hiking

hiking
5 months ago

i completed the duncan ridge trail from wolfpen gap to slaughter gap then connected with the AT up to blood mountain. the trail is brutally steep for the climb to 4000 feet then levels off as it passes over an unnamed knob and the north slope of slaughter mountain. after that the trail was overgrown and narrow for the descent to slaughter gap. i met a young trail runner there who came up the coosa trail. we proceeded to the AT and finally blood mountain. it was sunny and warm on the summit rocks so i did not stay long. the return trip was tough and i recommend hiking poles. i enjoyed the remote silence of the duncan ridge trail as opposed to the crowd that one invariably encounters on blood mountain. total distance was 6.88 miles in 4.2 hours.

trail running
7 months ago

First time I ran it, I got lost. Today I ran it with the new application. No problems whatsoever. I ran it counterclockwise. Ran the loop which was about 4.5 miles according to my Garmin watch. Mile one is at Shope gap trail. Mile two is at forest service road. Mile three is reentry into the woods off of the forest service road. That entrance back on the trail is easy to miss. Last mile and one half of the trail is the most pristine, undisturbed, and holy. Some of the fastest downhill I have ever run my entire trail running career. 1/2 mile into the trail this morning I had the distinct privilege of seeing a mother bear and her two cubs. They were 50 yards away and down a steep slope. Just glad I did not run directly into them. The second half of this trail makes it completely worthwhile.

trail running
7 months ago

Got lost. Good waterfalls.

hiking
7 months ago

My daughter, her dog, and I did part of this trail in late March 2015, and then completed it in early April 2016. In 2015, we started at Neels Gap and hiked the AT over Blood Mtn. to the start of the Duncan Ridge Trail (DRT), and then followed the DRT past its intersection with the Benton MacKaye Trail (BMT), ending at the parking area near the Taccoa River suspension bridge. In 2016, we resumed our hike at the Taccoa River suspension bridge and followed the DRT to its terminus at the AT at Long Creek Falls.

The section of the DRT between the AT at Blood Mtn. and the intersection with the BMT was very tough. The trail went straight and down the peaks, with few switchbacks. Water was also a concern, as the information on this trail is almost non-existent. However, there were some springs in the gaps we passed through, and the rough side "trails" to these were noted on the DRT by blue diamond shape signs with "W" on them. The side trails themselves were usually marked with blue survey flagging. So water was available. But the uncertainty of where the next water would be was the biggest concern. But we did OK. On the section we did in 2015, we averaged only about 7 miles per day over a 4 day period.

The section between the intersection with the BMT and the terminus at the AT was a lot easier and we were able to make much better time. There was one spring not far from the intersection with the BMT, and then water at the trail crossings of the Little Skeenah Creek (GA Hwy 60) and the Taccoa River. But not anything in between. There was no water between the Taccoa River and Long Creek.

There are very few hikers using this trail, so if one enjoys remoteness and a challenge, this is the trail for you. That is why I am rating it as a "4". But while I am glad I did this trail, I doubt I will do it again!

hiking
9 months ago

This area is really out of the way but has a nice "official" camping area and some "unofficial" sites around it that are even better. The rail system is actually 5 trails totaling just over 8 miles. This site is only talking about the yellow mountain trail, which truthfully, is the only trail really worth the effort.

Yellow Mountain: Nice out and back or as part of a loop. 3.2 miles one way crossing a really nice large stream about 2.7 miles in. There is a great camping spot there. It is a nice climb up to the top of, I suppose, yellow mountain, then down across the stream and out to a FS road. Turn around and go same way for an out and back of 6.4 miles. I did this in the early spring/late winter with the leaves down and it was nice. I think with the leaves up, though, there will be no views and it will be pretty unremarkable.

Take the first right on the way back for the ,6 mi Shope Gap, which takes you to Mill Shoals, which you can take for 2.4 miles back to within about 100 yards of where you went in on yellow mountain trail. Instead of 6.4 out and back you have about a 7.5mi loop. Hope Gap is boring, and the first mile of Mill Shoals is along a FS road, so boring. Pay attention on the left for a pretty well hidden trail sign to get off the road. It is easy to miss. The rest of Mill Shoals is interesting for the first half mile into the woods with some really nice stream crossings, but forgettable beyond that, especially considering the road hike.

Take the second right back onto Cooper Creek trail for .4 and catch Mill Shoals in for about a 6 mile loop. The only advantage is you don't have to see the same scenery twice, and you get a few more steps in.

