length, ending trailheads, difficulty, highlights...

Or can you give me a good website?

I'm from MD and am not familiar w/ this one.....

Thanx

Located primarily in South Carolina - this trail runs 76 miles from Oconee State Park to Table Rock Mountain State Park - with a spur to Ceasars Head. It dips briefly into North Carolina to run through an undeveloped park.

The trail passes by or over many major rivers including the Chattooga, Whitewater, Thompson, Toxaway, Horsepasture and perhaps another. The fishing is excellent.

Bridges & waterfalls are abundant on the trail. The trail also passes very close to the summit of Sassafras Mountain - the highest point in South Carolina - for those interested in such things (I am not).

Check it out! It's an outstanding trail.

Nightwalker
08-31-2006, 10:36
Could someone kindly give me the basics on this trail?

Length, ending trailheads, difficulty, highlights...

Or can you give me a good website?

I'm from MD and am not familiar w/ this one.....

Thanx
http://foothillstrail.org/

Not a real good website, but enough to give you an idea.

ed bell
08-31-2006, 10:39
Plenty of things to love about this trail. Trailheads are both located in gated State Parks. There is another secure parking area near Whitewater Falls inside the gated Bad Creek Hydroelectric station. The FHT wanders along the Chattooga River in a section that does not allow floating. Good for fishing and swimming. The trail goes right past Whitewater Falls. I believe it is the highest waterfall East of the Rockies with a drop of 411 ft. plus the lower falls drops another 400ft. The trail travels across the Jocassee Gorges on the remote side of Lake Jocassee. This is a 30 plus mile stretch that the trail does not cross a paved vehicle access. There are two footbridges that are as impressive as any I have seen. Here is a link to a picture of the 225ft suspension bridge over the Toxaway River.http://ils.unc.edu/parkproject/visit/gorg/internal/tr.html The trail also crosses the highest point in SC at 3560ft Sassafrass Mt. These are just a few noteworthy highlights. There are tons more.

Just Jeff
08-31-2006, 10:47
That section where it first opens onto the Chattooga River is like something out of a movie. I had top stop and stare for a while.

ed bell
08-31-2006, 10:52
That section where it first opens onto the Chattooga River is like something out of a movie. I had top stop and stare for a while. There are some campsites along there that make you want to hang around for awhile.:sun

Just Jeff
08-31-2006, 10:58
Yep - I found a perfect one at the top of Laurel Fork Falls...I wished it was time to stop for the day! I hung around and explored a bit but that would have made a very short day.

Nightwalker
08-31-2006, 12:19
Yep - I found a perfect one at the top of Laurel Fork Falls...I wished it was time to stop for the day! I hung around and explored a bit but that would have made a very short day.
That is often the end of my second day coming from TRSP. Pinnacle and Sassafras can kick me hard if I'm not careful, and the downhill 7.1 from Sassafras and the moderately flat 8 miles to the falls makes for a fast-but-easy second day.

The cool thing is that there is so MUCH camping through there that you can cut your day short, or extend it, with no real difficulties.

I love this trail so much. I couldn't begin to guess the number of times that I've hiked it. I've probably done the Jocassee Gorges section 25+ times. That's the 30 mile section from 178 to Bad Creek.

I've thought of writing a detailed map and book combination. Along the same vein as the official one but with color and more detailed maps. Who knows. I'm kind of lazy and like to hike too much, but I do have tons of data, photos and a love of the subject.

Just Jeff
08-31-2006, 12:52
Agree about the amount of camping...several established sites and lots of suitable stealth sites, and water was EVERYWHERE for my April hike.

I'd welcome a new guidebook if I get to hike it again. I'd pay extra for color maps, too. I heard there's a strip map of the trail that can be purchased separately...that would be a great addition. But the first thing I would change is the mileage being broken down by section. I went through and wrote cumulative mileage along each entry...made planning each day much easier.

