Calhoun Falls State Park is one of those out-of-the-way recreational areas that quickly becomes a favorite with outdoor enthusiasts. Set on a peninsula overlooking Lake Russell, this quiet, 318-acre retreat offers camping, kayaking, boating, swimming, hiking and some of the best fishing in the state for bass, bream, catfish and crappie.
A 300-foot buffer around the Savannah River-fed reservoir creates a peaceful natural setting to paddle, fish or just tool around on a motorboat. Later this week, I'll tell you about my experience kayaking on the lake.
Along with the reservoir, the park is known for its scenic and well-designed campgrounds. All three are located in the woods along the shore of the lake, offering campers a beautiful spot to sleep outdoors.
The designated walk-in camping area includes tent pads, centralized water and convenient access to restrooms with hot showers. All but one of the 14 sites are on the water.
While open to tent campers, the other two campgrounds are especially popular with RVers because they offer easy entrance and egress. Some of the sites are able to accommodate RVs up to 40 feet.
The designated tent sites are $14 to $16 a night; those with water and electrical hookups run from $19 to $21 a night. If you're making a reservation at least two days in advance, you can call (866) 345-7275 or book it online by clicking here. Last-minute campers will need to call the park office at (864) 447-8267.
Another big selling point is the lighted 36-slip marina. The affordably priced slips are rented on a yearly basis and include access to sewage pump-out, in-boat refueling and restrooms with hot showers. The park also features a boat ramp for day use.
Anglers who prefer to fish from land can cast from the shore or one of two fishing piers. Forgot your gear? No worries. Fishing tackle is available through the park's loaner program at the park store.
Calhoun Falls State Park also features basketball and tennis courts, several playgrounds, a swimming beach, picnic shelters and a moderately difficult 1.7-mile nature trail.
Want to learn more about the park? Click here.