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  1. #1
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    Ride Report Enoree Passage of PT

    When completed, The Palmetto Trail will consist of 425 miles of multiple-use trails running across South Carolina from the North Carolina border to the Atlantic ocean---see this website http://www.palmettoconservation.org/maps.asp The trail is being built in phases called “passages” with close to 300 miles now open. Yesterday we rode section 3 of the Enoree passage mainly because we had never done it but also to check it out for a possible bikepacking trip later in the year. At 35.8 miles which consists of three sections of approximately 12 miles each, Enoree is the second longest passage (Swamp Fox in Francis Marion Nat Forest is longest at 47 miles). We rode section 3 which begins at Sedalia Campground near Cross Anchor.

    We found the beginning of the trail to be a bit confusing. A short distance from the campground the trail intersects hard-surfaced Bombing Range Rd. and we assumed it continued on a fire road directly across it. Five miles later we finally decided we were wrong and turned back for a fresh start. As we discovered, the route goes left on Bombing Range Rd, then turns right on Old Buncombe Rd (at the church). About 50 yards beyond that turn (just beyond the house) a signpost on the left side of the road marks the continuation of the dirt trail. In other words, the route contains about 0.8 mile of hard surface road near its beginning with the yellow blazes on power line poles rather than on trees beside the road. The confusion ends there because the trail is well marked with signposts and yellow tree blazes spaced only about 50 yards apart.

    The rest of the ride was clear sailing but quite slow (5.4 MPH average), mainly due to the number of trees and large limbs lying across the trail along with the fact that a thick carpet of leaves hid the trail from view. Also hidden beneath the leaves were rocks, roots, snags and the occasional stump hole to keep us awake. A number of climbs that were too steep to ride also slowed us down a bit. Those who prefer to bomb along clean, manicured trails will hate PT but those who enjoy going primitive as all mountain bikers used to have to do will enjoy the entire experience.

    The three major waters crossings are bridged and the smaller ones that are not are only three to four inches deep and quite narrow. The computer on my bike checked out quite closely with the mileage points shown on the maps so you can believe the map when it says close to 25 miles total for a there-and-back on section 3 . Maps of the three sections are available here.
    http://www.palmettoconservation.org/...reewebmap3.pdf
    http://www.palmettoconservation.org/...reewebmap2.pdf
    http://www.palmettoconservation.org/...reewebmap1.pdf

    As you turn into Sedalia Campground, pay parking is to the left but free parking is in the large open field just behind the information sign. Trailhead sign is at the backside of that field. Water and very nice toilets are there.


    The trail is adequately marked with signs and yellow blazes.


    Like I said before-----


    Johns Creek Lake is the first of four lakes you will see


    If not for yellow blazes every 50 yards or so the trail would be extremely difficult to follow. Section 1 is about 50/50 single track and fire roads


    The fire roads are a bit overgrown in places but considerably faster than the single track


    All major streams are bridged. This one across Johns Creek was made totally of some type of synthetic material that had the appearance of fiberglass. Very nice!


    This boardwalk at about the 8-mile point on the trail is about 300 feet long and extends across a marshy area to the foot of a steel bridge spanning the Enoree River.


    The Enoree River bridge is quite impressive and considering its location, was probably incredibly expensive to build


    Another shot of the ER bridge


    There are a few climbs


    All in all, a very peaceful ride through some very nice country
    Last edited by stumpbumper; 01-09-2011 at 01:51 PM.

  2. #2
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    Thanks for the info!

    Nice ride report & great pics! I've ridden a couple of passages of the PT but have not yet ridden the Enoree Passage. Hopefully, that will no longer be the case in due time

  3. #3
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    Thanks for posting these pics, looks like some of the best riding in SC.

  4. #4
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    it's ashamed i couldn't go. It definitely looks like the small trip to get over there. Thank you esp for letting us know about your trouble with the directions out there.

  5. #5
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    Thanks for the writeup, pics, and links StumpBumper. Looks like my kind of trail (any excuse to ride slow). Anyone ridden the coastal end of it? I've thought about trying some of that from Myrtle Beach, but just haven't done it yet.

