When it comes to Sassafras Mountain, it is indeed all about the journey. The circuitous drive to the so-so peak follows narrow rivers racing down steep, green hills through towns with names like Rocky Bottom and Crow Creek. Stretch out the approach by walking 9.1 miles on the Foothills Trail from Table Rock State Park to the summit. You'll pass 400-foot cliffs, the highest waterfall drop in the East, and the wild Chattooga River (where Deliverance was filmed).
-Mapped by Shannon Davis
TO TRAILHEAD: US 25 BR N to US 276 W. After 6.5 mi., L @ Y onto SC 288. After 10.5 mi., R onto Carrick Creek Rd.; L @ Y onto SC-S-39-25 to Table Rock State Park. Follow loop around to Nature Center and trailhead.
Distance: 8.62 mi
Total Time: none
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Sassafras Mountain Track
Points of Interest
Location: 35.032185, -82.700333
From Table Rock State Park Nature Center, head W on Pinnacle Trail; listen for waterfall
Location: 35.033501, -82.701736
L @ Y on Pinnacle Mtn. Trail; ahead are crossings over Carrick Creek
Location: 35.032585, -82.709282
L @ Y, following yellow blazes up forested mountainside
Location: 35.030399, -82.728767
Cross narrow bridge; go L @ Y. Take photos of 25-ft. Mills Creek Falls
Location: 35.029083, -82.733917
Bald Rock Overlook: Rest, grab lunch, or shoot a video snippet of Table Rock Mtn. to the NE. Continue NW
Location: 35.031883, -82.739098
L @ T onto white-blazed Foothills Trail. Side trip: Drop big pack and go straight for .25 mi. to quickly tag Pinnacle Mtn., second highest point in SC @ 3,425 ft.
Location: 35.028851, -82.744598
Rocky overlook with W views over green foothills
Location: 35.035133, -82.754036
Trail swings N
Location: 35.051483, -82.769135
Camp near old stone farmhouse. Over the years, campers have made elaborate stone furniture out of the crumbling remains. Day 2: Leave gear behind for the 4.4-mi. round-trip to Sassafras Mtn., SC?s highest peak
Location: 35.065166, -82.777168
USGS benchmark tags this 3,560-ft. peak (ironically, trees block views here). Return to camp and backtrack to trailhead
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