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South Carolina > Sumter National Forest
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Sumter National Forest

Andrew Pickens Ranger District- The Andrew Pickens Ranger District is a gateway to the mountains. It covers 79,000 acres of the Sumter National Forest. The Chattooga Wild and Scenic River forms the western boundary of the District.
Enoree Ranger District- The Enoree Ranger District is located on the Sumter National Forest, around the town of Whitmire, between Union and Newberry. It offers many recreation opportunities including camping, canoeing, boating, hiking, and fishing.
Long Cane Ranger District- The Long Cane Ranger District is located in western South Carolina, along the Georgia border. Some popular activities on the District include canoeing, hiking, horseback riding, backpacking, mountain biking, motorcycling, camping and fishing.

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General Information

Description - The northwest portion of the Sumter National Forest serves as a gateway to the mountains of South Carolina, Georgia and North Carolina. This area is home to the Chattooga Wild and Scenic River, the Chattooga Picnic Area and Fishing Pier, the Foothill Trail, Ellicott Rock Wilderness and the Walhalla State Fish Hatchery. Parsons Mountain, Lick Fork Lake and Woods Ferry are three recreation areas on the Sumter offering scenery, outdoor activities and history.

The Chattooga Wild and Scenic River begins in mountainous North Carolina high on the slopes of the Appalachian Mountains--the start of a 50-mile journey that ends at Lake Tugaloo between South Carolina and Georgia. The river is one of the few remaining free-flowing streams in the Southeast. The setting is primitive; dense forests and undeveloped shorelines characterize the primitive nature of the area. The Chattooga Offers some of the best whitewater boating around. The river is also known for its excellent trout fishing opportunities. One can also hike along the river on the Chattooga Trail. Horseback riding is allowed on the nearby Rocky Gap/Willis Knob Horse Trail.

Ellicott Rock Wilderness covers 9,012 acres. This wilderness spreads across the corners of South Carolina, North Carolina, and Georgia. It also straddles the 15,432-acre Chattooga Wild and Scenic River Corridor. The steep terrain of the Ellicott Rock Wilderness offers numerous mountains and waterfalls to explore.

Recreation - Visitors to the Sumter National Forest find many recreational opportunities. Boating, fishing, hunting, hiking, horseback riding, motorcycle riding, wildlife viewing, camping and picnicking are a few of the most popular activities. Developed campgrounds and dispersed or primitive camping is available. Canoeing is popular on the Enoree and Tyger Rivers and Turkey and Stevens Creek. Recreational fishing is very popular, with rivers, streams and lakes located throughout the forests.

Hikers may enjoy slow, leisurely hikes, day trips, or extended overnight hikes, depending on the experience you seek. Some trails are dedicated to hiking, a few have interpretive signs, and some are available for horseback riders or hikers. Winter-weather hiking can be quite enjoyable in South Carolina but always go prepared for freezing weather along ridge top trails during winter months.

Climate - Climate on the Sumter National Forest varies with elevation and location. The area generally has a temperate climate, with cool winters and warm, humid summers. Snow and freezing temperatures are possible in the winter at the higher elevations. Thunderstorms are possible throughout the year but most common in the spring and summer. Tropical storms occasionally strike the coast during the hurricane season.

Location - The Sumter National Forest is located in three areas of South Carolina. The Andrew Pickens Ranger District lies in the mountains west of Walhalla, in the northwest corner of the state. The other two districts form part of the Piedmont. The Enoree Ranger District is located along the Georgia border, to the west of Greenwood and Edgefield. Enoree Ranger District surrounds the town of Whitmire, between the towns of Union and Newberry. The National Forests of South Carolina are Headquartered in the South Carolina capital city of Columbia.

Current Conditions & Trip Reports

Trip Reports:
Add your own trip Report! Newly re-released feature. One of the most popular features on Wildernet, trip reports allow you to share your experiences with others. This is an invaluable resource for determining what to expect on your outdoor adventure, so please participate! To prevent spamming, you must be a registered user of Wildernet in order to submit a trip report

Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: We hiked the 8.2 miles from Burrells Ford to Lick Log Creek. What an amazing walk! The trail along the Chattooga has some of the most beautiful views imaginable. It took us about 4 hours with time to stop for lunch. I highly recommend it to anyone with good walking shoes! Once clear of the Burrells Ford camping area we encountered only two people. Follow the white blazes!!!

Filed By: Janice (Pickens South Carolina, SC)
Number of People Encountered: 0-10 ppl
Recommend to a Friend: Highly
Report: Went with Pickens High school to do eco clean-up. very beautiful scenery, lovely views. Spendid waterfall. excellent trails. Very well maintained. Just spend the day and enjoy

More Information

Contact Information:
Sumter National Forest, 4923 Broad River Road , Columbia, SC, 29201, Phone: 803-561-4000

Additional Information:
Midlands Region - The Midlands Region of South Carolina includes the middle portion of the state, between the Upcountry to the northwest and the Low country to the southeast. It surrounds the city of Columbia.
South Carolina National Forests & Parks - The South Carolina Forests and Parks includes areas managed by the U.S. Forest Service and the National Park Service. These areas are scattered throughout the state.

Francis Marion National Forest - Official agency website.


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