Hiking Table Rock With Kids

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Table Rock State Park is one of our area’s premier hiking destinations. Offering beautiful waterfalls, swimming holes, and trails from the leisure to the strenuous, all nestled in an incredible mountain forest setting. At just 30 miles from downtown Greenville, this park would make a great day trip for your next family adventure. Today local mom Jackie Vest, shares the scoop on enjoying this park with kids in tow.

This park is new to the free incentive program to get kids exploring the outdoors! Learn all about it in our review of the Kids in Parks Program

Table Rock hiking with kids

What to expect at Table Rock

There are many wonderful trails at Table Rock State Park in Pickens, SC. Located right off Highway 11, if you’re coming from Greenville, you’ll likely spot the giant rock looming as you approach the park that the park derives its name from. From trails to swimming holes, this park is rightly one of the most popular in the state.

Especially during peak seasons of late spring, summer, and early fall, you’ll need to plan to get to the park early in the morning to get a parking spot. If you’ve got a SC State Park All Park Passport, your entire carload gets in free.

Trails

Of the many offerings, the park boasts, my favorite trail for hiking with little ones has to be the Carrick Creek Trail. Beginning at the Nature Center, this trail starts out paved and immediately opens up to the beautiful Carrick Creek Falls where your kiddos can wade around in a cool, shallow lagoon fed by a cascading waterfall. In fact, it will be difficult to not stop right there! If you decide to press on, I usually bribe entice my children with a romp in the lagoon after the hike.

Beyond that, the pavement ends and the trail becomes a bit more moderate as it follows the creek for a while and then loops around back to the falls for a grand total of two miles. You and your kids will enjoy traveling alongside the creek as the rushing water drops over boulders and slides along ledges, creating an amazing backdrop for a hike! There are countless places to stop and play or even enjoy a picnic.

Eventually, the trail diverges from the creek and continues through the woods as it loops back to start. Some even prefer to just turn around and follow the creek back. Whatever you decide, prepare to slip your feet into the cool mountain water and enjoy the scenery. I have completed this trail with a troop of five little ones ranging from ages six to two and fun was had by everyone.

More Challenging Trails

If two miles on a moderate trail doesn’t seem like enough adventure for your crew, there are plenty of other longer and more difficult trails to choose from with overlooks and waterfalls to seek. Namely, the Pinnacle Mountain Trail which leads to Mill Creek Falls and Bald Rock Overlook.

The Table Rock Trail is one of the most strenuous trails in the Upstate. It’s around seven miles round trip and involves a lot of stairs and steep treks up rock hewn steps. You’ll definitely be catching your breath on this trail but it’s an incredible view once you reach the top. The park says it will take you around five to seven hours total. Be sure to bring a lot of water, especially over the summer, and an abundance of snacks if you’re bringing kids. Kids can definitely do this (I’ve seen plenty of kids on this trail). Just take your time and plan to start early in the day so you’re off the trail by dusk.

The Beach

Table Rock SP also has a small beach with plenty of sand. You can also rent boats to paddle around the lake for a fee. Entrance to the lake is included in your entrance fee.

There is an admission charge to enter the park, which you can find updated on the park’s website. If you have an All Park Passport, there is no admission charge.

Plan your own trip to Table Rock

158 Ellison Lane
Pickens, SC 29671

Visit the Table Rock website here.

Does Table Rock sound like a great place to take your kids’ hiking?

RELATED:  Best Hiking Trails in Greenville |  Tubing with Kids |  Camping Around Greenville: Davidson River Campground

About the Author
Jackie Vest is a writer and at-home-mom of two energetic little boys. She enjoys adventuring around the beautiful Upstate, the hilarity of kiddo-raising, outdoor fitness with friends, and her Favorite 5 C’s: cooking, crafting, camping, coffee, and chocolate. You can connect with her via her blog at: JackieVest.com.

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4 years ago

Thanks for sharing your experiences with your little ones at Table Rock! There’s no better playground, and truly something for every age and skill level at this beautiful State Park.

Jenni
3 years ago

I love your newsletters! Thank you all for your time and energy. It takes A LOT to run a site and newsletter. Most importantly, thank you for sharing this information so that other families can enjoy these wonderful opportunities as well. You are all great! ❤️

Admin
3 years ago
Reply to  Jenni

You are so kind. Thank you!