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Pine Mountain Hike – West Loop Trail and David G. Archer Overlook

Pine Mountain Hike – West Loop Trail and David G. Archer Overlook

IMG_20160807_132424553I want to start this off by saying that Pine Mountain is where I started to fall for David. He took me here on our first date. We ended up doing both loops that day because I wanted to spend as much time with him as I could. It was a great way to begin our relationship and we try to do the hike at least once a year.

Pine Mountain West Trail Stats

Length 2.4 Miles
Elevation Gain 605 feet
Difficulty Rating More Moderate than Easy
Trail Type Loop
Date Hiked 08/08/2016
Public Facilities Free parking
Kid Friendly Yes
Pet Friendly Yes

 

This weekend, we just did the West loop trail because it was hotter than we expected. One important tip is to remember that the parking lot you start at determines which loop you will start and end your hike. If you decide to do both loops, that is great, but if you’re only interested in doing one, then you should remember which loop you started with and stay on that one.

You should be warned that if you park at the West loop THERE ARE NO BATHROOMS OR WATER FOUNTAINS. Make sure you stop on your way up if you need to go. Also, make sure you pack enough water for you and your animals, as dogs are allowed on these trails.

IMG_0440I always forget how beautiful the trail is. It is well maintained, and has a lot to see. There is a small creek that runs through the base of the mountain, and there are several boulders and cliffs to check out on your way up.

 

IMG_0430There is one overlook, so both loops will take you to it, and it is called the David G. Archer Overlook. This is a large overlook, and is typically pretty crowded, and we even saw some hammocks this weekend. It is very sunny at the top, so sunscreen is a must if you are planning on spending a lot time up there. The overlook offers amazing views of Lake Allatoona, Kennesaw Mountain, Atlanta, and Plant Bowen.

Throughout the loops, there are signs labeling the trees, which can be nice if you are interested in learning about the vegetation around you.

Pine Mountain West Trail Head Map

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Take some time to soak up the last days of summer, because fall will be here soon. This is an excellent trail if you are an active person. Bring plenty of water and snacks, and don’t forget your sunscreen and bug spray! Happy Hiking!!! 🙂

Video of the Hike

Sawnee Mountain Hike – Indian Seats Trail and Overlook

Sawnee Mountain Hike – Indian Seats Trail and Overlook

Nestled between the Appalachian Trail and Atlanta, Sawnee Mountain Preserve is a perfect hike for beginners, people with large groups looking for a pretty view, or families with children or older people. We reached the top and back in about 45 minutes, and even in the summer Georgia heat, we weren’t very sweaty. Indian Seats trail is all dirt, with a lot of roots, but it also has plenty of shade.

Indian Seats Trail Stats

Length 3.5 Miles
Elevation Gain 436 feet
Difficulty Rating Easy to Moderate
Trail Type Loop
Date Hiked 07/31/2016
Public Facilities Bathrooms, Garden, Visitor Center, and Observation Deck
Kid Friendly Yes
Pet Friendly No

 

It was slightly difficult to find the correct trail, so follow the link below, you will notice that there are two parking lots on different sides of the road, make sure that you follow google maps so you will be on the correct side to see the trail head and map.

To find the trail to the Indian Seats you must first take the very short Laurel Trail Spur. This trail uses a blue marker and is less than .2 miles.

Checkout the video below to see some highlights of our trip. We packed a bottle of water each and some bananas for a snack since we weren’t sure how long it would take. Beware of water-made shortcuts that look like the trail! We were deceived and felt horrible about it when we realized that we’d accidentally taken one.  Be mindful of this as it is part of our duty as visitors to stay on the trail. Shortcuts harm natural vegetation and cause erosion.

The University of Georgia partnered with the trail to label natural wildlife.  This effort is shown all over as trees are marked, indicating what type of tree it is, and there is a small garden area by the welcoming center that displays some natural plants.  It would be worth it to discuss this with your kids on your hike. There are bathrooms at the start of the trail by the welcoming center, and there were printed maps there as well.  Don’t hesitate to ask people on the trail if you get a little backwards, as hiking people are the best people to share nature with.  We hope you bring your families to enjoy the beauty this trail has to offer.