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Cook's Trail [CLOSED] is a 7.5 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Athens, Georgia that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length 7.5 mi Elevation gain 226 ft Route type Out & Back

Dogs on leash

Kid friendly

Hiking

Nature trips

Walking

Bird watching

Running

Lake

River

Views

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Closed

Description
Waypoints (0)

As of June 2020, this trail is experiencing partial closure (Beach Playgrounds, Basketball Courts, Visitor’s Center, Reservable Facilities, Limited access to bathrooms, No Boat Rentals, no swimming) due to COVID-19. Please visit the park website for more updated information. https://www.accgov.com/sandycreekpark

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (44)
Photos (33)
Recordings (41)
Completed (107)
Karen K
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJuly 3, 2020
Hiking

Cooks trail was closed but the other trails in the park were open. We did the Lakeview trial which was great until the last bit walking in full sun with no shade.

New Name
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 19, 2020

Closed due to Corona until further notice

Deven Kenison
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 29, 2019
Hiking

I would absolutely recommend this trail. Very easy with great scenery. It is partially open at the moment due to some damaged boardwalk from flooding but my pooch and I just did the entirety of it (from one end to the other and back again = in and out trail) in just under 3 hours. Could def take longer stopping for pictures or picnics, etc. Today we saw great blue herons, herds of deer and more squirrels than my hound could handle. Lots of other birds to see too if you’re a watcher. Enjoy!

View Deven's Recording
Sara Cramb
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 20, 2019
HikingClosedWashed out

normally a great trail with a lovely boardwalk, but is currently closed due to washout from recent storms.

Megan R.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarMay 6, 2019
ClosedWashed out

I have heard this trail is closed indefinitely due to flooding.

Bryndy Boytel
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarApril 13, 2019
HikingMuddy

Nice halfway point access to Cook's trail off N Bluff Place

View Bryndy's Recording
D.J. Gregory
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 12, 2018
Running

A wonderful down and back if you're in the area and looking for a solid 8 mile jaunt through remarkable scenery.

Stephanie Pfeiffer
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 22, 2018

Perfect running trail! Shady in summertime and flat! Beautiful little creek runs along it; saw a blue heron here last week. 4 miles between sandy creek nature center and sandy creek park (lake Chapman) so you can get in your 8 mile run easy or even add the 7 mile loop around the lake if you run that far.

Richard Shockley
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMarch 17, 2018
Hiking

Hiked on 3.16.18 - all boardwalks have been repaired from storm damage last year. The trail is very susceptible to flooding since most of it follows the Sandy Creek basin. Bring insect repellent because gnats are everywhere. I sprayed Off once when arriving and was never bitten. Trail is mostly flat with lots of exposed roots, so watch your step.

Bob Sleppy
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarNovember 21, 2017

Great trail in the Athens area. The trail is mostly flat and easy terrain. Distance from Sandy Creek Park to Nature Center is about 4.1 miles. Round trip 8.2.

Susan Irick
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 10, 2017
Hiking

WOW, what a great little gem. Very well kept up. Granted we hiked it after daily rain we have had, so some parts were a little muddy. Quite flat but the boardwalks are nice. YES this entire trail,is open. Saw one huge river otter, couple of blue herons, a turtle and a bunny. Will definately go back.

Donnatella Alexander
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJune 27, 2017

Easy and nice

Troy Koenig
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 28, 2017
Hiking

NOT CLOSED. One of the more interesting trails I have hiked. Flat the entire length until you get to either end. Lots of wildlife. Boardwalks over much of the wetter parts. Clean and well maintained. Combined with Lake Chapman, makes an easy day hike.

Bryan Sikes
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarApril 26, 2017

This trail has reopened

Kathy Kessner
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 30, 2016
Running

It was a relatively flat trail with only a couple of very slight elevations. Also, there was only a few trip hazard areas with large tree roots sticking out of the ground. It was pretty secluded with a lot of shade. It was perfect for trail running. However the boardwalk about a mile in is now closed for repairs.

Angela Stewart
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 19, 2016

UPDATE 5/4/18 - TRAIL IS REPAIRED AND OPEN Heads-up - the trail is now closed in the middle due to damage to the boardwalk. You can still get about a mile starting from Sandy Creek Nature Center, or something over 2 miles if you start from Sandy Creek Park. Trail is easy with very little elevation change other than the mile or so closest to Sandy Creek Park. In season, the mosquitos are nightmarish, even with repellent. Still, it's a lovely trail.

Kelsey Cochran
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarJanuary 31, 2016

Muddy trail, and we had to turn back about a mile from the Nature Center because it was completely washed out and my dog can't do the whole log-bridge thing. Overall though I love walking this trail every chance I get.

Jane Buchanan
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarOctober 21, 2015
Hiking

The Cooks Trail hike in Oct. right after many days of rain a couple of weeks earlier expected it to be sloppy. Was not sloppy. Was pleasantly surprised at the lack of mud. Wonderful hike right by Sandy Creek, flat and lots of plants and vegetation. No wildlife this time.

Jane Buchanan
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 5, 2015
Hiking

Named after an amazing man who has made and continues to up keep over 80 trails. He is an icon in the hiking community Dr Walter Cook, we thank you!

Mike Rosonet
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarDecember 27, 2014
Running

Nice soft trail with 3 hills - 1 at the beginning, the middle, and the end entering Sandy Creek Park. The majority of the 2nd mile is spent on a very long boardwalk that my knees didn't enjoy due to erosion which has caused parts of the boardwalk to tilt to one side or the other.

Graham Krieger
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJune 28, 2012
Hiking

This is a nice leisurely little day hike. The path is well worn and easy to follow. The foot traffic was really light the day I went, I only saw one other person. It is relatively flat for the majority of the trail. It shouldn't take the full 4 hrs plus suggested online. It took me about 2 1/2 hrs, but did have a decent walking pace for the whole trail. The terrain is easy, and actually probably about 1/4 of the trail is covered with a wooden sidewalk. There are a bunch of side trials especially around the sandy creek nature center end, that could be used to mix the trail up as almost all of them loop back in to the trail.

Tonya Amen
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarMarch 2, 2012
Hiking
First to Review

This is actually 8.2 miles round-trip (4.1 miles one way). You can start at either Sandy Creek Park or Sandy Creek Nature Center, but must turn around and go back on the same trail as this is an out-and-back, not a loop. The trail is very flat with only a couple of slight hills as you get close to either end. There are some tree roots in a few places, but nothing too difficult to maneuver, in fact I run on part of this trail all the time. Unless you walk really slow or stop a lot, it really shouldn't take 4.5 hours. It's taken me just over 3 both times I did it and that was at a pretty leisurely pace. A nice little hike just outside of Athens.

Peter B.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarAugust 13, 2020
Hiking
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Cody Dyer
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJuly 29, 2020
Hiking
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Liza Burnsed
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJuly 19, 2020
Hiking
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Raul Jaar
Yellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarMay 25, 2020
Hiking
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Sharon Harrow
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarDecember 20, 2019
Hiking
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Keri Bauder
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarNovember 17, 2019
Hiking
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