Monday, May 30, 2011

Brasstown Falls

Amy and Jack's Memorial Day Weekend Getaway to Georgia

Chapter 1 - Brasstown Falls
Oconee County, SC
Saturday, May 28th, 2011

Last month for one of my birthday gifts, Amy booked a weekend stay at a Bed and Breakfast in Northern Georgia.

We just got back from our little weekend getaway and I have over 700 photos to go through.  Rather than going through them all and writing the complete trip report at once, I am going to do it in batches starting with the first stop of our trip.

We left Spartanburg early Saturday Morning.  Since we would not be able to check in until after 3:00pm, I planned a few stops along the way, Brasstown Falls being the first.

I visited Brasstown Falls once about 6 years ago and I have been wanting to get back with the new camera (not actually new anymore, but still newer and better than the one I had during my last visit). 

Middle Brasstown Falls (aka Brasstown Veil)

The Brasstown Falls trail is very steep, but since it is only about a quarter mile long, I knew Amy could handle it.  It descends about 200-feet in elevation passing by three significant waterfalls along Brasstown Creek.  They are close enough together that there are spots along the trail you can actually see all three drops at the same time, but for photo purposes it is best to view them individually. 

I decided to save the picture taking until we got to the bottom and then work our way back up.  Lower Brasstown Falls (also know as Brasstown Sluice) is about 35-feet tall and is much larger than my photos show.  The entire creek volume is squeezed into a narrow channel dropping diagonally down the rock wall.

Lower Brasstown Falls  (aka Brasstown Sluice)

Middle Brasstown Falls (aka Brasstown Veil) is also about 35-foot tall, but is completely different from the lower falls.  Here the creek is spread wide and the drop is a free fall instead of a slide. 

Middle Brasstown Falls  (aka Brasstown Veil)

Side view of Middle Brasstown Falls

The upper drop consists of a series of cascades totaling about 50-ft high.  It is my least favorite of the three falls, but still a very scenic and photo worthy waterfall.  Especially when the Rhododendron and Mountain Laurel are blooming along side.

Upper Brasstown Falls (aka Brasstown Cascades)

Besides the fact that this is one of the greatest series of waterfalls in South Carolina, Another reason why I wanted to make a return visit to Brasstown Falls is to find Little Brasstown Falls, which I didn't know existed back when I first visited. 

Little Brasstown Falls is not on the main creek, but a smaller tributary stream.  However, it does require crossing Brasstown Creek.  Amy elected to pass on that, but I managed to find a spot where a few fallen trees gave me a safe and dry crossing.

Little Brasstown Falls is a nice added bonus and I bet it would be really awesome if you caught it right after a heavy rain.
Little Brasstown Falls

Memorial Stone at the base of Little Brasstown Falls

The complete set of Brasstown Falls Photos are posted here:

1. From Westminster, SC head west on US76 for about 12 miles and turn left on Brasstown Road
2. Drive 4.2 miles (dirt for last 1.5 miles, but drivable in just about any type vehicle) and turn right onto FS751 (just before a small bridge)
3.  Drive to end of FS751 (about a half mile) and park.  (note:  the parking area can get very tight and crowded during busy weekends so plan your visit early in the day or during a week day)
4.  The trail is obvious and follows the creek downstream.  Parts of the trail are very steep and will require the use of all four limbs!  If you don't like scrambling, you might want to skip this.  Also not recommended for small children.
5.  The "trail" ends at the base of the Lower Falls.
6.  For Little Brasstown Falls, check out the campsite just before the main trail starts descending downhill.  You should be able to see the tributary creek and waterfall upstream.  Find the best place to cross the main creek and work your way upstream to the waterfall.


Mark said...

Wow Jack, great set of photos and writeup! I need to go visit those falls, they look beautiful!

Looking forward to the next set of photos.


HemlockMan said...

My favorite, as far as the photos are concerned, is Little Brasstown Falls. Wonder what happened to "Timmy"?