Issaqueena Falls located north of the city of Walhalla in Oconee County

I have been doing some light renovation work at the cottage and yesterday decided it was time to take a break. A contractor, who had been helping me, backed into my new mailbox and left it begging to be moved and relocated to some place not so vulnerable. Since moving in, I have seen it get hit three times. Yesterday was the fourth. So it was time to dig another hole and move it. The problem at that point was not where to put it but how to dig it up. We discovered that it had been “rebarred” into the ground.

As we surveyed the damage, the contractor drew a deep breath and said in his best southern drawl, “I’ll be back in a bit,” I thought, I’ll be back in a bit too. I grabbed my camera and headed to South Carolina. Ten miles into my trip I was met by a sky full of fierce-looking storm clouds, but I pressed on and traveled up Highway 107 to reach two beautiful waterfalls. The first one is called Issaqueena, which is located near the city of Walhalla in Oconee County’s Stumphouse Tunnel Park.

As with many of the falls in this area, there is a legend. The most popular story tells how as a girl Issaqueena was captured by the Cherokee and given the name Cateechee. “As a young woman she met and fell in love with a white trader named Allan Francis. One day she overheard a plan by the Cherokee to attack the settlements on the frontier. To warn Allan, she found a swift pony and rode 96 miles to his trading fort. While she traveled, Issaqueena named the landmarks she passed—Six Mile Mountain, Twelve Mile River, Eighteen Mile Creek, and others on her way to her final decision at Fort Ninety-Six.

“Fearing retribution from the Cherokees, Issaqueena remained with Allan, eventually marrying him. In time, she, Allan, and their newborn baby moved back to Stumphouse Mountain where they built there home. Then one day, the Cherokee Chief, angered with the white settlers, sent his warriors to capture Issaqueena. Issaqueena saw them coming and ran toward this waterfall to escape capture.

“Knowing that the Cherokee believed evil spirits lived in the waterfalls, she pretended to leap to her death. She hid on the ledge below the top of the waterfall where she remained until it was safe to rejoin her family. Her dramatic escape began the legend of Issaqueena Falls.” (see Southern Highroads Web site)

Whitewater Falls located off Highway 107 eleven miles south of Cashiers, NC

This set of falls is really nice. We had to hike down to observation decks, which usually means using a different group of muscles in your legs and being a little sore the next day.