Bear Creek Trail

MODERATE 129 reviews

Bear Creek Trail is a 6.4 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Ellijay, Georgia that features a river 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.

Distance: 6.4 miles Elevation Gain: 1,108 feet Route Type: Loop

dog friendly

camping

hiking

mountain biking

bird watching

forest

river

views

wildlife

muddy

rocky

Georgia Department of Industry, Trade and Tourism, P.O. Box 1776, 285 Peachtree Center Avenue NE , Atlanta, GA, 30301, Phone: 404-656-3590

mountain biking
rocky
14 days ago

hiking
rocky
1 month ago

Good hike, dog friendly, though we had a few close calls with mountain bikers riding through and had be on alert

hiking
1 month ago

If you have littles or want a shorter hike, park up top and start at the Pinhoti sign. As you go along the trail, there will be a fork, follow the sign for the tree. It’s approximately 1 mile in and 1 mile back to see the tree. There’s a few creek crossings. We have done this a few times since it’s so close to where our cabin is.

hiking
2 months ago

Where to start! Lance and I decided upon this hike based on prior review and were devastated! This hike was measly! No mimosas were had to celebrate, rest assured. We began this hike at the lay-person campsite area where it was packed with many running children (cmon moms!). When we finally made it to the so called “primitive campsite” we were vastly devastated. NO primitive markings, ancestry, or alternative medicine whatsoever. The restroom huts along the way were however quite enticing and pleasant. My favorite part of this hike was a hand-crafted by nature staff for walking, how delicate the wood felt in my bingers. This staff was theived! Robin hoods how dare thy!!

hiking
bugs
3 months ago

hiking
4 months ago

Start clockwise, there is not much elevation Follow sign Pinhoti trail than follow sign Bear Creek. it’s easy and enjoyable trail If you start on right from parking lot, follow sign bear creek loop, than you will hike steep up to hill for ... sometime ... I met hikers who been tired after one mile because they started on the right.

hiking
bugs
5 months ago

hiking
6 months ago

No big waterfalls or amazing outlooks but still a beautiful hike! Very well maintained trail. The big tree is about 1 mile from the parking lot if you go left. Try to bring a car that is a little bigger than a Honda Accord ;)

hiking
8 months ago

Really great hike!!! Minimal people, stream crossings, different terrain throughout! Highly recommend! The directions they provide on maps is not accurate. It will prompt you to turn off Gates Chapel... don’t. Use the service road off Gates Chapel not far from where it prompts you to turn. It’ll take you right to the trail head. Definitely recommend this hike!!!

8 months ago

One of my favorites. Creek crossings, not too steep. really nice hike!

hiking
9 months ago

First time to Bear Creek today and I did it all wrong. I followed the Google Maps Directions (don't do it) which took us to the very top of mountain at upper access point (instead of the lower loop access point) and we had to walk down a gravel road for 2 miles to get to the Loop. Then went clock-wise from the loop which turned out to just be more gravel road. Thus, ended up the hike by walking a gravel dirt road instead of my intent of hiking an actual mountain trail. Will go again and this time access the lower access point and hike the entire loop along Bear Creek and see the giant tree

9 months ago

Great easy hike today in the misty rain. The poplar tree is much bigger in person than in pics! Trail was great. Very beautiful area. Only about a mile hike to the tree.

hiking
10 months ago

Nice weather today for the fist hike of the year. Not too many people out today. This trail is easy with a few moderate spots. Overall a good trail for people beginning hiking or for seasoned hikers as well. Not many views but a chance to see the Gennet poplar, the second largest tree in GA.

Tue Oct 16 2018

Great trail, you will see bikers. Nice Creek crossings, easy trail to follow.

Sat Oct 06 2018

Beautiful trail. Challenging on MB. Worth the climbs. Water crossings.

hiking
Sat Sep 08 2018

A must see! I did not realize that we had trees that big in Georgia.

