Park Trail Conditions
Recent storms left damage on all park trails. Portions of the elevated boardwalk are currently closed. The lower boardwalk is open. Expect downed trees and debris on all trails and in Cedar Creek. Be prepared when hiking and canoeing.
Frequently Asked Questions
What can I do if I have 2 hours to spend in the park?
We recommend walking the 2.4 mile Boardwalk Trail, with a free, self-guiding brochure provided at the Harry Hampton Visitor Center. There are wooden numbers on the boardwalk rails which coincide with numbers in the brochure, and explain to you some of the history and natural ecology of the park.
Is fishing allowed in the park?
Yes, fishing is allowed. You must possess a valid SC fishing license.
What is the difference between a National Park and a National Monument?
A national monument is intended to preserve at least one nationally significant resource, whereas a national park is usually larger and preserves a variety of nationally significant resources.
What is the difference between a floodplain and a swamp?
A floodplain is a low lying area near a river, covered by water periodically throughout the year. A swamp is permanently covered with water.
Where is the best place to see big trees?
Awe-inspiring big trees can be found along the Boardwalk Loop and throughout the trail system at Congaree National Park.
How tall are your trees?
The average canopy height is over 100ft tall. Congaree has one of the tallest temperate deciduous forests in the world, and is taller than the old-growth forests found in Japan, the Himalayas, Southern South America and all of Eastern Europe. The National Champion Loblolly Pine (found at Congaree) is 167 feet tall and almost 15 feet in circumference.
How can we identify poison ivy?
“Leaves of three, let it be” is good advice, although in winter the best way to identify it is by its hairy vine.
Can you use bikes on the trail(s)?
There are no designated bike trails at Congaree National Park.
Are dogs allowed on the trail(s)?
Dogs are allowed on all trails at Congaree National Park. They are required to be kept on a leash at all times. Please keep your dog with you at all times; do not leave your dog unattended in the park.
Does the park rent canoes or kayaks?
No. Canoes and kayaks can be rented through outfitters in Columbia.
Did You Know?
The Harry Hampton Visitor Center is the first national park visitor center built in partnership with Army and Air Force National Guard civil engineering units, the South Carolina Richland County Delegation, Richland County and Columbia’s River Alliance.