Friday, December 10, 2010

Formerly, Friday: Whitewater Falls

Sorry I've been so patchy with posts, folks. Bad news has me headed across the pond for twelve glorious family-filled days tomorrow, and that doesn't really leave much time for hiking and backpacking, much to mine and Dad's chagrin. In lieu of a day hike, here's a little information on one of the jewels from North Carolina, the Land of Waterfalls!

Off of SC 130/NC 281, there is a recreation area with what has been proclaimed as the East's king of falls... you can't get very close to it due to a number of fatal accidents. Whitewater Falls is part of (originality, readers) Whitewater River! Whitewater River is a part of the Blue Ridge Escarpment, and the Foothills Trail makes for about 85 miles of volunteer-maintained hiking that meets the river at this recreation site.

The stop Steven and I made on our way home from a day trip to Highlands, NC took us to this North Carolina stop. It was late in the afternoon after a great day at the Nantahala National Forest, and this was the perfect wrap up of a day out with nature!

The recreation area of Whitewater Falls was incredibly clean and picturesque, with vantage points not only of the falls, but neighboring Lake Keowee in the wee distance. The paved walk up the hill from the parking area at Whitewater Falls takes you to a decent overlook of the falls, but we agile folk took the extra 150-something stairs down to another overlook that gives further access down to the Foothills Trail along Whitewater River. I thought that view was far more spectacular; I only wish we'd gotten there earlier in the day, so as to night have to fight with my camera's flash options to capture the impressive scale of the 411 foot drop that is North Carolina's Whitewater Falls...

Forgive the horrid photograph. The autumn was wrapping itself up; this was probably one of the last warm weekends we had, the last weekend of October! I'd love to see how lush it all looks late in the spring; but we got lucky as we didn't have to angle around foliage to see the immensity of the crashing waters! The roar of the falls is impressive in and of itself; Steven and I may not have hiked to it, but we highly recommend this stop if you find yourself travelling the SC/NC border!

For more information, click: Whitewater Falls Recreation Area

Thanks as always, and expect another Formerly, Friday in two weeks time if all goes well! If not, enjoy the sounds of crickets!

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