Tidbit of the Day: Mountain Streams Are Still Cold in April

Last weekend a group of us headed down to Caesar Head State Park in South Carolina. It’s a beautiful area, with lots of creeks and streams that course and burble their way through lush, picturesque valleys and forests. And because it’s on the eastern edge of the Appalachian Mountains, there are plenty of waterfalls as well– not just little rocky cascades, but tall ones, which drop tens or hundreds of feet down sheer cliffs and from jutting overhangs.

When I was about five years old and living in Houston, our house backed onto a medium-size creek that ran through a wooded area. It became known in our family as the Creeky Place, a little area I could go to watch the water flow over the rocks and under the canopy of trees. It was too dirty (and likely too dangerous) to swim in, but it was relaxing, and fun to go back and visit. Ever since then, there’s been something about forest streams and creeks that I love. Particularly if it’s the sort of area that runs over rocks and creates paths that you can scramble across, or calm pools amidst the chaos of the running water, or places you can sit and read a book. Simply being in the vicinity of a forest creek recharges my batteries, even inspires my writing, and serves as a great reminder that the simple pleasures in life really are the best.

For someone like me, Caesar Head State Park and the surrounding area was heaven. I could have spent
entire days not going more than 500 feet from our campsite on a creek, and that was just one little area. Creeks crisscrossed each other all over the park, and there were picturesque campsites galore… I’ll definitely have to visit here again, sometime when I can take it at my own pace.

This time, though, we had an itinerary, places to explore, and waterfalls to see– all of which were impressive. My favorite was Rainbow Falls, a 100-foot cascade where you could pretty much get right under it (hence the title of the blog post). Luckily, it was a warm Spring day, and my clothes dried pretty quick.

Moonshine Falls was another fun one, with a little cavern in the back where some old rusty barrels still sat, left over from the illicit operation that gave the falls their name. (Click here for the full photoset on Flickr.)

So all in all, a good trip. Spring is probably my favorite backpacking season; hopefully we can squeeze in another trip or two before the heat of summer sets in.

Advertisements