Mother Nature
08-31-2006, 19:27
I've thought of writing a detailed map and book combination. Along the same vein as the official one but with color and more detailed maps. Who knows. I'm kind of lazy and like to hike too much, but I do have tons of data, photos and a love of the subject.

One other suggestion for a new guide book would be directions to trail heads for those wanting to do the trail in sections. The current guidebook has numerous black and white maps but there are no driving directions.

The separate water resistant map is a little more useful but the text is very blurry and small. Old eyes need a magnifying glass to read.

Many thanks to the folks that maintain this wonderful trail.

Mother Nature

ed bell
08-31-2006, 19:52
One other suggestion for a new guide book would be directions to trail heads for those wanting to do the trail in sections. The current guidebook has numerous black and white maps but there are no driving directions.

Mother NatureDriving to access points on the FHT can be a bit tricky. If anyone is interested in any part in particular I can probably help. I've been to just about all the paved road crossings, and a couple logging road crossings:sun.

MOWGLI
08-31-2006, 21:03
Driving to access points on the FHT can be a bit tricky. If anyone is interested in any part in particular I can probably help. I've been to just about all the paved road crossings, and a couple logging road crossings:sun.

Yeah - if you're looking for a bridge at Sloan Bridge - you'll be lost for hours. :confused:

ed bell
08-31-2006, 21:10
Yeah - if you're looking for a bridge at Sloan Bridge - you'll be lost for hours. :confused:Highway107, that one had me scratching my head as well. The area has been improved upon since the first time I was there. Now there is a privy and a sign. Used to look like a pull off on the side of the road with hardly a clue that the trail crossed the highway.

rainmaker
08-31-2006, 21:46
Alert!!! The American Whitewater Assoc. is suing or challenging the FS to allow kayaking along the upper Chattooga . I understand they , the AWA,want access from the Iron Bridge outside of Highlands, NC to Highway 28. There have been contentious meetings in Highlands. In this corner we have the AWA and in this corner we have the fly fishermen, a particularly fiesty lot. Whitewater kayakers have been stealth kayaking the section down to Burrell's Ford for years usually after a good rain. I'm somewhat ambivalent about individuals kayaking the river , but I certainly hope it is not opened up to commercial outfitters. It is just too damn special, a temple .

ed bell
08-31-2006, 21:54
Was not aware of this. Sounds like a tricky conflict. Commercial outfitters using the two upper sections wouldn't be a good thing. I can't see rafts being able to navigate the upper sections, but kayaks could.

rainmaker
08-31-2006, 22:41
Ed, I got my original info from The State newspaper . The folks at the FS headquaters north of Walhalla confirmed the dispute but I didn't get all the details. If you are interested in following this sort of thing the FS will put you on a mailing list. Just stop by or call them.
W. Bell

ed bell
08-31-2006, 22:50
Thanks for the info and the heads up. I have a couple of kayak friends that I can ask about it as well.

Sly
08-31-2006, 23:46
It's probably insufferable now, but it looks like it may make a good warm-up prior to a spring BMT/AT hike.

Earl Grey
09-04-2006, 00:22
Im going to do the Foothills Trail as my first big trail. Ive already got the guide and read over it diligently. Im going to do it from Oct 6-10th during fall break, starting at Table Rock and going as far as I can in 2.5 days and then come back because I dont have enough time to do it all end to end :(. A question I have about parking at Table Rock is do you just park your car overnight(s) and thats OK? How does that work? Do you have to get a permit?

FHThiker
09-04-2006, 10:32
Im going to do the Foothills Trail as my first big trail. Ive already got the guide and read over it diligently. Im going to do it from Oct 6-10th during fall break, starting at Table Rock and going as far as I can in 2.5 days and then come back because I dont have enough time to do it all end to end :(. A question I have about parking at Table Rock is do you just park your car overnight(s) and thats OK? How does that work? Do you have to get a permit?

