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Burrell's Ford to Cheohee Road
I hiked the stretch of the Foothills Trail from Burrell's Ford to Cheohee Road with three friends on October 10-11, 2003. We used the Foothills Trail Conference Guide to the Foothills Trail (3d ed. 1998). The guide was very accurate and helpful.
We hiked with my 13 yearold, Emily, Ed, a friend at my church, and his 13 year old son, Johnny. We took our kids out of school at noon so we could get started on the trail and make camp before dark. From Greenville, it took about 1:30 to get to the trail head.
We planned to stop after hiking 2 miles on the first day. Rain was threatening us, so we hiked to the camp 2 miles into the trail. The campsite was pretty small, enough room for one tent in the area near a previously used fire pit. There were a couple places to pitch a tent up in the woods around the area.
The campsite was located within 15 feet of the Chattooga River, and we obtained our water from the River. About 1/10 a mile downriver was a rocky outcropping that extended 3/4 of the way across the river. We ate dinner there, and enjoyed views upo and down the river.
It began to rain, around dark, and rained heavily all night, especially so in the morning. Consequently, we did not get started the next day until around noon.
The trail meandered back adn forth next to the River over the next several miles. At one point, the trail was not safe to hike with a heavy backpack unless you don't mind soaking your boots in the River. Thus, I recommend you take the alternative routes that are available to bypass the lowlying areas next to the River, particularly if, as now, there has been plenty of rain.
Our trail guide identified Salt Trough Ford as a likely camping place. However, this site was in the sand directly on the Chattooga River. It was a beautiful spot, though, directly across a rock wall on the Georgia side of the River.
This section of the trail is pretty well-traveled. All along, we saw car campers who were on the trail after hiking from nearby camp sites at Burrell's Ford, Lick Log Creek, and Nicholson Ford Road.
The trail crosses many small creeks and streams on numerous bridges. The trees are fifty percent evergreen, mostly young Hemlock trees. We hiked a bit too early to benefit from the spectacular colors of fall, but trees were beginning to cast themselves in muted hues of gold, crimson, and vermillion.
This hike had several climbs and ascents, but nothing extraordinarily steep. However, by the time we finished on Saturday evening around 5:30 p.m., our group was pretty exhausted.
This was a very nice hike and I would recommend it to anyone.
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