Points of Interest Surrounding the Clemson Experimental Forest

 Map of Points of Interest on the Clemson Experimental Forest pdf

Clemson University Outdoor Lab: The Clemson University Outdoor Laboratory is located five miles from the university campus on a beautiful peninsula on Lake Hartwell. In the midst of the 17,000 acre Clemson forest located only 45 minutes west of Greenville, SC, the Outdoor Laboratory provides meeting and programming possibilities that can be found in few environments. Excellent accommodations for conferences, workshops, retreats and other programs are available

SC Botanical Gardens: The South Carolina Botanical Garden, located on the Clemson University campus, is a diverse 295-acre garden of natural and manicured landscapes within the South Carolina Piedmont ecosystem. Together with a nationally recognized nature-based sculpture collection, distinguished youth education and outreach programs, and a Geology Museum, the SCBG is a premier site for experiencing nature and culture.


 Recreation Opportunities in Clemson Experimenal Forest

The CEF Trail System: The Clemson Experimental Forest Trail system is divided into three primary areas: Fants Grove (approx. 40 miles), Issaqueena (approx. 47 miles) and Todds Creek (Approx 18 miles). None of this trail system is managed exclusively for public recreation use. The trails are a component of a working forest used for teaching, research and extension education for natural resource management. The trail system allows for the study and improvement in construction design and maintenance of recreational use. It also allows for the evaluation of user attitudes and study of the impacts of recreation on the ecosystem. No University or State allocated funds are used to manage the CEF. The primary source of funds for operation and maintenance of the CEF is from timber sales under our sustained yield management program. Individuals may contribute to the CEF through The Clemson University Foundation account # 5500755 “CEF Maintenance Fund” for support of activities including bicycle, hiking and horse trails, scout projects and facility maintenance. You may also contribute to the Clemson University Foundation Account # 5500500 “Equestrian Trails Initiative”, for support of equestrian trails.

*Before you use the Clemson Experimental Forest for any of the mentioned recreation purposes please read the rules listed under each section as well as the following rules for general use of the CEF.


Camping is not allowed on the Clemson Experimental Forest. Click here to find convenient camp sites along Lake Hartwell.



Hunter shoots at quail in the Clemson forest



Mountain Biking:

Two mountain bikers enjoy trails in the Clemson Forest
Fishermen enjoy fishing from the bank inside Clemson forest


  • Visit the SCDNR website for information on fishing
  • Click here for the list of Fish species present within the Clemson Experimental Forest property boundaries
  • Fishing is allowed in Lake Issaqueena, Lake Hartwell and in the streams and rivers of the CEF property. Fishing is NOT allowed in research farm ponds.


The CEF has a number of picnic spots/shelters where you could picnic. Be sure to read the rules and regulations at the top of this page

Picnic table inside the Clemson forest
birdwatchers search for birds in the canopy of Clemson forest

Bird Watching:

  • Click here for the bird species list for the Clemson Experimental Forest
  • Read about Christmas Bird Count in the Clemson Experimental Forest and surrounding area

Horseback Riding

Horse back riders enjoy the trails of Fant's Grove