Aiken State Park
Jungle Nature Trail
Length: 3 miles not including spur trails
Type: Hiking Trail
Description: This is a level, easy-to-follow, 3-mile boardwalk and dirt turf loop through tropical-looking wetlands, and mixed pine and hardwood forest. You will walk through dense green rhododendron, and fern that provide habitat for iridescent dragonflies, and a variety of birds, snakes and other wildlife. At the far end of the main loop, you will see two clearly marked spur trails. Follow the short canoe launch spur trail across the park road, through a sandy oval parking area, to the dock on the tea-colored south fork of the Edisto River. (The water gets its unusual color from tree roots and leaf debris.) Near the dock, an artesian well bubbles up through a fountain. When you return to the main loop trail, you can also walk the other, slightly longer, spur trail to the fishing pond. Continuing on the main trail, avoid any unmarked spur trails, and you will return to the parking area. During the warm season insect repellent is recommended. Pets are permitted on leashes. Restrooms are available near the picnic area. Click here for more information.
South Fork Edisto River Trail
Length: 1.7 miles
Type: Canoe/Kayak Trail
Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Description: In Aiken State Park, the South Fork Edisto River meanders for an easy 1.7 miles between two canoe landings. It’s an opportunity to make a shorter excursion on a river that usually takes days. The surrounding land in Aiken State Park is a combination of river swamp and dry sandhills, with the latter area offering evidence of an era when the ocean pushed this far inland. The park is extremely popular among fisherman and campers because of the easy river access and four spring-fed lakes. But paddlers have the extra bonus of a cleared canoe path, giving people a chance to explore the South Fork’s narrow waters. In the state park, the river doesn’t have the width of the lower Main Stem. Instead, a tight channel delves through a canopy of trees for an unusual tunnel effect. Signs will guide you along the way.
Canoe experience is suggested. Click here for more information.
Find a link to the park map here.