ThereIs another Cooper Creek, which is a loop off of the parking area by the main river. It is 1.6 miles and is an OK walk in the woods if you are staying there. Don't make the trip for it.

All in all, if you want an out of the way camping area with some nice day hikes, this wouldn't be a bad place. Beyond Yellow Mountain, though, you aren't getting much, especially considering the top notch trails nearby with the AT, AT connectors, and Brasstown Bald area. But, a day in the woods is always a nice day and my lab loved it for sure.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/JasonHikingPage/

This area is really out of the way but has a nice "official" camping area and some "unofficial" sites around it that are even better. The rail system is actually 5 trails totaling just over 8 miles. This site is only talking about the yellow mountain trail, which truthfully, is the only trail really worth the effort.

Yellow Mountain: Nice out and back or as part of a loop. 3.2 miles one way crossing a really nice large stream about 2.7 miles in. There is a great camping spot there. It is a nice climb up to the top of, I suppose, yellow mountain, then down across the stream and out to a FS road. Turn around and go same way for an out and back of 6.4 miles. I did this in the early spring/late winter with the leaves down and it was nice. I think with the leaves up, though, there will be no views and it will be pretty unremarkable.

Take the first right on the way back for the ,6 mi Shope Gap, which takes you to Mill Shoals, which you can take for 2.4 miles back to within about 100 yards of where you went in on yellow mountain trail. Instead of 6.4 out and back you have about a 7.5mi loop. Hope Gap is boring, and the first mile of Mill Shoals is along a FS road, so boring. Pay attention on the left for a pretty well hidden trail sign to get off the road. It is easy to miss. The rest of Mill Shoals is interesting for the first half mile into the woods with some really nice stream crossings, but forgettable beyond that, especially considering the road hike.

Take the second right back onto Cooper Creek trail for .4 and catch Mill Shoals in for about a 6 mile loop. The only advantage is you don't have to see the same scenery twice, and you get a few more steps in.

ThereIs another Cooper Creek, which is a loop off of the parking area by the main river. It is 1.6 miles and is an OK walk in the woods if you are staying there. Don't make the trip for it.

All in all, if you want an out of the way camping area with some nice day hikes, this wouldn't be a bad place. Beyond Yellow Mountain, though, you aren't getting much, especially considering the top notch trails nearby with the AT, AT connectors, and Brasstown Bald area. But, a day in the woods is always a nice day and my lab loved it for sure.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/JasonHikingPage/

This trail is an easy hike. Two thirds of the walk is on a clear pathway, with only a short wooded trail having roots and uneven ground. Gorgeous scenery; a mountain lake with the rays of sunrise burning through the mist and fog coming off the water will make for an inspiring morning. After a full day hiking, canoeing, or fishing settle down beside the fire and enjoy one of their many campsites. This park has other trails to offer as well so don't limit yourself to the short lake loop. Hike Jarrard Gap about a mile or so and you will converge with the Appalachian trail and have miles of hiking available. Bring the kids , I am certain the young children will have a blast at the playground or beach area.

camping
2 years ago

Loved this campground! Took our daughter camping here for the first time. To start off an amazing trip, on the highway coming up here from Dahlonega we saw a black bear!!! First time seeing one in Georgia, so super exciting. Also exciting that we got to see him safe and sound from the inside of our vehicle since we had a 1 year old with us :) Lots of deer around too.

The campground itself is pretty basic - older bathrooms, one shower stall, hot water, and not much else in the way of amenities. Nice ranger selling firewood and checking in from time to time. Each site is drive-up and has a small tent pad, really only big enough for one tent, plus firepit and grill in one, picnic table, and lantern hook. Road is paved, no need for 4x4. The campsites are set back away from the lake itself, so you have to walk a few minutes to get to the water.

GREAT fishing here - husband already planning to come back alone to hit up the trout and bass. Super clear water, you could see some 12"ers swimming around in the cover around the shore edge. Nice easy .5 mile trail around the edge of the lake, comfortable enough to do with a child. If you are into hiking, this is a great place to camp - right behind the campsites is a connection to the Jarrard Gap Trail and Slaughter Creek Trail, which will connect you to the main Appalachian Trail. Looking forward to coming back in the spring and giving those trails a shot when it is just the adults.

What a beautiful place. One of the prettiest mountain lakes in Georgia. It is usually quiet and a drip in the lake will cool you off in summer. The trail is gentle and quiet offering beautiful views all the way around the lake.

hiking
4 years ago

Trail is primarily ups and downs like a roller coaster. Few water sources during dry seasons.