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Bartram Trail to Sandy Ford

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Sumter National Forest

Bartram Trail to Sandy Ford is a 18.2 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Mountain Rest, South Carolina that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until December. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 18.2 miles Elevation Gain: 2,368 feet Route Type: Out & Back

dogs on leash

backpacking

camping

hiking

nature trips

running

forest

river

waterfall

rocky

hiking
blowdown
bugs
over grown
6 days ago

hiking
bugs
muddy
1 month ago

Plenty of places to fill up water. Some camping areas in the first few miles, then a lot of rhododendron forest. A few areas where hammocks could camp but not right by water. And then around 6.5/7 miles you have a couple of disperse sites right by the river, there’s one hidden you gotta take a trail off to the right by the first clearing near the river.

backpacking
blowdown
muddy
1 month ago

This is my first true backpacking experience, meaning the "campsite" is simply an available flat piece of land without any amenities. Thankfully, I carried a tarp with me and used it as a "table" for laying out my gear and cooking my meals. Otherwise, I'd have a muddy stove, muddy water filter, etc. Overall, the trail is nice. You get to hear the beautiful rush of the river from time to time and peer through openings at a truly beautiful river. Luckily for me, I found a spot near the river (near Earl Ford Road, before you cross the long, steel bridge) that was also just 100 feet from an excellent water source (a mini-waterfall). The trail was muddy in the beginning and there are a few blowdowns. One of the bridges has an eroded gap between the bridge and the path so you'll have to be careful there. Thankfully, someone taped pink flagging to highlight this danger. I'll definitely hike this trail again.

backpacking
1 month ago

Very well maintained trail, accurately listed as a moderate trek. Climbs and descents on the trail are smooth, and would be a breeze with a day pack. There are a couple of campsites within 3 miles of the trailhead, but if you keep moving until mile 6.5 you’ll find additional spots along the river. Small parking area is located on the opposite side of the road from the trail head. Trail is mostly marked very clearly with yellow blazes. There was an intersection with the horse trail that tripped us up about 5 miles in, but we were able to get back on the pedestrian trail using this app. Trail is pretty clean. There were some down trees and a good bit of poison oak and ivy along the way. Would definitely come back with friends that are new to backpacking and are looking to get some experience. If you’re looking for good vistas or big water features, maybe check another spot further north!

hiking
7 months ago

This was fun to hike and to camp at. Nothing strenuous and there are campsites next to the river with access. Very peaceful and serene. I would definitely recommend this trail to someone not looking for anything crazy but still a long hike in nature with a few dope spots to camp. I filmed my hike also feel free to check out the video on YouTube! Digital Dark Age Studios https://youtu.be/xvabwv-fQ50

hiking
8 months ago

First time walking parts of the trail. From highway 28 I was very impressed that the trail was well maintained. The bridge over the west fork needs a bit more work, some boards needs to be replaced. There were a couple of good campsites and had very good grades. Very well marked with yellow blazes.

backpacking
Wed Jul 11 2018

First things - We did not hike the entire trail. We only hiked to Earl's Ford (it was my daughters first backpacking trip and we wanted to keep it light. I guess I was just hoping for more highlights. We thought a lunch at Earls Ford would be nice - play in the water and then work our way back... Earls Ford is beautiful and would be a perfect picnic spot, except for the car campers and ORV folks. Lots of trash and trucks. The trail isn't used much by hikers - we saw 1 hiker over the past 2 days. The campsites are large, but nothing too exceptional, and they seem to be spaced out ever 3 miles or so. There were a few sections with lots of horse traffic (although marked as hikers only), and the spiders are plentiful.

hiking
Wed Oct 03 2012

Liked this hike. Saw about 4 waterfalls and a couple campsites. This hike was pretty much secluded. We ran into only 2 groups of hikers.

hiking
1 month ago

hiking
2 months ago

recorded Bartram Trail to Sandy Ford

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
2 months ago

hiking
3 months ago

hiking
Fri Apr 05 2019

hiking
Thu Apr 04 2019