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Time Outside: Waldrop Stone Falls

One of the nice things about the outdoors at Clemson is just how close cool stuff is. That is especially true about this week’s subject: Waldrop Stone Falls.

Waldrop Stone Falls is a 20-foot cascade at the end of a series of neat rapids generated by the Waldrop Stone Falls creek falling into the Twelve Mile River gorge. The creek drains into the Twelve Mile branch of Lake Hartwell in the Todd Creek section of the North Clemson Experimental Forest.

Be sure to park at the new trailhead on Madden Bridge Road, just west of R.C. Edwards Middle School, in what is currently a cleared timber field. Going up a logging road for a quarter mile, a right turn onto a woodland trail will take you another quarter-mile down to the bottom of the falls.

An unofficial trail will take you about a half-mile to the shore of Lake Hartwell and provides a great fishing spot for those inclined.

The official loop continues above the falls on the near side and follows the creek up towards Waldrop Stone Road, with numerous benches to stop and enjoy the many rapids. Shortly before the road, a trail crossing back across the creek will take you back to the logging road, which provides sweeping views of the Twelve Mile valley as you wind back towards the trailhead.

All together, the official loop makes about a mile and a half journey from the trailhead on Madden Bridge and a great afternoon hike on a busy day.

Finally, remember to park at the Madden Bridge trailhead (marked on Google Maps as the Waldrop Stone Falls parking) and to not park along Waldrop Stone Road. This new trailhead was built in 2020 to accommodate the traffic that was blocking Waldrop Stone Road.

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Corey Glenn
Corey Glenn, Asst. News Editor
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