Sweetgum Loop Trail is a 2.2 mile heavily trafficked loop trail located near Cartersville, Georgia that features a lake 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 but must be kept on leash.

Distance: 2.2 miles Elevation Gain: 196 feet Route Type: Loop

dogs on leash


nature trips


bird watching







wild flowers


Lake Allatoona was built by the Army Corps of Engineers shortly after the end of World War II and it surrounds the park on three sides. This hike on the Homestead Loop is the most varied and interesting in the park. There are excellent views of Lake Allatoona and the damn from ridges along the trail and this route also drops you down to the shoreline of the lake. The park has numerous deer and you are likely to see them as you walk the Homestead Loop.

2 days ago

Nice easy hike with the family

Nice, easy enjoyable hike. Lots of beautiful scenery - expanses of ferns and grass beneath the trees, soft bubbling creek, and lots of shade. Not too crowded, but that may be because of CoVID-19.

bridge out
3 months ago

Trail was nice and easy. Several spots were flooded and required an easy work around. Would rate this trail as easy. Many families with small children were hiking with ease. Plan to return when water level drops.

3 months ago

Easy 2.2 Mile hike. Pay attention to the blazes. merges with other trails. kids loved it.

5 months ago

Almost 5 miles! Beautiful scenery. I tool 3 grandkids 13, 12, & 8. Easy path. Bring water.

7 months ago

Easy with moderate elevation changes. watch for roots and rocks. Nice views of lake Alatoona.

8 months ago

I would definitely recommend this trail. You can walk or run it. It’s got a few hills so it’s challenging as well. It’s not crowded either which is a huge plus for me.

9 months ago

Trail was closed. We had to turn around. There was no notice being us know it was closed until we got to the blockade.

11 months ago

This is a nice easy hike on a well maintained trail. I've hiked this trail at least 8-10 times. It's listed as a 2.4 mile trail, but my fitness app always clocks it right at two miles. Sweetgum is red blazed. It intersects a couple times with the Homestead Trail. When you come to the loop you can go left (easier) or right (harder). Seasoned hikers wont notice a difference, but I'm carrying a lot of extra weight, so I notice the inclines! The trail passes briefly by the lake which was quite high today because of all the recent rain. It can be a little busy on weekends and weekdays are usually sparse. Also of note if you have never hiked this trail, about halfway through the loop you will come out into the open into a large parking lot. Recently they added a few red blazes to trees in the parking lot. You have to cross the parking lot to pick up the trail again.

Wed May 29 2019

Sweet Gum Aka the Red blazed trail makes for a more challenging and scenic hike if you combine this, the Lakeside trail, White Tail Trail, and the visitor center loop trail together since its along the way.

Sat Apr 06 2019

nice trail to walk with the family

Thu Sep 06 2018

This is a good trail to get a little exercise on if your in the area or if you live close by, but I wouldn't go out of my way to hike here.

Mon Jul 23 2018

Great hike, clearly marked, more on the easy side, provides nice picnic spots

Wed Jun 20 2018

Great trail! Red Top always has well marked trails. I've done this one many times with my pup.

Tue Jun 12 2018

This is a great loop trail. It's a fairly easy well maintained path. Nice views of the lake as you weave in and out of the beautiful hardwoods.

Tue May 29 2018

Did something crazy and hiked every trail at Red Top one Sunday. This review will cover the entire experience. Well marked, nicely maintained, and surprisingly quiet considering how popular it is. The views were gorgeous and there is enough of a variety in the trails to really give you a workout. Great place to train for more strenuous hikes and events.

Wed May 23 2018

well kept and marked! I liked that there are spots on the trail that are on the water so my pup can cool off!

Sun May 06 2018

Really nice, well-kept trail. I don't think it should be classified as "moderate"; it was pretty flat with the occasional gentle slope. It crosses the Lakeside trail too, if you'd like to see some beautiful views of the lake.

Thu May 03 2018

Well marked trail(s) and well taken care of. It’s more of an easy hike with a couple of inclines but all and all it’s a great trail to hike.

Thu Apr 05 2018

Took the kids and had a great time. Saw a few deer and that brought a huge smile and excitement to the kids. Walked this trail and a smaller 3/4 mile loop connected to this trail. Beautiful views of the lake. Lovely trail. I am not an avid hiker and agree with the “moderate” skill level.

Mon Mar 19 2018

Definitely not moderate- should be classified as easy. Some slight elevation and pretty smooth. Remember to pay to park- 5usd

Mon Nov 06 2017

I would probably rate this trail as easy. Short little afternoon hike with some awesome views of the trees changing colors and of Lake Allatoona! We posted about this hike on our Instagram page @pathsandpourovers if you'd like to check it out!

Mon Jul 03 2017

moderate trail

Tue Jun 27 2017

Sun Feb 26 2017

Easily marked with some twists and turns (some uphills) throughout. Nice trail maintaining though, props to Georgia State Parks for keeping it litter free and well maintained.

Wed Dec 14 2016

Beautiful trail! My husband and I hiked it(walking briskly) in an hour. Going to try the Homestead trail next which is twice as long. Pretty easy hike with the exception of some moderately steep hills to climb. Great workout!

Wed Dec 14 2016

Great hiking trail lots of roots and rocks but not bad.

Sun Aug 14 2016

Nice hike. I need new hiking shoes however.

Thu May 26 2016

Great moderate level hike. Good lake views. Lots of deer and snake sightings

Showing results 1 - 29 of 170