  6. #6
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    The multi-use designation of the of the PT is a sham. No horse could cross those bridges and mtbs aren't allowed on the sections around Table Rock State Park or the unmentionable sections around 178.The section at TR was closed because of potential damage that bikes and horses might have on trout waters.Never mind that a horse and bike legal fireroad parallels the trail and goes through the streams that the bridges of the PT cross.For the millions of dollars of grant money and donations that have been put into a trail designed to IMBA specs there should be more trail on the ground and it should be open to all.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smells Like Fish
    The multi-use designation of the of the PT is a sham. No horse could cross those bridges and mtbs aren't allowed on the sections around Table Rock State Park or the unmentionable sections around 178.The section at TR was closed because of potential damage that bikes and horses might have on trout waters.Never mind that a horse and bike legal fireroad parallels the trail and goes through the streams that the bridges of the PT cross.For the millions of dollars of grant money and donations that have been put into a trail designed to IMBA specs there should be more trail on the ground and it should be open to all.
    Croft and one section of Enoree are the only passages I have ridden so I am no expert on the Palmetto Trail. I only know what I have read about the entire system. If sections around Table Rock are the only parts of the entire 300-400 miles to be closed to MTBs, I don't see that as a bad deal, except perhaps for those who live in that area. For all I know, MTBs may be banned on other sections as well but if they are my guess is they are relatively short. I do know that we are allowed to ride on the Croft, Enoree and Swamp Fox passages and they total around 90 miles.

    Not being a horse person I cannot address that issue, but I do know that a major part of section 1 of the Enoree passage is open to horses.

    I am glad to hear that you enjoyed my ride report.

  8. #8
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    It was a swell ride report about a swell trail and good pictures to boot. But if the trail is built to be multi use and is sold to the public as multi use then it should be multi use.I am glad you have 90 miles of quality trail to ride.That the sections from Tryon to west of Jocassee are closed to bikes and horses, is a crying shame.No it's like taking the whip cream,chocolate and cherry off an ice cream sundae.A 300 to 400 mile multi use mt to sea trail sundae.Just hold the mts.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smells Like Fish
    It was a swell ride report about a swell trail and good pictures to boot. But if the trail is built to be multi use and is sold to the public as multi use then it should be multi use.I am glad you have 90 miles of quality trail to ride.That the sections from Tryon to west of Jocassee are closed to bikes and horses, is a crying shame.No it's like taking the whip cream,chocolate and cherry off an ice cream sundae.A 300 to 400 mile multi use mt to sea trail sundae.Just hold the mts.
    I think you need to give credit where credit is due and blame that on DNR. My understanding is that the trail in that area was built as a multiuse trail on DNR land with DNR blessing, but using Palmetto Trail money, then DNR changed their minds about who could use it. DNR got a free trail and most everyone else got screwed.
    When the going gets weird its bedtime.

  10. #10
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    Smells Like Fish, your points are well taken. I can understand limitations being placed on MTBs on short sections of the trail but not on major portions of it.

    In some cases some interest groups have more clout than others. Horse people at Croft Natural Area near Spartanburg have a very strong voice and for that reason much of the trail system within the park is for horses and hikers only. We have the Croft passage of the PT as well as Southside there but the rest is off limits to us.

    It could be that hikers or trout fishermen or environmentalists or a combination of those have a lot of influence in the areas you speak of.

    EDIT: Oops, I posted the above before seeing Wooglin's post. Sounds like DNR is who we need to work on..
    Last edited by stumpbumper; 01-10-2011 at 12:52 PM.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by stumpbumper
    When completed, The Palmetto Trail will consist of 425 miles of multiple-use trails running across South Carolina from the North Carolina border to the Atlantic ocean---see this website http://www.palmettoconservation.org/maps.asp The trail is being built in phases called “passages” with close to 300 miles now open. Yesterday we rode section 3 of the Enoree passage mainly because we had never done it but also to check it out for a possible bikepacking trip later in the year. At 35.8 miles which consists of three sections of approximately 12 miles each, Enoree is the second longest passage (Swamp Fox in Francis Marion Nat Forest is longest at 47 miles). We rode section 3 which begins at Sedalia Campground near Cross Anchor.

    We found the beginning of the trail to be a bit confusing. A short distance from the campground the trail intersects hard-surfaced Bombing Range Rd. and we assumed it continued on a fire road directly across it. Five miles later we finally decided we were wrong and turned back for a fresh start. As we discovered, the route goes left on Bombing Range Rd, then turns right on Old Buncombe Rd (at the church). About 50 yards beyond that turn (just beyond the house) a signpost on the left side of the road marks the continuation of the dirt trail. In other words, the route contains about 0.8 mile of hard surface road near its beginning with the yellow blazes on power line poles rather than on trees beside the road. The confusion ends there because the trail is well marked with signposts and yellow tree blazes spaced only about 50 yards apart.

