you'll want to visit these DESTINATIONS
The area is also filled with Civil War history, Native American sites and shopping from antiques to outlets. Fort Mountain State Park is also nearby and two sate historic sites – the Chief Vann House and the New Echota Cherokee Capital Historic Site near Calhoun – provide interesting side trips.
It's easy to see why this is one of Georgia's most popular state parks. Amicalola, a Cherokee Indian word meaning "tumbling waters," is an appropriate name for these 729-foot falls ~~ the tallest cascading waterfall east of the Mississippi River. An 8.5 mile approach trail leads from the park to Springer Mountain, the southern end of the 2,135-mile Appalachian Trail. However, numerous other trails are available for shorter journeys. Be sure to stop by the visitor center to see nature displays, live exhibits and a gift shop. Park Hours: 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Office Hours: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
In 1958, the southern terminus of the Appalachian Trail was moved from Mount Oglethorpe approximately 14 miles to the northeast to Springer Mountain because of increased development around Mount Oglethorpe. The most popular approach trail to Springer Mountain starts at the visitor's center of Amicalola Falls State Park and is 8.3 miles (13.4 km) in length. There is also another trail, leading from a parking lot on a forest service road, that is only 1.8 mile (2.89 km) round trip (.9 miles one way). At the peak of Springer Mountain is a bronze plaque with the Appalachian Trail logo, a register for hikers to sign, and a benchmark. An open-front trail shelter is provided for hikers. The southern terminus of the Benton MacKaye Trail (84.19362W, 34.62963N) is about one hundred yards north of the shelter's spur trail's junction. A bronze plaque honors Benton MacKaye. The plaque is on a rock by the Benton MacKaye Trail a few yards east of the Appalachian Trail.
" The Booth Western Art Museum in Cartersville has an outstanding collection of Western Art, artifacts and Presidential memorabilia. Their mission is to educate, entertain and inspire guests through the exploration of Western Art, popular culture and American heritage. It's an easy drive of 35 minutes from the Ranch."
Nestled at the southern end of the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Georgia, Carter’s Lake offers a serene and restful respite from the hustle and bustle. The dramatic landscape shifts from gentle rolling hills on the southwest to steep mountains on the northeast near the dam.
The 60 miles of rugged shoreline and 3,220 acres of clear deep water make it the smallest of Georgia’s Great Lakes. Laced with miles of hiking, biking and nature trails, the area is filled with a wide variety of flora and fauna.
Go back to nature at Carter’s Lake with a quiet, serene setting for picnicking, fishing, water skiing or sight-seeing. Hike the nature trails, challenge the popular mountain bike trails, or just spend the day on the beach. The U.S. Army Corp of Engineers has developed many park areas around the lake for day-use activities.
Located on the western edge of Lookout Mountain, this is one of the most scenic parks in the state, offering rugged geology and beautiful vistas. The park straddles a deep gorge cut into the mountain by Sitton Gulch Creek, and elevation differs from 800 to 1,980 feet. The most spectacular view into the canyon is found near the picnic area parking lot; however, additional views can be found along the rim trail. Hardy visitors who hike to the bottom of the gorge (including a 600-step staircase) find two waterfalls cascading over layers of sandstone and shale into pools below.
Fort Mountain State Park
Fort Mountain derives its name from an ancient 855-foot-long rock wall which stands on the highest point of the mountain. The mysterious wall is thought to have been built by Indians as fortification against other more hostile Indians or for ancient ceremonies. Situated in the Chattahoochee National Forest close to the Cohutta Wilderness area, this park offers a variety of outdoor activities. Hikers, mountain bikers and horseback riders will find some of the most beautiful trails in northern Georgia. Most wind through hardwood forest and blueberry thickets, occasionally crossing streams and providing spectacular vistas. During the summer, children will enjoy the sand beach located on a clear mountain lake, as well as miniature golf and pedal boat rental.
Vogel State Park
One of Georgia's oldest and most popular state parks, Vogel is located at the base of Blood Mountain in the Chattahoochee National Forest. Driving from the south, visitors pass through Neel Gap, a beautiful mountain pass near Brasstown Bald, the highest point in Georgia. Vogel is particularly popular during the fall when the Blue Ridge Mountains transform into a rolling blanket of red, yellow and gold leaves. Hikers can choose from a variety of trails, including the popular four-mile Bear Hair Gap loop, an easy one-mile lake loop, and the challenging 13-mile Coosa Backcountry Trail. The park's 22-acre lake is now open to non-motorized boats. During summer, visitors can cool off at the scenic lakeside beach.