Rim of the Gap Trail

Jones Gap State park, South Carolina

Distance4.2mi
Elevation Gain4,126ft
Trailhead Elevation1,368ft
Top3,003ft
Elevation Min/Max1343/3003ft
Elevation Start/End1368/1368ft

Rim of the Gap Trail

Rim of the Gap Trail is a hiking trail in Greenville County, South Carolina. It is within Jones Gap State park and Caesar's Head State Park. It is 4.2 miles long and begins at 1,368 feet altitude. Traveling the entire trail is 8.6 miles with a total elevation gain of 4,126 feet. The trail ends near the Cliff Falls attraction. This trail connects with the following: Pinnacle Pass Trail, 6 & 20 Connector Trail, John Sloan Trail and Jones Gap Trail.

Rim of the Gap Trail Reviews

4
4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars
icon6 Total
5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars
7/16/2016
This is a great hike for the advance hiker. I began at Jones Gap State Park and hiked to Caesar Head Ranger Station. The trail begins easy, but once you pass the second spur "Pink" trail about 2 miles in, it begins to get hard. It is more of an obstacle course than a hike, over, under, around, even through "fat man squeeze" rocks and drop offs. While constantly looking over the edge of cliffs, down into Jones Gap. The views would be better in Autumn or early winter. However, you cross a lot of small mountain streams that would make it very slippery or icy in winter and believe me you do not want to start sliding, the trail's name is exactly what it means, "Rim of the Gap". It is a challenge and breath taking and exciting all the way through. There are several different distances posted for this trail but I think the total distance from Jones Gap to Caesar Head is about 5.2 miles including the Elliot "Purple" trail that ends at the Caesar Head Ranger Station. The yellow markers on the trail are easy to follow, there has been a lot of maintenance recently done on the trail, and no problems following the trail. I would be careful on a few of the ladders you have to climb up or down, they do need to be replaced and there are two steep rock drop off you have to be careful on. But hey, if you want an easy trail hike the Swamp Rabbit. It took my friend and I 5.5 hours to complete this hike. You can't go fast while on the Rim, one wrong step or a tumble and you're over the side. If you want a challenge, that will test your hiking skills, hike "The Rim of the Gap". You will love it. Also, I get tired of hearing people say "This trail isn't for old people". I'm 60, and did the trail, just make sure you're in good shape before attempting this trail, it's not a trail to hold hands on and skip along counting butter flies and picking flowers.
0
Comments
2 out of 5 stars2 out of 5 stars2 out of 5 stars2 out of 5 stars2 out of 5 stars
11/24/2009
I don't recommend this trail at all even though it is one of the most beautiful and unique in the Southeast. If you do attempt, it is best to plan an "in an out" so you can turn around if you feel uncomfortable. Not for dogs, children, backpackers, loop hikers, or novice hikers. I am a Smoky Mountain 900 miler and have hiked all trails in Jones Gap and Ceaser's Head and would rate this as the trail most in need of preparation and caution. Pinnacle Pass has similar features and sights without the steep dropoffs and questionable footing.
0
Comments
5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars
8/1/2009
We camped at Jones Gap State Park in August of this year and the weather was perfect. Not too, too hot and nice and cool in the evening. The tent camping is phenomenal. We did the Rim of the Gap trail with our Bernese Mtn dog - DO NOT TAKE DOGS OR SMALL CHILDREN ON THIS TRAIL. It was a beautiful but very treacherous hike with a lot of dropoffs, ladders, and slippery rock scrambling. I would highly recommend it for experienced hikers but it is not a casual, take-the-family-for-a-stroll-in-the-woods trek.
0
Comments
5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars5 out of 5 stars
7/12/2009
Ditto to previous post. This trail can be dangerous. Be careful. Challenging and fun, though.
0
Comments
4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars4 out of 5 stars
4/17/2009
Unlike previous poster, the ranger told me that this trail would require a lot of "rock scrambling". I thought I knew what was in store, but... This was an exhausting hike strapped with a backpack (it would even be exhausting w/o the pack, though), but it was fun! Unless you are in perfect shape, or just a sucker for punishment – though, I'd recommend starting from Caesar's Head SP. Coming from Jone's Gap SP requires a lot of up-hill climbing whereas Caesar's Head will take you *down* most (not all) those hills. Regardless of which park you start from, you are in for a challenge! This was, by far, the most challenging short-distance hike I've ever attempted. Climbing 4' - 6' embankments with the help of roots, rocks, or (if your lucky) a ladder. Squeezing through the “weight watchers” rock formation. Walking across waterfalls with the help of nothing but a cable. A 2' wide path with with a rock-face on one side and a 60' drop on the other.. This is one of those rare trails that I'll remember for years to come.. The ranger we talked to gave us a lot of information (and a lot of warning about how difficult this trail would be). One thing she did fail to mention was this is *not* a dog-friendly hike. We had our weim with us. He was able to navigate everything but one ladder (I had to unstrap my pack and carry him down that one). Still, had I know what we were up against, the dog would have stayed home, or we would have taken the much easier Jones Gap Trail to our destination. I would recommend this trail to anyone who is (1) in shape and (2) looking for a hike they can brag to their friends about.
0
Comments
3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars3 out of 5 stars
4/9/2006
Was encouraged/mislead by ranger to take this route instead of Pinnacle Pass. We were carrying overnight packs! Places where you have to hold onto thin cable while inching along an 18 inch walkway across the face of a small waterfall, with a 100 ft. drop or more behind you. At least four, large wooden ladders to get up/down places which were well over our heads. Several places where we had to remove our packs, climb up, and hand packs up to each other. STRENUOUS!! We camped on Pinnacle Pass trail, midway through Rim Of The Gap, and it was a beautiful night: full moon, view of lights in the valley, saw some coyotes up close. There's no real way to convey the fact that this is what I would call a hike that requires more "technical" skills (boulder scrambling, climbing up on rocks, traversing steep inclines). We shouldn't have been out there with 35 pound overnight packs, and a person definitely shouldn't be out there if they are not in excellent physical shape or if they have any potential medical difficulties. I recommend this for a VERY challenging day hike for experienced individuals. Some great views, but the real attraction of the hike was the challenging experience.
0
Comments

Rim of the Gap Trail Photos

Trail Information

Jones Gap State park
Nearby City
Jones Gap State park
Parks
Mountain Bridge Wilderness Area, Caesar's Head State Park, 8155 Geer Highway, Cleveland, SC 29635; (864) 836-6115.
Local Contacts
Mountain Bridge Wilderness Area map, available at Jones Gap and Caesar's Head State Parks; Standingstone Mountain and Table Top USGS quads
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Dec 2018