Raven Cliff Falls, South Carolina

As I’m starting the hike along the trail to Raven Cliff Falls, I meet a couple that had lived in Michigan, but now lives in South Carolina.  I tell them I’m visiting for a few days, and they inform me that Raven Cliff Falls is one of the most visited falls in the area.  At the time, I thought, “Cool. I hope that means Raven Cliff Falls is impressive.”  Well, after arriving at the viewpoint for the falls, I would have to wonder why anybody would want to put the amount of time and effort needed to view the falls.

It probably didn’t start off very well when I couldn’t even find a parking spot.  Finally, after wandering around in the rental car, I found that there was addition parking north of the state park parking area.  It is graciously provided by the owner of an inn.  This means I have to add a small but additional amount to the hike.  From the get go, you can tell the hike will be interesting, especially on the return.  It’s moderately steep on the way down.  While there is a trail, there are points where the trail clearly devolves into “sliding” over logs to reconnect back to the trail.  It was ok on the way down, but even more interesting on the way back.

Now it’s not a LONG hike, about 4 miles round trip, but it is consistently up-and-down going.  I definitely felt worn out after this hike, and I honestly could not wait for it to end.  The hike to the falls might be more worthwhile if the view was subsequently worthwhile…but it’s just not!  You are at least a 1/4 of a mile from the falls, and even though it’s over 400′ tall, it disappears in the background.  A 55-300 mm lens is an absolute MUST, which I did not own at the time.  My 18-55 lens makes the waterfall look puny, even after editing.  Oh well…To each their own.

Directions:

  1. Head north on US-276 past Caesars Head State Park for about a mile to the parking area leading to the falls.  If parking is not available there, head a little further north to the sign indicating additional parking.
  2. From the trail head, essentially follow the signs.  At first, it doesn’t seem clear, but it’s really hard to miss.  The hike feels very long.

Accessibility: 2/10 (difficult)
Height: 420′
Length of Hike: 4.4 miles round-trip

Raven Cliff Falls (33)

Raven Cliff Falls in March 2009

Where in the World is Raven Cliff Falls?

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