Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Opossum Creek Falls

Amy and Jack's Memorial Day Weekend Getaway to Georgia

Chapter 2 - "A Busload of Bikini Babes"
Oconee County, SC
Saturday, May 28th, 2011


Opossum Creek Falls

Opossum Creek Falls is one that I have been wanting to get to for years, but have never gotten around to visiting.
Opossum Creek Falls

A little bit of pre-trip research revealed that there is quite a bit of conflicting information out there on the Internet. Some sources rate the trail as "Easy" while others rate it as "Strenuous" or "Difficult". Also, the mileages listed are anywhere from 1.5 miles to 5.0 miles. My most trusted sources of information led me to believe it was something Amy would be able to handle.

We had no trouble finding the trailhead, but I was a little disappointed to see a large bus in the parking area. I don't like crowds and I wasn't expecting to run into a whole lot of people on this hike.

The Bikini Babe Bus

The trail starts out by gradually descending from the road into the forest, before leveling out for a good ways and eventually meeting up with Camp Branch. There was a pretty good display of wildflowers along the trail which probably would have been even better a few weeks earlier.

Wildflowers along the Trail

After about a mile, the trail starts descending again and Camp Branch becomes a long series of cascades. Many of these cascades looked like they might be worth checking out, but they would all require a steep scramble down from the trail.

We hadn't seen a single other person along the trail, but as we got closer to the river we could hear a large group of people having a good time down by the river. Again, I don't really like crowds! Unless of course the crowd consists largely of a bunch of college girls in Bikinis!

Bikini Babes at the Chattooga River

Amy didn't seem as impressed as I was?

From the Chattooga River, the trail turns left and heads through a few campsites where Opossum Creek enters into the Chattooga River. Don't cross Opossum Creek, but instead take the trail upstream on the left side of the creek.

After a short distance the trail rock hops across the smaller Camp Branch shortly upstream from where Camp Branch merges into Opossum Creek. The most difficult part of this crossing was avoiding getting slapped by my wife as we passed by several more bikini babes bathing in the creek.

After crossing Camp Branch, the trail continues up along the larger Opossum Creek. The final stretch of trail gets a bit rocky and some minor scrambling is required to make your way to the base of Opossum Creek Falls.
Jack and Amy at Opossum Creek Falls

This is a really nice 50-foot waterfall! Unfortunately the bright sun did not make for optimal photo conditions. I kept hoping for a stray cloud to move in front of the sun for a few minutes, but it never happened.  A few more Bikini Babes showed up to make things a little better.

Bikini Babe at Opossum Creek Falls

The hike out wasn't too bad except for the 90-degree temperatures and near 100% Humidity.  It didn't take much to convince Amy that we needed to stop for Ice Cream after the hike!

The full set of Opossum Creek Falls photos is posted here:
http://outdoors.webshots.com/album/580279760sOVNDx


After completing the hike, this is what I believe to be accurate information:
Mileage = 5.0 miles round trip
2.2 miles to the Chattooga River + an additional 0.3 miles to the waterfall = 2.5 miles one way

Difficulty = Moderate.  The trail drops approximately 700-feet of elevation over the first 2.2 miles down to the Chattooga, meaning that you have to re-gain those 700-feet on the hike out.  The final short stretch to the base of the waterfall requires some minor scrambling.

Directions:
1. From Westminster, SC head west on US76 for 13.3 miles (1.3 miles past the turn for Brasstown Falls).
2. Turn left onto Damascus Church Road just before the Long Creek Fire Station
3. Drive 1.9 miles and turn right onto Turkey Ridge Road (FS755). Turkey Ridge Road is dirt/gravel but is drivable in just about any vehicle
4. Drive 2.3 miles and look for the trailhead on the left. Small pulloff/parking areas are located on both sides of the road just past the trailhead.

3 comments:

HemlockMan said...

I'll take my one waterfall bikini babe over your busload.

Mark said...

Brilliant! You added that bus load of bikini clad girls to try to add more beauty t the falls!

I will be trying this technique in the future!

If you don't mind me asking... How do you get the bikini babes in the bus to follow you around??? Lol

Great work as always!

Anonymous said...

Great Photos.. I enjoyed them all and the bikini babes sure added more beauty to them :) At our car shows and events I get to photograph the guys cars with the Trophy Girls, they always make the cars look better LOL..
~Alan~