Paris Mountain Fire Tower (or not) hike

June 12, 2017

TL;DR The Paris Mountain fire tower trail does not have a fire tower at the top.  It was moved like 50 years ago.  

As most of you know, I'm living in Greenville, SC until Christmas as I do my first co-op rotations at Advanced Automation.  I've been exploring the parks around the area, and last week I went to Paris Mountain for the first time.   It was after another day at work where I sat at the computer for most of the day, so I wanted to walk/hike/move for a pretty long time.

I looked at the trail map (above) and decided on the longest trail in the park, Sulphur Springs Trail, at 3.6 miles.  In the middle of the loop it connects with Fire Tower Trail, and I decided to do that as well.  

 

The hike starts off pretty flat, and eventually you go up hill a little bit, and then probably less than 0.5 miles into the hike you come across a gorgeous pond/lake created by a dam in the middle of the forest! There is a large dropoff from the water on one side.  My pictures don't really do it justice. 

Shortly after the lake, the trail becomes a lot steeper.  There's a little water crossing an miniature waterfall somewhere on the steep part, which is a great place to take a break.  

 Hike hike hike... Eventually I found the sign for the Fire Tower Trail.  I hike on it for a good 10 minutes, and eventually I see a little brick chimney and the ruined foundation for a house.  I'm thinking "Great! Now where's the fire tower?"  

There's a small sign near the house ruins, and it has some history, and this little tidbit of information:

 

There is no fire tower.

 

It was moved in 1968 to a different mountain.  (To the top of the actual Paris Mountain, less than a mile away, but not connected to the area that Paris Mountain State Park is at.)

 "Is this a fire tower?  How about over here?  NO."

 

 Here, I'll be my own fire tower.  Yay.

 

You could say I was a little bit disappointed.  

 

But the lighting was cool so I took a few smiling selfies

On the hike back down I walked with a random stranger that was on the trail going the same way.  She used to work as a park ranger at Paris Mountain, so she had a lot of cool knowledge about the park.  I don't remember her name, but what's new.  

 

Anyways, that was my Paris Mountain trip, thanks for reading.  I'm pretty sure very few people will ever read all the stuff I'm putting on my website, which kinda saddens me, but it's entertaining me at work writing all this stuff so I guess it isn't a total loss.   

 

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February 11, 2018

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Jacob Thompson

jat5@clemson.edu

Clemson, SC

© 2020 By Jacob Thompson

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