The Jamestown section of the Santee River begins at the Highway 41 Bridge, about one and one half miles from the intersection of Highway 41 and US 17 Alternate. A suitable takeout would be McConnell’s Landing about 9 and one half miles downstream. It will be necessary to position a vehicle at McConnell’s Landing or to make arrangements for someone to pick you up at that location.
About the Trail
The Jamestown section of the Santee River is a pretty section of the river to paddle. Section widths range from about 50 yards to over 100 yards. It is mostly uninhabited and bordered by both high ground and occasional cypress swamps. Much of this section is bordered on the right side by the Francis Marion National Forest, where primitive camping is permitted. You will commonly see deer, wild turkey, bald eagles and numerous wading birds. Of particular interest on this trail is Battery Warren, a Confederate fort built to protect the railroad bridge at that location during the Civil War. Battery Warren sits on a high bluff on the right bank about one half of a mile beyond the mouth of Echaw Creek and one mile before reaching your takeout point at McConnell’s Landing. There are raised platforms overlooking the original Battery Warren site and placards describing the fort. It is recommended that you take a break at this site, appreciate the history, and enjoy incredible views of the river. A leisurely 30 minute paddle from Battery Warren will bring you to McConnell’s Landing on your right. It is a concrete ramp with plenty of parking and a cleared camping area adjacent to the landing.
While primitive camping is available in the Francis Marion National Forest, more traditional lodging options near the trail include the Arrow Head Motel & Campground and the Econo Lodge in St. Stephen.
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