A waterfall is a perfect destination for a day hike. In this guide, Thomas King lists 125 of them in the mountains of upstate South Carolina. Ranging from roadside to 6 miles in length, these hikes feature some of the most famous-and some of the most remote-waterfalls in the region. Each entry includes complete driving and hiking directions, trail length and estimated hiking time, difficulty rating, and a detailed description of the waterfall itself, including a photograph. There's also information on how to classify and rate waterfalls.
Tom [King] knows the terrain and the trail well. As a volunteer with the U.S. Forest Service and the South Carolina State Park Service, he keeps the course clear, helping maintain the trails by cutting brush and building steps. One of our state's leading waterfalls experts, the Anderson native has hiked the Upstate since he was a teenage boy, finding and filing information on falls in Oconee, Pickens, and Greenville Counties. Tom's pictures and descriptions of falls resulted . . . in Waterfall Hikes of Upstate South Carolina
. The book features pictures of, directions to, and comments on 92 falls in the area.
After an opening section of his book in which he covers basic matters such as classifying waterfalls, making suggestions on how to photograph them, rating their beauty, and the vital matter of trails, King devotes the bulk of his 232-page book to individual waterfall hikes. For each waterfall he includes a description of its type (such as fan, block, sluice, or tiered), a rating, the stream which creates it, trail length and difficulty, height, hiking time, the U. S. Geological Survey quadrangular map covering it, and the fee (if any). There are also driving directions to the trailhead and careful, detailed descriptions of the walking portion of one s waterfall adventure. . . . In addition to being an inveterate hiker and waterfall wanderer, King is also a talented photographer. The book offers small inset photos of each waterfall, and on the facing page for most waterfalls there is a photo of a native wildflower. The result is something which transcends the typical guidebook to which hikers and wilderness walkers have become accustomed. Yes, all the information is there, but the reader/user gets a visual treat in the bargain.
—Spartanburg (SC) Herald-Journal
King identifies 92 waterfalls in the Upstate, which he rates on appearance and accessibility. Take his trail ratings with a grain of salt-remember, he's writing for families, not experienced hikers-but his driving and trail directions are precise, and his photos are helpful in determining whether you want to visit a particular waterfall. This book is a good resource for families with small children. Adults may enjoy the walking an solitude, but children need a destination-a purpose for going into the woods. In addition, most hikes are less than two miles roundtrip. King's book is bound to become 'the' waterfall book for the Upstate.