The Congaree River is formed by the confluence of the Saluda River and the Broad River in downtown Columbia. It is a large and impressive river that offers a variety of paddling opportunities. As the Congaree makes its way past downtown Columbia, it descends the fall-line over shoals and small rapids. As the Congaree flows southeast out of sight of downtown, it begins to meander and takes the form of a large coastal plain river. Once you have passed Thomas Newman Landing in Cayce, there is not another access to the Congaree River for approximately 46 miles. The paddler will float past large sand bars, high river bluffs, and vast floodplains as they approach Congaree National Park. The Congaree River can be accessed from Congaree National Park via paddling down Cedar Creek. The Congaree River joins the Wateree River to form the Santee River. Soon after this confluence, the Santee River begins to flood as a result of backwater from Lake Moultrie.
A PDF map of the Congaree River Blue Trail is available through the National Park Service website, at the Harry Hampton Visitors Center at Congaree National Park, and at local outdoors and paddling retailers. Also, see the Congaree National Park website for more information on South Carolina's only National Park! More information about the Congaree River can be found here.
Featured trips for this waterway showing difficulty (circles) and current runnability status (squares). .