The picturesque beauty and terrain of Northwest Georgia lends itself to hiking experiences ranging from easy to difficult, but never disappointing! Choose a mountain hike, a state park adventure, or a semi-urban trail, and plan your weekend hiking adventure today. As with any outdoor activity, be sure to take water and scope out the level of difficulty ahead of time if possible. Leave no trace and leave it inviting for the next hiker. Have fun!
Eagles Rest Park on Mt. Oglethorpe
The thrill of the outdoors, the beauty of nature and the serenity of being unplugged…that’s what you will experience at Eagles Rest. There are three trails with varying degrees of difficulty. Visit the website for a trail map, directions and some history of the area.
Don’t let the 350 miles of trail keep you from stepping foot on this adventure! The trail actually spans two states with 135 of those miles in Northwest Georgia. Multiple access points allow for a short or long hike in various terrains. The foothills of the Appalachians provide a mountain experience year ‘round from the green of spring, the lush of summer, the colors of fall and the vistas of winter. Thanks to the hard work of others, there are multiple websites and guides to assist your visit.
An unexpected find in Northwest Georgia! Hiking and horse trails wind through 940+ acres near Waleska. The 19.7 miles of trail are marked for easy navigation. The trailhead includes restrooms, pavilion, playground and picnic shelters.
Benton MacKaye Trail
These legendary long trails begin on Springer Mountain near Ellijay and Blue Ridge. Everything you imagine about a beautiful mountain hike is found on these trails. The city of Blue Ridge has been designated as the first Benton MacKaye Trail Town. Be sure to stop by their welcome center for maps and information. And while you are there, find out about the Aska Trails and Trails in the Cohuttas. And go ahead and plan your next visit because you WILL be back!
This wildlife management area provides opportunities for hiking, caving, rock climbing and other adventures. Be sure to check out ROCK TOWN, and unusual outcropping of rocks, and THE POCKET, best known for the Shirley Miller Wildflower Trail, a half-mile trail featuring a boardwalk, waterfall and nearly 50 varies of wildflowers, best visited in spring when the wildflowers are blooming.
George Disney Trail
Named from the grave of George Disney located on the trail atop Rocky Face Ridge, this trail is noted as being one of the most challenging short trails in the state of Georgia. The trail offers breathtaking views of Whitfield and surrounding counties and is blazed with reflective white markers.
Pine Log Creek Trail
There is lots to discover on this 4.5 mile trail with East and West loops. The moderate to difficult hike takes you over seven footbridges crossing Pine Log Creek to two overlooks with views of Pine Log Mountain, one of the highest elevations in the county’s Appalachian Foothills and site of the Pine Log Cherokee Indian Village.
GEORGIA STATE PARKS
Trails abound at these state parks, each with its own unique history and scenery.
Cloudland Canyon State Park
Located on the western edge of Lookout Mountain, Cloudland Canyon is one of the largest and most scenic parks in the state. Home to thousand-foot deep canyons, sandstone cliffs, wild caves, waterfalls, cascading creeks, dense woodland and abundant wildlife, the park offers ample outdoor recreation. There are 64 miles of trails, but the most popular hiking paths include the short Overlook Trail, strenuous Waterfalls Trail and moderate West Rim Loop Trail.
Fort Mountain State Park
A scenic drive on Highway 52 near the Cohutta Wilderness leads visitors to this mountain getaway with 25+ miles of hiking trails where visitors will find some of the most beautiful trails in Georgia, winding through hardwood forest and blueberry thickets, crossing streams and circling a pretty lake. Hikers can also explore a stone fire tower built by the Civilian Conservation Corps and an ancient rock wall which stand on the highest point of the mountain. The mysterious 855-foot-long wall is thought to have been built by early Indians as fortification against more hostile Indians or for ancient ceremonies. The Big Rock Nature Trail is one of many trails hidden within Fort Mountain State Park traveling the ridgeline near the lake. It goes downhill into the mountain hallow, crosses a dividing ridge, then passes several small cascades and beautiful waterfalls before passing through Gold Mine creek. This is the perfect spring-time trail for viewing blooming wildflowers. The Emery Creek Trail features twin waterfalls that follow the path of two mountain streams. The lower trailhead crosses Holly Creek, and goes along the banks of Emery Creek, until reaching your destination to a Grassy Mountain campground.
Red Top Mountain State Park
While best known for the 12,000 acre lake, Red Top Mountain is also a hiker’s haven. More than 15 miles of trails wind through the forested park, providing opportunities for exercise and nature photography. A short, paved trail behind the park office is suitable for wheelchairs and strollers, welcoming guests to explore a reconstructed 1860s homestead. The gravel-topped 4 mile Iron Hill Trail is open to both hikers and bikers, offering pretty views of the lake’s shoreline.
Pickett’s Mill Battlefield State Historic Site
Pickett’s Mill is one of the best preserved Civil War battlefields in the nation with 4 miles of hiking trails. Visitors can travel roads used by Federal and Confederate troops, see earthworks constructed by these men, and walk through the same ravine where hundreds died. An authentic 1800s pioneer cabin is furnished and open for tours during certain events.
Silver Comet Trail
The Silver Comet Trail is located 13 miles northwest of Atlanta, Georgia. It’s free of charge, and travels west through Cobb, Paulding, and Polk counties. This quiet, non-motorized, paved trail is for walkers, hikers, bicyclists, rollerbladers, horses, dog walkers, and is wheelchair accessible
The Paulding County section of the Silver Comet travels through Hiram, behind the Paulding Chamber of Commerce in Dallas, through remote areas in the Paulding Wildlife Management Area, and heads west near Braswell to the Polk County line.
Elsie Holmes Nature Park
Two miles of walking trails through a hardwood forest and wooded creek bottom land features wildflowers, plants, and trees marked with sign to identify the specific species. There is also a trail on the ridge that is accessible for strollers and those with disabilities. Additional amenities make this park a great place to plan a family picnic or just to relax and enjoy the day.
Berry College Trails
Who would have thought a college campus would be a hikers destination, but Berry College in Georgia’s Rome is just that! The Viking Trail, a 3-mile paved travel for walkers, runners, cyclists and rollerbladers, is one of the most popular of the Berry Trails, but see the entire list HERE to find the one that suits your fancy. https://www.berry.edu/community/_assets/HikingRunning.pdf
Bremen Tanner Health Walk
For a slower, yet healthy pace, set out on the 1-mile walking tour in the city of Bremen. Learn about the textile and railroad heritage of the city while enjoying the fresh air and sunshine.
This site of the 1855 grist mill sits along the banks of the Coahulla Creek. Walking paths along the creek offer visitors an easy walk in nature where the flora and fauna of the area grow. It’s a perfect place for a family gathering or for finding spots of solitude for reflection. Pets are welcomed on a leash.
As the largest paved loop trail system in the state of Georgia, the Carrollton Greenbelt will keep you coming back for more. Whether you walk (or bike) all 18 miles of the trail in one undertaking, each section holds a different view or activity. Perfect for families with small children! Click on the video to get a 6 minute overview or visit the website to download a trail map to begin planning your visit.
There are many more trails to hike and explore in Northwest Georgia…too many to list here. Contact the Northwest Georgia Travel Association to request more information.