    The rest of the ride was clear sailing but quite slow (5.4 MPH average), mainly due to the number of trees and large limbs lying across the trail along with the fact that a thick carpet of leaves hid the trail from view. Also hidden beneath the leaves were rocks, roots, snags and the occasional stump hole to keep us awake. A number of climbs that were too steep to ride also slowed us down a bit. Those who prefer to bomb along clean, manicured trails will hate PT but those who enjoy going primitive as all mountain bikers used to have to do will enjoy the entire experience.

    The three major waters crossings are bridged and the smaller ones that are not are only three to four inches deep and quite narrow. The computer on my bike checked out quite closely with the mileage points shown on the maps so you can believe the map when it says close to 25 miles total for a there-and-back on section 3 . Maps of the three sections are available here.
    http://www.palmettoconservation.org/...reewebmap3.pdf
    http://www.palmettoconservation.org/...reewebmap2.pdf
    http://www.palmettoconservation.org/...reewebmap1.pdf

    As you turn into Sedalia Campground, pay parking is to the left but free parking is in the large open field just behind the information sign. Trailhead sign is at the backside of that field. Water and very nice toilets are there.


    The trail is adequately marked with signs and yellow blazes.


    Like I said before-----


    Johns Creek Lake is the first of four lakes you will see


    If not for yellow blazes every 50 yards or so the trail would be extremely difficult to follow. Section 1 is about 50/50 single track and fire roads


    The fire roads are a bit overgrown in places but considerably faster than the single track


    All major streams are bridged. This one across Johns Creek was made totally of some type of synthetic material that had the appearance of fiberglass. Very nice!


    This boardwalk at about the 8-mile point on the trail is about 300 feet long and extends across a marshy area to the foot of a steel bridge spanning the Enoree River.


    The Enoree River bridge is quite impressive and considering its location, was probably incredibly expensive to build


    Another shot of the ER bridge


    There are a few climbs


    All in all, a very peaceful ride through some very nice country
    Nice pics & ride report!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by stumpbumper
    When completed, The Palmetto Trail will consist of 425 miles of multiple-use trails running across South Carolina from the North Carolina border to the Atlantic ocean---see this website http://www.palmettoconservation.org/maps.asp The trail is being built in phases called “passages” with close to 300 miles now open. Yesterday we rode section 3 of the Enoree passage mainly because we had never done it but also to check it out for a possible bikepacking trip later in the year. At 35.8 miles which consists of three sections of approximately 12 miles each, Enoree is the second longest passage (Swamp Fox in Francis Marion Nat Forest is longest at 47 miles). We rode section 3 which begins at Sedalia Campground near Cross Anchor.

    We found the beginning of the trail to be a bit confusing. A short distance from the campground the trail intersects hard-surfaced Bombing Range Rd. and we assumed it continued on a fire road directly across it. Five miles later we finally decided we were wrong and turned back for a fresh start. As we discovered, the route goes left on Bombing Range Rd, then turns right on Old Buncombe Rd (at the church). About 50 yards beyond that turn (just beyond the house) a signpost on the left side of the road marks the continuation of the dirt trail. In other words, the route contains about 0.8 mile of hard surface road near its beginning with the yellow blazes on power line poles rather than on trees beside the road. The confusion ends there because the trail is well marked with signposts and yellow tree blazes spaced only about 50 yards apart.

    The rest of the ride was clear sailing but quite slow (5.4 MPH average), mainly due to the number of trees and large limbs lying across the trail along with the fact that a thick carpet of leaves hid the trail from view. Also hidden beneath the leaves were rocks, roots, snags and the occasional stump hole to keep us awake. A number of climbs that were too steep to ride also slowed us down a bit. Those who prefer to bomb along clean, manicured trails will hate PT but those who enjoy going primitive as all mountain bikers used to have to do will enjoy the entire experience.

    The three major waters crossings are bridged and the smaller ones that are not are only three to four inches deep and quite narrow. The computer on my bike checked out quite closely with the mileage points shown on the maps so you can believe the map when it says close to 25 miles total for a there-and-back on section 3 . Maps of the three sections are available here.
    http://www.palmettoconservation.org/...reewebmap3.pdf
    http://www.palmettoconservation.org/...reewebmap2.pdf
    http://www.palmettoconservation.org/...reewebmap1.pdf

    As you turn into Sedalia Campground, pay parking is to the left but free parking is in the large open field just behind the information sign. Trailhead sign is at the backside of that field. Water and very nice toilets are there.


