The Little Pee Dee is an outstanding example of a Coastal Plain blackwater river in South Carolina. Fourteen (14) miles of the lower Little Pee Dee River from Highway 378 to the confluence with the Great Pee Dee River were designated a State Scenic River in March of 1990 by the Legislature. The tea-colored water, cypress-tupelo swamps, lakes, white sand stream-bottoms and beaches characterize this river section.
Fishers pursue bluegill, largemouth bass, crappie, and catfish. The most popular fishing activity is for the redbreast sunfish in the spring. Recreational boating, in canoes and small power boats, is popular year round. Camping spots can be found on sand beaches and ridges along the river.
Other sections of the Little Pee Dee River system have been considered for State Scenic River designation. Immediately upstream of Highway 378, an additional 64-mile section of the Little Pee Dee River was determined eligible for scenic river status in 1997 but was never officially designated. Further upstream, the Little Pee Dee in Dillon County (a 48-mile section) was designated a Scenic River in 2005. In addition, there is the Great Pee Dee Scenic River, designated in 2002, which adjoins the lower Little Pee Dee and extends 70-miles from Highway 378 to Highway 17 at Winyah Bay.
The Department of Natural Resources has merged the management of two State Scenic Rivers, the lower Little Pee Dee and the Great Pee Dee, into one project with one functioning advisory council to assist and advise in the management of these two adjoining rivers. The combined advisory council is called the "Pee Dee Scenic River Advisory Council" and includes members representing river-bordering landowners, rivers users, and community interests associated with both scenic rivers. Go to the Great Pee Dee Scenic River page to find information about the advisory council members and their activities.
Recreational Access / Boat Landings
There are currently five public access points on the lower Little Pee Dee Scenic River.
- Pitts Landing: Two boat landings are located at the Highway 378 crossing on either side of the river, one in Marion County and one in Horry County called Pitts Landing.
- Sampson Landing: About four miles downstream on the Marion County side (river right) is Sampson Landing. The landing is off the river on Sampson Lake.
- Punchpole Landing: Eight miles below Highway 378 is Punchpole Landing (often labeled Punchbowl) located on the Horry County side (river left). Punchpole Landing is on a large sand deposit and the area just upstream provides beaches that are heavily used by the locals for sunning, swimming, and wading.
- Sanders and Parkers Landings: Two landings, Sanders and Parkers, are located on the east bank of Russ Creek which is off the Little Pee Dee on the Marion County side. From the Little Pee Dee these landings can be reached by entering either the upper end of Russ Creek or Jiles Creek and related sloughs on the west side of the river. These landings are about 10 or 11 river miles below Highway 378.
- Tan Yard Landing: Additional access points are located on the Great Pee Dee River. Tan Yard Landing can be reached by traveling about one mile upstream on the Great Pee Dee River. This landing is at the end of the road that accesses all the previously mentioned Marion County landings. Tan Yard Landing is about 15 river miles from Highway 378.
- Highway 701 bridge: Five miles downstream from the confluence with the Great Pee Dee is the Highway 701 bridge. A take out is located on the Horry County side (river left).
Little Pee Dee Scenic River Project
South Carolina Department of Natural Resources
P.O. Box 167
Columbia, SC 29202
Telephone: (803) 734-9096
Fax: (803) 734-9200