Long Shoals will forever be one of my favorite spots to enjoy the outdoors. Who needs to assemble a store bought slip ‘n slide in their backyard when there’s a natural (free) one less than an hour from Greenville?
We first discovered this park when JP was about four years old and it’s a must-see!
We stayed until the boys asked to leave. I think we were there for a few hours. Eventually, they were so exhausted, they couldn’t walk up the hill anymore. Side note: it’s after 9 am and they’re just now starting to stir. I’d say that’s a WIN.
There are a few things you should know before you go:
- Sunscreen – This sounds like a no brainer, but a lot of times when we travel to the mountains, I don’t think of sunscreen. You DO NOT want to leave it behind. There is very little shade.
- Bug spray – You are in the middle of a mountain so bug spray is a good idea! Preferably one that works for ticks because you’re surrounded by trees.
- Bathrooms – There is one portable bathroom (eww, gross) at the top of the steps and that’s it. Obviously, it’s not a problem for the little boys in the group! Thankfully, Long Shoals is a short distance from Aunt Sues which has very clean, very cute bathrooms. We stopped on the way in and were fine.
- Shoes – If you’re able to wear water shoes or anything other than flip flops (I wore TEVA sandals), you’ll be better off. To get to the slide, you walk down a pretty steep hill. The steps do not carry you all the way down. Some of our crew wore flops and ended up having to take them off.
- Water – Remember you’re swimming in mountain water – it’s FREEZING! I made sure our kids wore swim shirts, which seemed to help.
- Floats – A lot of families brought tubes. You definitely can, it’ll make you go a lot faster but our boys had fun without them.
- Food – Longs Shoals is a great spot for a picnic. We carried our small cooler with drinks and snacks. Carry plenty of water. The kids don’t get hot because of the water, so I had to remind them to drink. As you pull into the parking lot, you’ll see a picnic area to the right, but I noticed it was not well kept. In my opinion, you’re better off eating on your towel or blanket once you get to the water.
Remember, what you take down the hill has to come back up!
I hope you guys have as much fun as we did. HAPPY WEDNESDAY!