Jacks Knob Trail is a 9 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Hiawassee, GA that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.
Directions from Blairtstown: Take US 19 and 129 south from Blairsville for 8 miles. Turn left (east) onto Georgia 180. Go 8 miles and turn left (north) onto Georgia 180 Spur and follow it 3 miles to Brasstown Bald Visitor Center Parking Lot.
Pleasant, leisurely alternate route up Brasstown Bald to avoid the disappointing paved path. Standard fare for the region - beautiful wooded areas, views across state lines at mountains in both, wildflowers and everyday north Georgian fauna everywhere, relaxing and easy going.
This was an excellent hike. If you are looking for a more challenging hike up to the peak of brasstown bald other then the .6 mile paved path, then this is the one to do. We parked at the bottom of the main road entrance to brasstown bald and hiked up the well maintained and marked path all the way up to the parking lot at a little over 4.6 miles. Then we hiked to the top of the parking lot and up the paved path to the peak. Excellent views from the top, with multiple states seen in the distance.
completed jacks knob up to brasstown bald. it was a warm december day and i was in shorts and a tee shirt. the trail finally leveled off when i reached wolfpen ridge at about 2 miles. stopped for a drink at the top and noticed it was a lot colder so did not stay long. roots roots and more roots on the sometimes very steep trail down with lots of leaves and pine straw made it not so fun anymore. encountered 5 humans and no animals along the way. 5.76 miles round trip in 3 hours with elevations from 3000 to 4400 feet. i have done this trail 5 or 6 times since my review and it has become one of my favorites since it is so close to my house. for most people it will provide both a challenge and scenic beauty.
nice day for a hike south on jacks knob trail. saw some ice near brookshire top. made it up to jacks knob and decided to bushwack to the top. not much there and ended up at the chattahoochee river per the GPS. the maps indicated a spur trail to the north of jacks knob but it was nowhere to be found. lots of wet leaves made it a challenge for this 60 year old but no accidents thanks to the twin hiking poles. 6 miles out and back in 3 hours. there were some nice hemlock trees along the way. i encountered 1 human 4 chipmunks and a few birds. another great option is to continue east to the blue mountain shelter and unicoi gap which would be 7 miles. the trail gets quite rocky and scenic .. definitely worth the extra effort to see this beautiful and remote area.
Great hike. Did in end of November so all the leaves were down and that probably influences my rating and my opinions of each side. We parked at 180, which is the bottom of the road to Brasstown bald and went up the side South of the road first, to Chattahoochee gap, then back down, up the Brasstown Bald side, then back down.
GPS came is a touch over 9 miles and as expected the climb to Brasstown topped out at about 1600 feet of ascent. Some people may rate it all the way to the top but that's actually a different trail so does;t count for Jack's knob. We enjoyed the South section more because with the leaves down the vistas were great and there were awesome sweeping views of the hillsides. The section up to Brasstown was really kind of dull in comparison. It would have been better in the Spring with the blooms, but then the South side would have lacked the views, so you get what you get.
This is the third leg of the Brasstown bald hikes and I would rate it the best with Arkaquah second and Wagon Train third. In fairness Arkaquah the same time of year might be pretty spectacular so take it for what it is worth. All of these hikes are great and I recommend them to anyone in the area. Less travelled than the AT near the road crossings and great views.
If you want to start from the Brasstown parking lot and do a true out and back then you want the South end of the lot. It's pretty easy to find from there. When you cross 180, just angle left about 45 degrees and you will find the sign slanting up the hill. The trail is actually in about the only spot that makes sense so just look at the terrain and you will figure it out.
This was a pretty good trail. I started at the trail head located in the Brasstown Bald Visitor Center parking lot and did the full 9 miles 4.5 out and 4.5 back. The first 2 miles of the trail were awesome! It's late spring and the mountain laurels were in bloom. It's like walking in a tunnel of green. It's also an almost all downhill descent. The second 2.5 miles of the trail are across 180. The trail picks up again at the sign about "speed detection devices". It's not easy to spot across the road. The second part of the trail was ok. It was almost all uphill. There were a couple almost good vistas of the mountains. The walk back was good, but that last 2 mile uphill climb was a little rough. The first part of the trail would be its own fun hike, but overall not a bad way to spend an afternoon.
There is a second half to Jacks Knob that I cannot find on here: the hike to the headwaters of the Chattahoochee River. On the opposite side of 180 at the Brasstown Bald entrance parking area the trail ascends to Chattahoochee Gap and connects to the Appalachian Trail. If you are a fan of the Chattahoochee River this is a pretty neat hike as you get to see the spring where the river begins. It is 2.5 miles to the spring and almost all uphill. We came out the same way we went in and were very tired afterward. Also note that there was maybe one spot you could actually see through the trees over the mountain. Our hike was at the end of September. Maybe the views are better in winter. Again this is not the trail that goes to Brasstown Bald but the other half that goes up to Chattahoochee Gap.
My wife and I decided to hike Jacks Knob up to Brasstown Bald...great choice. While the 2.3 miles to the base of Brasstown Bald is a challenge, you can do it in an hour. From there it took us another 15 minutes to get to the very top. The trail is not well used, but clearly marked. This is one of those hikes where you don't get rewarded until you get to the top, but once you are there the views are priceless. Knowing we went all the way from the bottom made it that much more special. Round trip this takes about 3 hours.