Chasing the Swamp Rabbit

27 thoughts on “Chasing the Swamp Rabbit”

  1. I really enjoyed your photos and writing on this. I didn’t know about this trail and I think it is a place I’m going to have to try out. How long did you ride to get that amount of distance?

    It’s been a while since I’ve gone on a long ride, but I used to do day trips all the time.

  2. I started at about 9:30 am and finished up around 1:30. I used to do long day trips on my road bike, but I’m terribly out of shape. Plus, I now tend to stop and take pictures, which REALLY slows down a ride!

    Let me know if you’re interested. We could start in TR and leave a vehicle downtown and do a one-way trip.

  3. We walked this trail from TR all the way into downtown Greenville in the early Spring and had a blast doing it! It was great fun exploring the long-forgotten trail, imagining what it was like “back in the day,” and always being on the lookout for the sometimes-hidden trail ahead.The snaggle-toothed trestles/bridges were an exciting challenge, and at one point, we found ourselves “trapped” as we followed the trail through the parking lot of an old mill…we only got out by finding a hole in the chain link fence! Now we want to try to follow it the other way….any ideas?

  4. Kathy,

    Eric over at A Day’s Drive from Greenville posted his attempt on his blog:

    A Day's Drive from Greenville, SC: Swamp Rabbit Tram Trail

    It looks like he ran into the same problems you did. I know the plan is to connect downtown and TR with a paved path, but they are not quite there.

    You can start behind the Peace Center at the Linky Stone Park. This is underneath the Highway 123 (Academy Street) bridge. The trail is paved and goes about a mile and a half before it ends.

  5. Great photos and text! I’ve made the trip several times now, but never all the way to Greenville.

    Even when the temperature is in the high nineties the shaded trail is delightful and the grade much better than any of the street options. The only problems I have (other than the scary bridge) are the areas of LARGE gravel.

  6. Would love to know more of this trail…Have recently started riding a bike and would love to more of this trail…Since I am a beginner at 52 this month, would love to have somewhere to ride without all the highways like White Horse Rd. of which I live off Saluda Dam Rd….Where exactly does it start in TR?….And is there places I would have to walk?Lol…Do I need to pack a lunch?Would love to hear from you on this trail….TY very much for finding it.

  7. my grandfather and my dad were the engineers on the Swamp rabbit RR. I think there should have been more on the actual RR, but glad everyone can enjoy the trail. It use to carry timber from the saw mills and textiles all the way to Cleveland, SC. I use to ride the old steam engine with my dad, and even after they converted to diesel engines.
    chuck stowe
    I was called Charles when I grew up in Greenville

  8. I grew up in Marietta and now live in Greenville. I’m very excited to hear about this trail. Where in TR is the trailhead??? Thanks!

  9. This is great! I am working with the TR Historical Society. Please get in touch with me. We have a meeting at City Hall on May 19 at 7PM.

  10. The meeting of the TR Historical Society will be held at Northwest Middle School, tonight at 7. Hope that you will come.

  11. This trail will be the best once completed. Wonder if is wide enough for future masses?? Only place I’ve found unpaved is between Furman and back behind Amtrack. Haven’t noticed any constuction activity on this section as of late.

    1. It’s my understanding that the portion of the trail through the old W. R. Grace plant is awaiting demolition of the buildings before paving. Also, the section through the city of Travelers Rest is delayed until fall – something to do with getting city permits, etc. I think they are also negotiating rights to extend the trail northward.

  12. I read the message from Chuck Stowe above about the Swamp Rabbit. I am researching the Greenville and Northern Railway and would like to speak with Mr. Stowe. Do you still live in Greenville County?
    I talked with a retired Southern RR engineer yesterday who know hsi father and grandfather.


  13. The Rec Dept of Greenville doesn’t give very good information except that the trail is closed except for the downtown area and advises it is against the law to be on any other part of it until it is completed? From this post, it looks like everyone can go ahead and use it regardless of the advise. I’m there!

    1. Roger – Is there a link to the Rec Dept information? As many people as I have seen using the trail, I find it hard to believe that they would enforce anything about it being “against the law to use until completed.”

      That being said, there are some sections just past downtown that are not clearly marked. One could easily wind up trespassing if not careful.

  14. I remember seeing a GM turbo train on a siding somewhere in the area of this line in the mid 60’s. I’m glad to see you’re helping to preserve railroad history here. As one can tell by my E-Mail addess I’m a model railroader. Thanks ED

  15. I worked on the G&N from 1973 to 1979. Jake Stowe was the engineer and retired not long after I went to work there. Dwight Looper was the conductor. I was conductor and General Foreman when I left in 1979.

  16. I am the grandson of Dwight Looper. My grandfather worked for G&N railway from 1945 to 1982. I rode the #70,#75 and the #9 from Greenville to Travelers Rest many times.Those were great times with my papa.I have a lot of memories growing up around the railroad depot. I do not think the city of Greenville gives enough recognition to the railroads history and the people who worked there.

  17. Ican’t tell you how much I enjoyed this! We’ve been trying to remember the entire route and just couldn’t get past Furman. I hope to see more from you when you’ve had the oportunity to ride the NEW Swamp Rabbit Trail!
    Thanks for the great pictures as well!

  18. Just wanted to let everyone know that the entire trail from downtown Greenville to Traveler’s Rest opened on May 12th. The entire distance is 13 miles between the 2 trailheads.

  19. Hey Tom, Have you heard anymore info about paving the section at the W.R. Grace Plant?

    Great story and pics! My wife and I usually ride the trail every other day.

  20. I was wondering if anyone knows where I might be able to find photographs of the Greenville & Northern Railway, taken in either the 1950s or 1960s? I have seen lots of photos from the surrounding decades, but sadly very little from the 50s or 60s. Specifically, I am hoping to stumble across photos of two locomotives that operated on the G&N during these two decades, namely G&N #78 (the line’s only GE 44-tonner) and G&N #21 (a leased GE 70-tonner from the Montpelier & Barre in Vermont). Any help you can provide on this would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

  21. For Nate see my entry above. I operated the G&N 70 & 78 locomotives while I worked at the G&N during 73-79. We also had the #9 while I was there that was brought in from the home office in Vermount.

  22. Sad the line has become a rail trail. Shame it could not be saved or have some tourist line potential.

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