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Jacks River Trail to Beech Bottom is a 14.8 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Epworth, Georgia that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until September. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Length14.8 miElevation gain1059 ftRoute typeOut & back
dog friendlyBackpackingCampingFishingHikingNature tripsForestRiverWaterfallWildflowers
Description
Waypoints (0)

Please note portions of trail may be closed or impassable due to recent storm damage.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (104)
Photos (262)
Recordings (55)
Completed (323)
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Nicole Ivy
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarAugust 11, 2020
HikingGreat!Rocky

I’m not sure what just happened to me. Not a single person or a single sign. My legs are jello! Put your phone in a sealed bag, some of the river crossings were up to my fanny pack without falling in. My family needed 2 sticks to get across all the times. Odd how we didn’t see a single bird, only 2 centipedes and tiny snake. We never really knew where we were, 2.5 hours deep and we never reached the elusive swimming hole full of unicorns and leprechauns. I would probably do it again with ankle supporting boots and more snacks. I wish I knew the difficulty level of what we did, I vote very difficult.

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Ken Brown
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarJune 25, 2020
BackpackingBlowdownOver grown

An amazing hiking experience! We started off in Alaculsey on a 3 day backpacking trip up the entire jacks River trail and then continued along the Benton Mackaye trail. The 22 river crossings (one-way) make this a unique experience. I would definitely recommend trekking poles or find a walking stick. The current is swift and the rocks can be slippery, which makes for a challenging combination at times. We camped out a little past the Rice Camp trail in a beautiful existing site near the river. The reason for 3 starts and not 5 is that the trail is woefully maintained, meaning not at all. Numerous downed trees across the trail and areas overgrown with thorny weeds was not what we were expecting for such a popular trail. If you are used to the Benton Mackaye, Appalachian Trail, or similar maintained trails, you may want to cut your estimated pace in half. The fact that we were backpacking made it more difficult, as our packs would get snagged on the downed trees. Day-hikers wouldnt be affected quite as much

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Matt Rhodes
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 23, 2020
BackpackingBlowdownBugsRockyScramble

this trail is great! we went when the water was a few feet higher than normal and the average crossing was about waist deep. i would recommend bringing trekking poles for the 44 times you cross the river if you do there and back and wearing water shoes or non waterproof hiking shoes at least. pretty easy to spot the crossing but downloading the map helped out on a few. If you go when the water is really high, i would recommend waterproofing your gear inside the pack because some of the crossing were chest deep. lots of down trees and rough trails but worth it

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John Eric Christensen
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 17, 2020
Hiking

It’s a hike in the wilderness but the falls are awesome. Be prepared

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k kim
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarApril 19, 2020
HikingFloodedOff trail

Its nice trail for the first 1.7 miles, then you have to cross multiple rivers... I’m talking over knee water levels. So not sure I’d recommend the trail highly. For a light hike, I would highly recommend the 3.4 out and back until the first river crossing

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Jane Wright
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 7, 2020
Hiking

Not sure about all the complaints about the condition the Trail was in. It’s wilderness. Wild, not suppose to be easy, maintained, the experience of a wilderness is unexpected conditions which makes each adventure different, intriguing, and thought provoking, including any navigational challenges. An advanced hiker never ventures without a map and compass.

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Sheldon Smith
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMarch 28, 2020
HikingFloodedOver grown
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Joe Laing
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarSeptember 2, 2019
HikingBlowdownBugsRocky

The falls were rewarding and beautiful; however I did not enjoy the 22 river crossings required to get there. The rocks were often slippery and a couple crossings were less than obvious, The trail could use some chainsaw love, storms over the last few years has left a lot of down trees to climb over and under. All the river crossings made this 8 mile one-way hike much more time intensive than a typical 8 mile hike. The river crossing are not kid friendly - especially under the age of ten. Small dogs would also be challenged as all dogs would be due to the slippery nature of the rocks. The higher elevation, cool river water and hillsides did keep the temperatures much cooler than in the Atlanta metro area.

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Kyril Solntsev
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarAugust 27, 2019
Hiking

Did it yesterday. I would rate it moderate, not hard, because of virtually no elevation gain. 1000 ft in 7 miles is a joke. Few crossings are not well marked so be on lookout. Otherwise, very pleasant. Water level from knee to waist. Waterfall IS amazing! 8.5 hours in a moderate speed with few stops and swims

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Isaac Patrick
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 24, 2019
HikingMuddy
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Logan Worley
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarApril 6, 2019
HikingBlowdownMuddy
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derik close
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 8, 2018

Not sure where the poster was at who said Jack's River trail was closed but my wife and I just went up Labor Day weekend. No signs at Dally Gap saying it was closed we hiked in 19 river crossing before setting up camp. yes the storms have drastically altered the trail. Between river crossings 2 and 3 is the most difficult. But after that it got a little easier. I always bring my machete since trails like this change all the time. the next day we made our usual light pack to go the rest way to the falls. unfortunately the trial was too obliterated and I just didnt feel like hacking through it. hopefully they get the crew out soon to do some clean up. even with out the falls it's always great camping trip.

