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Hiking in Blue Ridge

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New Orleans
posts: 3
reviews: 1
Hiking in Blue Ridge

Looking for the best trail within a half hour drive of blue ridge. the hike needs to be easy enough for kids and the area accessible by regular car (without 4wheel drive). We'll be in blue ridge the first week in July.

Thanks for your help!

posts: 78
reviews: 4
1. Re: Hiking in Blue Ridge

See the following Forums as a start to your question

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g34778-i3004-k3133…

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g34778-i3004-k1622…

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g34778-i3004-k3849…

Not sure the age of kids or your physical ability, but if limited then would agree with last link here and not hike up Amicolola falls, but instead park at bottom for a little hike to base of falls. Then hop in car for a steep short drive up to top to see view from there. Also nice lodge and restaurant with views (including sunsets certain times of year) a little further up.

Gainesville, FL
posts: 4
reviews: 18
2. Re: Hiking in Blue Ridge

Hey there ~~ I have a few suggestions that may work for your family. First, I think it may be a little farther than a half hour from Blue Ridge (maybe 45 minutes? I'm sure you can map it), but Long Creek Falls is DEFINITELY a hike worth checking out. It is a mile to the falls once you get to the trailhead which is about 5 miles on a forest service road. Our Odyssey had no problem with the road and there were many other non-4 wheel type cars there as well. The hike is a very gradual uphill, a bit rooty in places, but not horrible by any means. (But don't wear flip flops). The falls are beautiful and you can actually see some pictures here on Trip Advisor. It is south of Blue Ridge, and to get there I would take the Aska Road to Newport Road, take a right onto Newport then follow Newport to Doublehead Gap Road and take a left onto Doublehead Gap Road. The asphalt will end, but keep going. You will pass an old church and cemetary before you come to Forest Service Road 58 (I think that is it), take a right onto the forest service road. By the way, if you get on the National Forest Website for the Chattahoochee National Forest, you can download a PDF copy of the Forest map. It is really helpful. Anyway....once you are on the forest road, it will take you up and down along the Noontootla Creek, which is beautiful as well, until you get to the trailhead for Long Creek Falls, which will be on your left. There is another trail there, the Benton McKaye (I think I spelled it wrong) that follows the same trail until it branches off, so you'll be walking along it as well.

Another option just south of Blue Ridge (like 8 miles, I think) is the Aska Road Trail System, which is used by mountain bikers and hikers. (…usda.gov/recarea/…) My family has not hiked these trails, but we did bike the flat creek loop, which was pretty arduous! I wouldn't recommend that for a family with small kids. Plus, even though there was a creek at one point, it was a long loop trail of 5 miles of very steady uphill and downhill. Across the street is another, shorter trail. If you download the Aska Trails handout from the link above, it will give you some descriptions.

I'm sure there are LOTS of other family-friendly hikes in this area, but these are a few that my family is familiar with (we are actually from Florida, but love it up here). You can check with some of the local outdoor stores as well. They will probably have some good suggestions. ENJOY! My family was up here in August once and it is just so awesome to be able to play in the creeks and enjoy the nature of this area.

New Orleans
posts: 3
reviews: 1
3. Re: Hiking in Blue Ridge

thank you both! looking forward to a great trip!

Georgia
posts: 1,299
reviews: 1
4. Re: Hiking in Blue Ridge

re: along the Noontootla Creek, which is beautiful as well, until you get to the trailhead for Long Creek Falls, which will be on your left. There is another trail there, the Benton McKaye "

Unless I'm mistaken that is also the Appalachian Trail as well. Long Creek Falls trail is actually the App. Trail.

That Noontootla Creek is beautiful. The Forest Service Roads around there are fun to explore. If you follow that road to the top of the ridge and then turn right, you drive along the ridge for several miles and come to a parking area for Springer Mountain and the Appalachian Trail. Springer Mtn is the official southern end of the trail.

Get a good map though, if you are exploring. You may also luck out and trip across the Army Rangers training up there. At least half the time I go up there I pass Ranger humvees and other equipment or platoons out hiking/training. Twice I really lucked out and saw helicopters swoop in for a pickup.

5. Re: Hiking in Blue Ridge

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