Hiking South Carolina
An extremely rugged day hike along a mountain trail with great views, particularly of splendid Falls Creek Falls. This is a tough one, one of the most difficult hikes in South Carolina. The rewards, however, are great. Falls Creek Falls is a wonder, and Falls Creek above the falls makes a gloriously peaceful picnic spot. Hospital Rock is only one of numerous dramatic rock outcroppings encountered along the hike, which follows two trails: Falls Creek Trail and Hospital Rock Trail.
The flora and fauna here resemble those found elsewhere in the mountains, but, whether flora or fauna, there seems to be more of it. The chestnut oak and Fraser magnolia are taller; the mountain laurel and rhododendron come up even thicker. Other trees include hickory, tulip poplar, northern red oak, red maple, white pine, eastern hemlock, sassafras, holly, redcedar, beech, and Carolina silver bell. Among the wildflowers, expect to see galax, white snakeroot, rattlesnake plantain, closed gentian, violets, spotted wintergreen, wild hydrangea, wild ginger, beautyberry, and a variety of asters. Other plants include fox grape, switch cane, Christmas fern, and bracken. The heavy foliage makes birds difficult to spot, but you may see red-shouldered hawk, pileated woodpecker, or chickadee.