    The trail is adequately marked with signs and yellow blazes.


    Like I said before-----


    Johns Creek Lake is the first of four lakes you will see


    If not for yellow blazes every 50 yards or so the trail would be extremely difficult to follow. Section 1 is about 50/50 single track and fire roads


    The fire roads are a bit overgrown in places but considerably faster than the single track


    All major streams are bridged. This one across Johns Creek was made totally of some type of synthetic material that had the appearance of fiberglass. Very nice!


    This boardwalk at about the 8-mile point on the trail is about 300 feet long and extends across a marshy area to the foot of a steel bridge spanning the Enoree River.


    The Enoree River bridge is quite impressive and considering its location, was probably incredibly expensive to build


    Another shot of the ER bridge


    There are a few climbs


    All in all, a very peaceful ride through some very nice country

    Smells like fish - if your gonna hi-jack this thread and cry about trail usage a least quote the pictures so everybody will have too scroll down and wear out there mouse.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by stumpbumper
    When completed, The Palmetto Trail will consist of 425 miles of multiple-use trails running across South Carolina from the North Carolina border to the Atlantic ocean---see this website http://www.palmettoconservation.org/maps.asp The trail is being built in phases called “passages” with close to 300 miles now open. Yesterday we rode section 3 of the Enoree passage mainly because we had never done it but also to check it out for a possible bikepacking trip later in the year. At 35.8 miles which consists of three sections of approximately 12 miles each, Enoree is the second longest passage (Swamp Fox in Francis Marion Nat Forest is longest at 47 miles). We rode section 3 which begins at Sedalia Campground near Cross Anchor.

    We found the beginning of the trail to be a bit confusing. A short distance from the campground the trail intersects hard-surfaced Bombing Range Rd. and we assumed it continued on a fire road directly across it. Five miles later we finally decided we were wrong and turned back for a fresh start. As we discovered, the route goes left on Bombing Range Rd, then turns right on Old Buncombe Rd (at the church). About 50 yards beyond that turn (just beyond the house) a signpost on the left side of the road marks the continuation of the dirt trail. In other words, the route contains about 0.8 mile of hard surface road near its beginning with the yellow blazes on power line poles rather than on trees beside the road. The confusion ends there because the trail is well marked with signposts and yellow tree blazes spaced only about 50 yards apart.

    The rest of the ride was clear sailing but quite slow (5.4 MPH average), mainly due to the number of trees and large limbs lying across the trail along with the fact that a thick carpet of leaves hid the trail from view. Also hidden beneath the leaves were rocks, roots, snags and the occasional stump hole to keep us awake. A number of climbs that were too steep to ride also slowed us down a bit. Those who prefer to bomb along clean, manicured trails will hate PT but those who enjoy going primitive as all mountain bikers used to have to do will enjoy the entire experience.

    The three major waters crossings are bridged and the smaller ones that are not are only three to four inches deep and quite narrow. The computer on my bike checked out quite closely with the mileage points shown on the maps so you can believe the map when it says close to 25 miles total for a there-and-back on section 3 . Maps of the three sections are available here.
    http://www.palmettoconservation.org/...reewebmap3.pdf
    http://www.palmettoconservation.org/...reewebmap2.pdf
    http://www.palmettoconservation.org/...reewebmap1.pdf

    As you turn into Sedalia Campground, pay parking is to the left but free parking is in the large open field just behind the information sign. Trailhead sign is at the backside of that field. Water and very nice toilets are there.


    The trail is adequately marked with signs and yellow blazes.


    Like I said before-----


    Johns Creek Lake is the first of four lakes you will see


    If not for yellow blazes every 50 yards or so the trail would be extremely difficult to follow. Section 1 is about 50/50 single track and fire roads


    The fire roads are a bit overgrown in places but considerably faster than the single track


    All major streams are bridged. This one across Johns Creek was made totally of some type of synthetic material that had the appearance of fiberglass. Very nice!


    This boardwalk at about the 8-mile point on the trail is about 300 feet long and extends across a marshy area to the foot of a steel bridge spanning the Enoree River.


