The Thompson River - Foothills Trail- SC/NC - June 16, 2009

Today's hike started at the Bad Creek Project (Duke Power) trail parking lot. We took the connector trail down to the Foothills Trail and hiked to the Thompson River just below the bridge for lunch on the rocks . Hiking distance 7.2 miles round trip.

HIKERS - John Bellamy, June Bellamy, Phil Brownrigg, Greta Driggers, Jim Driggers, Pam Euliss, Stephen Gales, Bill Hunt, Dick Metzgar, Jeanne O'Connor, Bob Magee, Donna Presley, Tony Presley, Vic Robson, Dan Ross, Dave Standard, David Whitaker and Geri Whitaker.

TRAIL INFORMATION - This portion of the Foothills Trail has some very significant hills on a well-maintained path. A very nice destination of the beautiful boulder-filled Thompson River. There are lots of nice Rhododendrons and Mountain Hydrangeas.

Today's hiking distance - 7.2 miles with large elevation changes - somewhat strenuous.

Directions: From Seneca SC, take Scenic Highway 11 past Tamassee, to Salem, SC continue to the intersection SC 11 and SC 130. Turn left onto 130 and drive approx. 10 miles and look for the Bad Creek Project on the right. Drive up to the gate and it will open automatically if it is not already open. Drive down this road for a half mile or so and you will see a sign for the Foothills Trail access. Turn left and proceed about a quarter mile to the parking lot.

Another great day for a hike! Partly to mostly sunny and very warm. Temperatures ranged from 72 to 84 degrees F.

FLOWERS IN BLOOM: Daisy Fleabane, Rosebay Rhododendron, Carolina Rhododendron, Mountain Laurel, Sweet Azalea, Mountain Hydrangea, Sourwood, Pipsissawa, Skullcap, Tall Bluet, Yellowroot, Rattlesnake Weed, Whorled Loosestrife, Milkwort, Yellow Star Grass, Galax, Ground Cedar and Nightshade.

BIRDS IDENTIFIED: Red Shouldered Hawk, Redwing Blackbird, Crow, Pine Warbler, Oven Bird, Tufted Titmouse, Pileated Woodpecker, Dark Eyed Junco, Cardinal, Hooded Warbler, White Breasted Nuthatch, Red Eyed Vireo, Rose Breasted Grosbeak, Scarlet Tananger, Black Throated Green Warbler, Black Throated Blue Warbler, Carolina Wren, Carolina Chickadee, Black and White Warbler.

Other fauna- Salamanders and Redhorse Suckers.

scroll down for photos.......

The Bad Creek Trail access parking lot.
Trail sign at the start along with extra hiking sticks.
Crossing the bridges across the Whitewater River.
The Whitewater River.
Mushrooms of the week!
There are several "rustic" bridges and stairs on this portion of the Foothills Trail.
Trail map shows that we hiked in SC and NC today.
Lots of beautiful Mountain Hydrangeas.
The Rhododendrons are beginning to bloom!
Crossing the Thompson River Bridge.
Lunchtime on the rocks below the bridge.
Our lunchtime view from the rocks.
The beautiful Thompson River
More lunchtime relaxation.
The OFHC gang for today's hike. (l-r front) Tony Presley, Donna Presley, "Cotton" the trail dog, Steve Gales, Jim Driggers, Gretta Driggers, Geri Whitaker and Pam Euliss. (l-r back) Phil Brownrigg, Dave Standard, Jeanne O'Connor, Bill Hunt, Dan Ross, June Bellamy, John Bellamy, David Whitaker, Dick Metzgar, Bob Magee and Vic Robson.

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