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Bryan Ellis
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 2, 2018
Hiking

As of 9/2/18 the Jacks River Trail is CLOSED due to storm damage. It's an amazing trail and hopefully they will open again soon but as of now, hike at your own risk. There are a lot of rangers in the area. If you do brave it, there is some serious dead fall (full tree piles) on the river side trails you will have to forge around. It's closed for a reason, so be prepared. Beech Bottom to the falls is also closed but see my review there for more info.

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Renee Barker
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMay 29, 2018
Hiking

Amazing!!!! My first backpacking trip! We were a group of 10 which included experienced hikers that have done this trail many times and newbies like me. We started in the afternoon on Saturday, camped, hiked to the falls Sunday, camped, then hiked out Sunday morning. We started at the Jack's River Western Trailhead as marked on this map and made our way to Beech Bottom and the falls, but took the Beech Bottom Falls trail back out to a second car we had parked there so that it wasn't a true out and back trail as marked on here. A car was put there in case we had to bail out because of the storm forecasts. We just had a lot of rain (and quite a bit during the trip at night) so the river level was pretty high. Most crossings were very manageable but nearer to the falls, and if you were to continue east past Beech Bottom along the trail (which was our original plan) the river was past waist deep (I'm 5'5'') and moving quickly. We changed our plans and camped a bit past the falls then double backed the next day to take the Beech Bottom trail out once we experienced how deep the river crossings were becoming. I definitely recommend bringing hiking poles to stabilize yourself while crossing. We heard from other groups that came the opposite direction that some crossings were so deep they had to swim across with their packs. The falls themselves were amazing and we did the cliff jump after watching a group demonstrate that they were safe!! The trail wasn't as maintained as other State Parks and National Parks that I've been to -- lots of downed trees to climb over and some overgrown plants but I think that really added to the wilderness feel and it didn't slow us down. We saw one copperhead sunning itself at a campsite but that was the only wildlife encounter. Lots of beautiful scenery, mushrooms, and the river itself made for a wonderful trip.

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bruce neiman
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMay 27, 2018
Hiking

The trail is rated moderate but I guess that is when the water is low. But be warned, this hike has numerous river crossings. The water was waist high in most of the places and a bit deeper in some others. We made it to the fifth camping spot and had to turn around because we could not cross at this point. The water was simply too deep and fast for us to manage with backpacks.That was about 1/3 of the way in or 2.5 miles. I imagine this is a much different trail when the water is low and easily crossed. At this time of year there were plenty of snakes, but this is a gorgeous area and the river is a beautiful hiking companion. The trailhead is accessible after a long drive on a bumpy dirt road with lots of potholes. The area needs some attention in general. Campsites, signs etc. are in bad shape. To this point, we met a couple before the first river crossing looking for Jacks Falls(?) They got their information off the Internet somewhere, obviously not very well communicated. Plan for it and this is a great hike.

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Steve Willis
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 26, 2018

great overnight hike

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Joyce Hague
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 3, 2018

Beautiful hike, and not overly difficult....moderate rating is accurate. The falls are amazing especially when frozen over. The forest road getting there is rough and potentially muddy. Drive a vehicle that’s not low to the ground. Four wheel drive is helpful.

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Amanda St.John
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarDecember 24, 2017
Hiking

Much easier than I thought it was gonna be! The rain held off and we had a great time...it was perfect!!

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Jennifer Haynes
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 10, 2017

Great day hike. We didn’t plan for the length of the trail up to the falls, so our limited time put us having to leave before we were ready. Beautiful sounds of the flowing river greeted us each step. Lots of camping areas along the path.

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David LeBlanc
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 18, 2017
Backpacking

Trail was great! We wore keens and didn’t have any issues, but couldn’t imagine this with Chacos(blisters) or hiking boots(removing and putting back on too often) in comparison. We made a 2 day trip out of it. Beginning and end are a bit faster moving b/c there aren’t a lot of crossings in the first 2 miles and the last mile or so. Had a few issues fining the trail but nothing worth panicking about. The trail is perfect for summer when you can stay cool as you hike. Recommendations: 2 hiking sticks, keen water shoes, water filter to get fresh water

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