Thu Jun 07 2018

If you click the Directions arrow through Google Maps, it does not take you to the lower parking area with the easiest access to the trail. The link takes you to the upper which is a 2 mile forest service road walk. The trail is beautiful once you arrive on it.

mountain biking
Fri Sep 29 2017

Great trail. With many ride options.

Fri Sep 01 2017

I took the bear creek spur to the loop, which tacks on a few miles. Great hike, a lot of ups and downs. Crossed some creeks 6 times or so. Plenty of scenery, some fell trees across the trail. Some great campsites, and in the Cohutta wilderness you can camp anywhere as long as regulations are followed. Loved every minute of this hike.

hiking
Thu Aug 10 2017

amazing, gorgeous trail that is pretty easy. frequent run ins with the creek and frequent changes of scenery. be aware of the narrow road on the way in. also, watch out for black bears!! our hike got turned around when we crossed paths with a mama and 4 cubs. the trail also features north Georgia's tallest and widest tree. awesome hike all around

camping
Mon Jul 24 2017

God's country! my happy place! this is the most beautiful place in the world to me! I come here every chance I get. Plenty of private camping areas around the creek or away from it your chose!

Sat Jul 22 2017

A classic!

hiking
Sun Feb 26 2017

Dual use trail, narrow with mountain bikers. can be a bit perilous since the sight lines are too short to see people flying at you.

hiking
Wed Oct 05 2016

Hard to find but worth the drive. I encountered only two people (both on bikes) while hiking. Very dog friendly. My pup loved the creek crossings and laughed at me when I lamented wet shoes. Full loop took us only 3 or so hours. Beautiful forest and quiet. The Gannett poplar was amazing but horribly scarred by others carving the trunk.

Sun Jul 31 2016

Beautiful but I would rate the hike as a black skiing mountain! Trail not well marked. Got lost and ended up hiking a total of 11.4 miles. Some very steep inclines. Not for kids unless you want to end up carrying them or shooting yourself from the whining.

hiking
Thu Jun 30 2016

Well, me and my uncle decided to go for a hike to Bear Creek Trail. While hiking the trail we heard loud screams. Thinking nothing of it we kept moving until we got to the Gennett Poplar Tree. While looking at the tree that we came here to see, I started taking pictures while not noticing that there was something up in the tree. Walking down to the tree I started to read sketching sick people wrote into the tree. Examining the beauty of the tree, as I looked up I saw a baby bear cub up on one of the limbs. Usually meaning the mama was really close by. While this bear was looking into my soul, I instantly took off. Keeping in mind that it would have taken the bear a few minutes to get down that tree. Let's just say we hightailed it out of there! We now understand why it is called bear Creek Trail. LOL!

Sun Apr 10 2016

Bear Creek Trail is a seven mile loop trail located in North Georgia. The trail features some interesting scenery, such as Bear Creek, countless stream crossings and the giant poplar tree. The trail itself is not particularly exciting on the second half of the loop, but the first section is quite lovely as it follows the creek closely. The second half of the loop is essentially a fire or service road and is not particularly exciting. A few views along the way of the valleys below make this section bearable (get it?). Mountain bikers love this trail, which is fine, but I always prefer to hike without the fear of being runover in the middle of a blind curve. This almost happened to my group twice on our hike. I will likely not return. It's a fine trail, well-maintained and clean. But it's not what I want from a day's hike.

Tue Apr 05 2016

Take the Bear Creek Trail to the big Poplar tree. It is a 7 mile loop. Very beautiful. We came in April. Awesome temperature. My dog loved it too! be careful on the streams. I fell walking on a log.

Wed Jan 20 2016

Fun, easy hike! Great for the family!

hiking
Sun Jan 17 2016

One of the best hikes I've done in Georgia! I had an absolute blast here. The trail is dog friendly, but I would advice your furry friend to be larger, as the creek crossing are hard with a smaller dog. The trail is slightly longer than it states here, as I clocked in a total of 7.5 miles at finish. There are some places there are poorly marked, so I'd advise downloading the topo map

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