The Columbia area has a surprising number of trails and outdoor walkways to explore if you know where to look. Friends of ours mentioned the Timmerman Trail, and we had so much fun the first time we visited, we decided to do it again.
How to Find Timmerman Trail
In Cayce, off the 12th street extension, right near the Dominion Energy headquarters, is the trailhead for the Timmerman Trail. If you take interstate 77 to exit 2, which is SC 35, you are almost there. The second stoplight (the first is SaxeGotha Dr) is SCANA parkway. That’s the light you want to turn left at, and you should see a sign for the Timmerman Trail. There is ample parking, and a good bit of grass to play in off to the side.
The other trailhead starts just east of the Cayce Tennis and Fitness Center at the 12,000 Year History Trailhead where street parking and Cayce Tennis and Fitness Center parking are free. The address for the Cayce Tennis and Fitness Center is 1120 Fort Congaree Trail, Cayce, SC 29033.
What You Can Expect
This trail is great – the loop we do takes about two hours at my kids’ paces and is about 3.5 miles. It’s paved concrete or boardwalk all the way so it’s very stroller friendly. There’s an awesome bridge, lots of nature and water to look at, and best of all, it wears my kids OUT. (My kids are 6, 4, and almost 3.)
My 6-year-old could have, and has, walked the whole way. So can my 4-year-old, but the morning we went they were low on fuel, and did chill in the stroller. My youngest walked maybe half the way, and fell asleep on my back in a carrier on the loop back to the parking lot. If they hadn’t all woken up super early, they probably all would have easily walked the whole trail.
Do’s and Don’ts for the Timmerman Trail
DO take water and snacks – you’ll be out awhile and kids will be hungry and thirsty.
DON’T forget to use the bathroom before you leave the house. There are no restrooms available. Plenty of trees . . . but no bathrooms.
DON’T let really young children bring bikes and scooters. While it is paved and designated as a bicycle path, there are parts with long, curvy hills, which are a real challenge going both up and down on wheels. You, the parent, will likely end up lugging equipment up and down the hills, and who wants to do that? You know your child’s skill level and ability best, so judge accordingly.
DO take your camera, or phone with a camera. Even in the middle of winter, with nothing in bloom, there are some really beautiful natural elements. The picture below is of the Congaree Creek.
DON’T be afraid to bring your dog. We saw quite a few leashed, friendly canines on the trail.
DO take your time and explore. There’s a lot to see and so many learning opportunities. My 4-year-old swears she saw an alligator. Or maybe a crocodile. Really it was just dead log in the water, but still – it’s a place ripe for the imagination!
Overall, it’s a great place to get out and experience the outdoors. If you’re looking for a new experience to add to your list, I’d definitely recommend checking out Timmerman Trail. It provides lots of fun, exploration, and alleviates the “I’m bored!” that can often fill your home when your kids are wanting something different than a traditional day at the homestead.