About Yellow Branch Falls
Yellow Branch Falls seemed to be almost like a virtual twin to the nearby Issaqueena Falls.
After all, they both possessed similar “character” (as Julie likes to say), and they were similar in size where I believe Yellow Branch Falls is said to be 40-50ft or so with a width of about 75ft.
However, unlike Issaqueena Falls, we had to earn our visit to Yellow Branch Falls with a bit of a 3-mile out-and-back hike.
While we didn’t have to do any scrambling for the waterfall, we did have to spend a little over two hours at a leisurely pace (which included taking photos along the way).
Indeed, the hike was mostly gentle in terms of the net elevation loss from the trailhead to the falls.
Plus, the nice Fall colors decorating the tall trees surrounding the trail further kept us occupied throughout our time on the hike.
Julie and I did spot a snake during our hike, which attested to how naturesque the relatively quiet experience was.
Anyways, I counted around 3 or 4 stream crossings throughout the hike, but I don’t recall if any of them were bridged.
Overall, we found that hiking to this waterfall was very much like a back-to-Nature experience as it was just us and the tranquil surroundings.
Perhaps the only thing that disturbed the peace was the presence of loud gunshots echoing and piercing through the tranquility during our visit.
We suspect that it was probably due to hunting, but since we’re not familiar with the hunting laws in Upcountry South Carolina, we’re not sure how commonplace it is to be within earshot of hunting activity on this trail.
Like with Issaqueena Falls, we happend to see this waterfall with pretty low flow, and I’d imagine its best volume comes during the Spring or right after a storm.
That said, we had to cross the shallow stream one last time in front of the falls to get the full frontal views you see on this page, but the low flow made that crossing a piece of cake.
Yellow Branch Falls resides in the Sumter National Forest near Walhalla, South Carolina. It is administered by the USDA Forest Service. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, visit their website or Facebook page.
We happened to come to the trailhead for Yellow Branch Falls from Issaqueena Falls.
It was only a few minutes drive from there as we rejoined the SC28, then headed south (back towards Walhalla) for about a mile before turning right onto a short road leading to the car park for the Yellow Branch Picnic Area.
Similarly, if you’re coming up from Walhalla (the nearest town to Yellow Branch Falls), you can follow the same directions as that for Issaqueena Falls (we’ll punt you to that page for exact directions).
Except instead of driving north some 5.4 miles on SC28, you only have to go about 4.1 miles on it and look for the signposted “Yellow Branch Picnic Area” sign on your left.
For context, Walhalla was 26 miles (over 30-45 minutes drive) northeast of Toccoa, Georgia, 45 miles (an hour drive) west of Greenville, 93 miles (about 2 hours drive) south of Asheville, North Carolina, and 120 miles (about 2 hours drive) northeast of Atlanta, Georgia.
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