Whether you are a beginner hiker, hiking with a family, or an experience explorer, Gilmer County has trails to meet your needs.
In September 2012, Ellijay-Gilmer County was designated an Appalachian Trail Community.
For detailed information and directions on any of our local Hiking Trails we recommend you print the Hiking Trails Guide (pdf) or contact:
North Georgia Mountain Outfitters
14244 Highway 515 N. Suite 1200
Ellijay, GA 30536
Stay Active Ellijay
1215 Industrial Blvd
East Ellijay, GA 30540
Trails Out 52 East:
Cartecay River Loop: 3.75miles, moderate.
Springer Mountain: The Appalachian Trail (AT) extends from Springer Mountain 2,179 miles north to Maine. The Benton MacKaye Trail (BMT) also originates at Spring Mountain and extends 288 miles to Davenport Gap on the North end of the Smokies. The southern terminus of each of these trails is 1.6 miles south of the trail (across the road). A nice 5 mile loop, moderate, is possible using these two trails.
Benton MacKaye Trail Association
344 Hwy 515
Blue Ridge, GA 30513
Three Forks: From the parking area to the left (North) the trail is Long Creek Falls (2.3 miles round trip), moderate.
Amicalola Falls State Park:
Hikers can enjoy more than eight miles of trails from easy to strenuous including the 604 steps to the top of the falls. Amicalola Falls State Park also is the location of the Approach Trail to the 2,160 mile Appalachian Trail.
Trails Out 52 West:
Bear Creek Trail: 1.5 (or more) miles, easy. This scenic hike follows Bear Creek to the Gennett Poplar, the state record Tulip Poplar.
Cohutta Southern Trail Access Points:
Over 30 miles of trails ranging from moderate to strenuous.
- Conasauga River Trail
- East Cowpen Trail
- Panther Creek Trail
- Hickory Creek Trail
- Tearbritches Trail
- Mountaintown Creek Trail
- Songbird Trail
Fort Mountain State Park:
A short footpath leads to the Cool Springs Overlook with a view of the Cohutta Wilderness area. The Big Rock Nature Trail (.7 mile) follows the stream which flows from the lake. The Old Fort Trail (1.8 miles) leads to the rock wall, stone tower and overlooks, and the Lake Loop Trail (1.2 miles) surrounds the lake. The 8.2 mile Gahuti Trail offers four overnight camping areas.
Carters Lake Hiking Trails:
- Amadahy Trail, easy to moderate, 3.5 mile loop. Located at the Woodring Branch Recreation Area off Hwy 282/76. Amadahy Trail offers great lake views and two small streams are found along the trail.
- Big Acorn Nature Trail, easy, 2/3 mile round trip. Begins at the Carters Lake Visitor Center and winds gently uphill from a cove of the lake and ends at the lake-view overlook.
- Talking Rock Nature Trail, moderate, 2 miles round trip. This trail involves 20 sites of interest, including interpretive signs. It is located just beyond the entrance of Northbank Park.
- Oak Ridge Nature Trail, moderate. The trail splits at .2 miles into either a loop or a one-way trail, each measuring about 1/2 mile. Located at the Woodring Branch Recreation Area off Hwy 282/76.
- Tumbling Waters Nature Trail, easy to moderate. Located in Ridgeway Park, this trail offers a hike featuring lush mountain vegetation and an overlook of cascading waters of Tails Creek.
- Hidden Pond Songbird Trail, easy, 1 mile loop. This trail begins at the Carters Lake South Regulation Park.
For more information on the Carters Lake Trail visit http://www.sam.usace.army.mil/Missions/Civil-Works/Recreation/Carters-Lake/Parks/ or call 706-334-2248.
Trout Adventure Trail
The Trout Adventure Trail is a “do it yourself” and “plan your own” hiking and learning experience for kids of all ages along legendary trails in the Chattahoochee National Forest in north Georgia. It offers individual hikers, families and organized groups the opportunity to hike, learn and earn a free decorative commemorative patch as recognition of the commitment to outdoor education, conservation and accomplishment.
More information visit www.troutadventuretrail.org