Ironic! Those are the dates I'm doing the FHT. I live about 20 minutes away from the Table Rock side just outside Greenville SC. In 2.5 days, depending on how far you do per day, I'd suggest hiking to Laurel Fork Falls (lake Jocassee area) or the valley a few miles before Laurel Fork Falls...it's beautiful, almost rain-forest looking. I'm planning on @ 12-13/miles a day, but I do the trail quite a bit.

As far as parking, I believe you'll need to purchase a permit for each day your vehicle is parked. It's only $2/day. I have one of the SC State Park passes, so it's not an issue (and then I have someone picking me up at Oconee SP 6 days later...).

If you're interested in meeting up, shoot me an email: scott.lynch@levelone.com. There's another guy from my work that's doing the first one or two nights with me (doing an in and out/turn-around hike like you're doing) and then I'm blazing on to complete the entire trail.

Cheers!

Just Jeff
09-04-2006, 12:16
I parked at Oconee and took a shuttle to Table Rock. I paid the daily fee and they didn't make me pay for each day. TR may be different, obviously, or the policy may have changed since Apr 2005.

FHThiker
09-04-2006, 12:58
I parked at Oconee and took a shuttle to Table Rock. I paid the daily fee and they didn't make me pay for each day. TR may be different, obviously, or the policy may have changed since Apr 2005.

You may be right about only paying for one day. I've had a park pass for 3 consecutive years so I don't worry about it; however, I remember going to Paris Mtn State Park in SC a few times years back for more than one day and they making me pay for each day I was there...could be different now, or just for a vehicle parking.

white rabbit
09-04-2006, 14:48
I parked at Oconee and took a shuttle to Table Rock. I paid the daily fee and they didn't make me pay for each day. TR may be different, obviously, or the policy may have changed since Apr 2005.

What did the shuttle ride cost you and who did you use?

Just Jeff
09-04-2006, 15:34
The FT webpage had a list of shuttle volunteers, so I picked one and called. His name was Dan. Shuttlers can't really charge w/o a business license so you just donate what you think is appropriate. I gave him $20 but figured out later that probably wasn't enough. This was the first shuttle I'd ever taken and he said it was fair when I asked, but when I got to Table Rock, Tha Wookie said, "That's a really good deal." So I started adding up costs...I probably covered his gas and not much more, and it took ~4 hours from his morning. Next time I'll offer more.

So figure up gas costs and what you think their time is worth, and remember that w/o making it worth their time the volunteer pool will go away. ("Worth their time" isn't always measured in $$, though.)

Nightwalker
09-05-2006, 00:50
As far as parking, I believe you'll need to purchase a permit for each day your vehicle is parked. It's only $2/day. I have one of the SC State Park passes, so it's not an issue (and then I have someone picking me up at Oconee SP 6 days later...).
You can either pay for one day at the gate or get a visitors pass at the office across the street. Fill out a backcountry registration form describing your car and telling how long you'll be gone and you'll have no problems.

Have a great hike!

Just Jeff
09-05-2006, 01:06
That's one thing I didn't really like. I had to display the pass on my dashboard, and it said where I was hiking from and how long I'd be parked there. Not cool.

ed bell
09-05-2006, 08:32
That's one thing I didn't really like. I had to display the pass on my dashboard, and it said where I was hiking from and how long I'd be parked there. Not cool.I thought I remembered my pass having dates on it, but not actual trail info. Considering the fact that the park gates are locked up every night, it didn't bother me too much. I would feel uncomfortable having all the info for everyone to read though.

Just Jeff
09-05-2006, 12:11
I don't remember exactly what it said, but I remember the park lady telling me to write either "Foothills Trail" or "Table Rock" on it. I probably could have told her no and been ok. But it did have the expected date on there so they'd know to come look for me if I got in trouble...the date that would tell criminals how long my car would be unattended in the lot.

But obviously I didn't feel overly concerned b/c I left it there. I always empty it out and open the glove box and console, though, and I have insurance for anything that happens.

So the pass thing isn't really a big deal, just an annoyance. Wouldn't give it a second thought in my decision to hike the FT again.