Last Saturday we hiked with Upstate Hiking on the Hunting Trail at Isaqueena on land owned by Clemson University which is part of the experimental forest. I had snagged a trail map put out by SORBA at our local REI although there are some maps on the Internet.
The trailhead is a little hard to find but we had scouted the trailhead before and I was looking for a house with a trampoline in the front yard. The trailhead is right past that. Probably parking for 4 cars comfortably.
It was a small group as we had cancelled our kayaking trip due to rain and the threat of thunderstorms. Our group still wanted to get out and do something and this was a hike I had set aside for a “rainy day.”
Doyle Bottom is a forest road and at the beginning it tends to be rocky. Hunting trail is a short hike in, maybe 10 to 15 minutes no more on your left. It is really a very pleasant hike through the woods, rolling up and down. The trail is narrow and would be described as a single track for bicycles. At one point, we did get close enough to the lake to see some nice views. The lake views come later in the hike. I’m guessing at least an hour in. There was not much in the way of wildflowers on this hike so we had to make do with fungus and tree stumps for photo opportunities.
As we came around to Doyle Bottom again, we started to look in earnest for Keowee Heights which is a historical site. There is a cemetery and remains of a spring house off several side trails. We also hiked the trail up to where the house would have stood but all that is left are bricks scattered around and a bird house that someone put up. Here’s a link to the history of Keowee Heights and its owners. Photo to the right is a view of the spring house. There is a little creek nearby. Photo on the left is the bird house at the home site. Someone has a sense of humor.
We lost the trail back down from the house to Doyle Bottom. The group fanned out looking for the trail which we did find very quickly. That being said sometimes it is better to double back to where you came from and see if you can find the markings.
We hiked back on Doyle Bottom which really was a flat red dirt road. Mileage was about 7 or so. I liked this hike and it is very close to Greenville. Probably wouldn’t hike there in the summer as it would be pretty warm but great in the other seasons.