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Recommended if you plan to hike or backpack in South Carolina…..

Hiking South Carolina

South Carolina offers a variety of easily accessible hikes for beginners and experts alike. This thorough guide features 60 of the state’s best hikes, including day hikes and multi-day excursions. Hikers can explore the state’s natural wonders along the Foothills Trail in the eastern mountains, the Long Cane Trail in the Savannah River Valley, or the Swamp Fox Trail near Charleston, among other places. Includes special mention of organized outings with experienced leaders on many of the state’s trails.

South Carolina: A Guide to Backcountry Travel & Adventure

From the coastal lowlands to the Appalachian Mountains, South Carolina offers outdoor travelers abundant opportuninties for adventure and a vast diversity of habitats to explore. Whether you’re a backpacker, kayaker, canoeist, fly-fisherman, outdoor photographer or nature lover, South Carolina: A Guide to Backcountry Travel and Adventure is the one indespensible guide to the state’s wild regions. “(Giffen) provides information on every oudoor activity that could conceivably take place there as well as how to get there and who to call for more information. If you had mud on your boots while reading the book, you’d already feel like you’ve been to an area.” – Walt Rhodes, The Charleston Post and Courier

Hiking South Carolina Trails

Discover South Carolina’s best scenic wilderness trails, historic and interpretive trails, garden walks, and oceanside rambles with this thoroughly updated guide. Whether you are a novice or seasoned hiker, you can choose from more than 200 trails and walks that delight the eyes and senses. Inside this guide you’ll find: details about each trail’s length, interconnections, access, and degree of difficulty; maps depicting elevations, trail routes, creeks, rivers, roads, and more; information on campgrounds, equestrian and bicycle trails, and trails with handicapped access; commentary on the area’s history vegetation, wildlife, and current attractions. Hiking South Carolina Trails is the perfect companion to hiking, backpacking, and strolling through the state’s most lovely landscapes. –This text refers to the Paperback edition.

Hiking Trails of the Southern Nantahala Wilderness, the Ellicott Wilderness, and the Chattooga National Wild and Scenic River

The scenic areas described in this book offer a wide variety of possibilities: you can dayhike a short trail, backpack a 23-mile segment of the Appalachian Trail, or finish all of the 37.5 mile Chattooga River Trail. This easy-to-follow guide will help both the novice hikers and experienced backpackers to enjoy trips into the wilderness.

Birdshooter’s Take: Tim Homan’s book has nearly 40 pages dedicated to the Chattooga River Trail (which shares some of it’s pathway with the Foothills and Bartram Trails) and he provides detailed information including directions to the trailhead, highs/lows of the hike, campsites, and tips for the hiker. My Recommendation: This is the ONLY trail guide that is currently available for the Chattooga River Trail. If you plan to day hike or thru-hike it, I highly recommend this book.

Long Trails Of The Southeast

Trekking the Appalachian Trail is no longer the solitary experience it once was. Backpackers looking for a less crowded, long-trail experience should grab Long Trails of the Southeast to discover the many other long-hike opportunities available in the Southeast. Long Trails covers 7 trails in 8 states, for a total of 600 miles of trails. Each trail description is divided into segments, and includes at-a-glance information offering details on length, trail condition, high-points, difficulty, tips, and trailhead directions. Vivid trail reports describe exactly what’s encountered along the way. Finally, a Trail Log provides mile-by-mile descriptions of the entire trail, including road crossings, water sources, shelters, and more. Whether hiking a trail in one outing or knocking it off in sections, hiking enthusiasts must have Long Trails of the Southeast as a part of their library.

Birdshooter’s Take: Johnny Molloy’s book has nearly 30 pages dedicated to the Benton MacKaye Trail and he provides detailed information on each of the eleven sections of the 90.9 mile route (which will eventually extend to 237 miles). Each section has directions to the trailhead, highs/lows of the hike, campsites, and tips for the hiker. My Recommendation: This was the only guidebook on the Benton MacKaye Trail until Tim Homan released his Hiking The Benton MacKaye Trail book in 2004 and it has some very detailed information on the route. If you do a lot of long distance hiking in the Southeast, this is a good book to get. If you just plan to hike the B.M.T., you might do better with Homan’s book (listed below). You should also visit the Benton MacKaye Trail Association website. They have section descriptions in Adobe pdf format along with trail and profile maps.

Guide To The Foothills Trail

The Foothills Trail Conference has created this comprehensive guide to the Foothills Trail which is currently in its third edition. It includes the history of the trail, helpful information for backcountry hikers, section descriptions and maps, supplemental information on spur trails and parking areas and a profile of the terrain on the trail. It is the currently the best source of data available on the Foothills Trail.

Birdshooter’s Take: Guide To The Foothills Trail details each of the fourteen sections of the route with trail, profile, and parking maps and detailed descriptions of both the Foothills Trail and the numerous spur routes that connect to it. My Recommendation: This is the best and only available guidebook to the Foothills Trail. Don’t day or thru-hike without it.

Best Hikes With Dogs Georgia And South Carolina

One cold November night in the Blood Mountain Wilderness in north Georgia, Steve Goodrich and his wife, Ashley, had to wrap themselves around their yellow lab, Rebel, under one sleeping bag. It was the last time they would fail to anticipate their dog’s special needs on the trail. Since then, Rebel and the Goodriches have hiked thousands of miles together in Georgia and South Carolina to select the best dog-friendly, dog-fun, and dog-safe trails in the region. Most hikes are on lightly traveled trails with few horses, bicycles, or motorized vehicles. Hikes avoid steep, rocky terrain and many offer lakes or streams as rewards. Potential dog hazards such as alligators or snakes are noted in the hike descriptions. Advice on hiking with dogs includes what to pack for your pooch–the Ten Canine Essentials and a doggy first-aid kit. A “Hike Summary” chart in the front of the book indicates trail length, water features, loop hikes, whether “best for fit dogs,” and more.

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