Some of Georgia's most spectacular hikes are within an hour or two of Atlanta. Get out and explore the state's stunning scenery at a few of Alta Dairies’ favorite spots. Lace up those hiking shoes, pull up the trail map on your phone, and hit the trail.
Arabia Mountain Top Trail
Less than 20 miles east of Alta Dairies is the Arabia Mountain Top Trail, a short but stunning 1.3-mile round-trip hike that takes you to the mountain’s peak and treats you to views of granite outcroppings, towering trees, and mesmerizing lakes along the way. It’s hard to believe that such natural beauty is tucked away so close to the big city. Looking for a little more of a workout? Check out the Arabia Mountain National Heritage Area site for maps of the more than 30 miles of trails that grace the area.
Sawnee Mountain Indian Seats Trail
For sweeping views of the jaw-dropping North Georgia mountains, head north to the Sawnee Mountain Indian Seats Trail. Less than an hour from Alta Dairies, this 4-mile hike offers close-up views of Sawnee Mountain and glimpses of the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains in the distance.
Sweetwater Creek State Park
Just over 20 miles west of Alta Dairies, Sweetwater Creek State Park features an assortment of views – rushing whitewater, gushing waterfalls, and historic textile mill ruins. With a variety of trails to choose from, this gem just outside the city is a haven for hiking and trail running.
East Palisades Trail
A short 14 miles northwest of Alta Dairies, the East Palisades Trail is a 4-mile round-tripper along the Chattahoochee River’s Palisades section. A bamboo forest and old stone bridge are a few of the highlights of this scenic excursion.
Kennesaw Mountain Loop
Looking for a big-time workout with a big-time payoff? Head to Marietta and brave the Kennesaw Mountain Loop. About 25 miles northwest of Alta Dairies, this 9.8-mile loop gains 1,355 feet in elevation en route to Kennesaw’s 1,786-foot-high summit. As you slog toward the peak, you’ll pass old cannons dating back to the Civil War era and plaques detailing the region’s storied history. Once atop Kennesaw Mountain, enjoy sweeping views of the gorgeous north-central Georgia landscape.
Going Really Big? Try the Appalachian Trail.
The southernmost point of the Appalachian Trail is just a couple of hours north of Atlanta at Springer Mountain, where a bronze plaque at the summit greets hikers beginning or ending their Appalachian adventure – whether they’re traveling the famed trail’s full 2,193 miles or a smaller section of it.
This is one journey you won’t want to tackle on a whim, though. Thru-hikers often spend months training and planning – and then five to seven months of hiking on top of that. The Appalachian Trail covers 14 states, and its northernmost point is Mount Katahdin in Maine. If you think you have what it takes for this beastly hike, check out the Appalachian Trail Conservancy site and get the full scoop.
More of a day hiker? No worries! Take a trip up Springer Mountain instead. The views atop the nearly 3,800-foot peak are gorgeous – and there are a variety of trails to take you there.
Looking for more fun things to do in and around your Alta Dairies home? Visit our blog for more ideas.