The Palmetto Trail is South Carolina's cross-state trail, one of only 16 trails in the country that traverse an entire state from end to end. Though still disjunct in other parts of the state, when completed the Palmetto Trail will cover 500 miles from the mountains of the Upstate to the coast of the Lowcountry. It's easternmost portion is the Awendaw Passage, which is 7.1 miles in the vicinity of US-17 and the Intracoastal Waterway. The trailhead at Buck Hall Recreation Area marks either the start or the end of the full journey, depending on direction of travel.
The Awendaw Passage is forested for nearly its entire length, traveling through maritime forest, pinewoods, and alongside coastal marsh. The terrain is basically at sea level and flat, with some footbridges over sloughs and guts. Large sections may flood or become deep mud after heavy rain. Warm months mean lots of mosquitoes and other insects, so plan accordingly.
There are multiple access points along the Awendaw Passage, which crosses roads a few times, including Highway 17. This allows various options for a shuttle if you are not continuing on to Swamp Fox, the next passage of the trail. There are no campsites or facilities along Awendaw Passage, except for the developed campground at Buck Hall Recreation Area. Parking at the recreation area requires a $5 day use fee, and camping is an additional fee. Parking at other trailheads along the passage is free.
The Palmetto Trail is maintained by the nonprofit Palmetto Conservation, which is committed to finish linking the trail. They rely on donations and volunteer work for this and other conservation projects across the state.