Table Rock State Park spreads out a fabulous assortment of treats this time of year. It just might be the nicest place in South Carolina to enjoy Mother Nature's finest flowers, foliage, and views.
The park sits 16 miles northeast of Pickens on State 11, a scenic two-lane stretching through the Upcountry. You can spot the cliff faces of the 3,124-foot mountain and its partner, 3,225-foot Pinnacle Mountain, rising above the treetops from miles away.
Things get even prettier as you approach the entrance, when you see the peak of Table Rock reflected in Pinnacle Lake at its base. There's no grander view of spring.
Once you've arrived, there are several things you can do, including fishing, canoeing, paddleboating, and hiking. "We have 10 miles of hiking trails and offer guided trail walks throughout the year," says park manager Poll Knowland. "One trail leads to the top of Table Rock, which has a spectacular view." You can also opt for a horseback ride with our good buddy Tony Ellison at the nearby Table Rock Equestrian Center. Tony will take you on a half-day trail ride past flowering dogwoods and up to a panoramic view ($110 for a half-day ride, including a packed lunch;  878-2896).