The first I visited was in the fall, the day before Thanksgiving. I took my mother and we didn’t go far, her being on a walker, but we both enjoyed it and I vowed to return. My return trip coincided with the blooming of the Rocky Shoals Spider Lilies bloom in spring. Not knowing exactly what they looked like, it was a real treat to see all those white flowers on top of the green stalks sitting in bunches in the river. There’s a special viewing area for the flowers, a deck where one can lean against the rail and take them in visually. Bring binoculars to get a close look and a long telephoto lens for good photos.
There are two entrances to the park, but I prefer Entrance Area #1. It’s closer to the viewing area and a nice beginning to the Canal Trail. There’s a museum and a log house. The museum is open by appointment only so call if you wish to see it. At the log cabin you can rest awhile and relax after the walk.
There are four trails. I combined the Canal trail (1.25 mile one way) with the Lily Viewing Area path (.75 mile) and the Nature trail (.5 mile). The Eagle Point trail is a quarter of a mile hike one way and begins at the end of the museum. Come to think of it, I walked that one too that day.
Before you head out, take the trail map. It explains nicely what is what and about the canal.
Landsford Canal park stretches along the Catawba River. With this area located on the fall line, a series of canals was built so that boats could bypass the rough waters. This canal was the furthest upstream. The canal stayed open from around 1820 to 1835. The ruins of the canal remain along with a few other structures.
How to Get There:
From I77, take exit 65 and head east on SC9. Turn left on SC223 and take another left onto US21. In Landsford go right on Canal Road/Rd330 and left on RD327. There will be signs to the park.
What’s Close By: