Of all the ways to see the Upcountry's most rugged and scenic spots, including the area surrounding Jocassee Gorges and the waterfalls of neighboring North Carolina, by horseback has to be one of the most memorable.
Lifelong horseman Rhett Leonard started his business, Horseback Waterfall Tours, less than a year ago, and since then, he’s created a hallmark experience for enjoying some of the most spectacular natural wonders of our region. Leonard is also the owner of Rockin’ Reverend Ranch in Pickens County’s Pumpkintown Community, located about 24 miles northwest of Greenville. The ranch, which is tucked in the shadow of Table Rock with all the stunning views that accompany that serendipitous locale, is home to a family of mares that is expertly suited to guide adventurers (novice to expert) through the 3-hour waterfall tour.
Leonard provides the horses, single-footing horses to be exact, which are known for their relaxed trail gait and natural ability for a smooth, consistent ride. Riders—up to four at a time—simply come along, where they can enjoy highlights ranging from waterfalls and streams to mountain vistas, lakes, wildlife, and even a covered bridge. Jumping Off Rock, the hallmark view of the Jocassee Gorges and Lake Jocassee, is one favored destination in Leonard’s portfolio. Table Rock is another.
He’s a bit protective about his exact routes—something along the lines of a trademarked secret in the world of outdoorsmen. But he promises an adventure that will not soon be forgotten, all located about an hour from Greenville.
“One of my clients, who was referred by the Red Horse Inn (in Landrum) recently commented, ‘We had an absolute blast with Rhett,’” Leonard offers. “The waterfalls were stunning, the weather was great, and the company was refreshing. It was an all-around wonderful time.”
By Heidi Coryell Williams for TOWN Greenville. Orginally appeared on May 30, 2012