    The Enoree River bridge is quite impressive and considering its location, was probably incredibly expensive to build


    Another shot of the ER bridge


    There are a few climbs


    All in all, a very peaceful ride through some very nice country

    Oh and we rode around the PT and Croft state park yesterday, great weather we got in about 20 miles and only saw 3-4 other bikes and no horse's.No pics though

  14. #14
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    Coud we see those pics one more time?
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  15. #15
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    Please don't encourage motoprofane to continue his hijack for if he does my friends Igor, Lurch and Vinnie will be paying him a visit.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by stumpbumper
    Please don't encourage motoprofane to continue his hijack for if he does my friends Igor, Lurch and Vinnie will be paying him a visit.
    where is the facepalm emoticon when you need it?

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by stumpbumper
    Please don't encourage motoprofane to continue his hijack for if he does my friends Igor, Lurch and Vinnie will be paying him a visit.
    I'll pay you a visit, I'll probably be back down there the 29th or 30, we'll ride and take more pics and then triple post-em

  18. #18
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    I decided to go down there today and try it out. Would it kill somebody to put up a sign? After making the left at the first road described by the OP and the right at the 2nd, I never saw another indication of where the PT was supposed to be. After riding back and forth on a 2 mile stretch of road for 30 minutes looking for a sign, I decided to turn into a forest service road to John's Creek Lake. Finally I came across a blaze and got back on the PT. If you go down there, I highly recommend parking at this lake rather than the campground. All you miss is about 50' of trail and a mile of road.

    The trail itself varies from really fun to so deep with leaves that you can barely pedal. I think this would be a great trail if more people rode it and got it packed down a bit. As it is, the trail is bascially no different from the rest of the woods, except that there is yellow paint on the tree. It is very easy to get off the track. All is needs is about 10 guys with leaf blowers.

    I plan to go back sometime and try to do the whole thing end to end. That will be a fairly epic day.
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  19. #19
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    I agree with everything you say. As I mentioned at the beginning of my ride report on Section 3, we had 5 miles on our bike computers from the Sedalia campground and still did not know which way to go. We had to return to the campground to figure it all out and I also posted that info above.

    Prior to riding Section 3, I spoke with one of the officials with USDA Forest Service in Union and she said considering the amount of money that had been spent on the trail, she was disappointed that more MTBrs did not use it. When I told her we planned to eventually ride all three sections, she asked me to please get back to her with opinions and suggestions. I plan to do just that and better directions from the various campgrounds is one of them.

    Today we rode Section 2 and about a mile of the southern end of Section 3, starting at the Brickhouse Rec Area, to the Enoree River and back to Brickhouse (about 26 miles). After leaving the parking area there was no sign or blaze to tell us which way to go once we got to HWY 66. Naturally, we turned in the wrong direction (sound familiar?). Three miles later we were back on the trail. Hundreds of limbs and trees down across the trail, some small enough to bunny-hop but many large enough to require a dismount and climb over made for a rather grueling ride. The worst place was just after we crossed Whitmire Hwy. All those blowdowns are there because they don't crank up the chainsays and ATVs until spring. Trail management obviously does not realize that many MTBers ride year-round and that's another point I intend to include in my report. I intend to also suggest an annual leaf-blowing.

    Considering the amount of money they spent on bridges, it is a real pity that they don't do more to maintain the trail. My guess is they really don't undestand what we MTBers want and need. They will know after I file my report. The Enoree Passage of The Palmetto Trail could rank right up there with FATS as a MTBng destination in South Carolina and in some ways it could be even better. Hopefully they will listen and react in a positive way. Let me know if you have any other suggestions and I'll pass them on.

    I shot quite a few pictures today and will post them along with a ride report when I have the time.

    I am not sure I understand which section you rode today, or where you started from.

    Cheers,

    stumpbumper
    Last edited by stumpbumper; 02-12-2011 at 06:27 PM.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by stumpbumper
    I am not sure I understand which section you rode today, or where you started from.
    Started at Sedalia Campgroup - northern terminus of the PTEP. By the time I found the trail, it was about 1. I just rode an hour out and and hour back. Probably no more than about 5 miles each way.
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  21. #21
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    You obviously did not notice in the ride report I filed at the very beginning of this thread that we also found the directions from Sedalia confusing and rode five miles in the wrong direction.

    In that report I also went on to explain in detail the turns to take from Sedalia to avoid the problem (second paragraph).

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