|Trail Length: 3.6 miles||Type of trail: Loop|
|County: Walker County, GA||Our rating: Moderate|
|Features: scenic||Your rating:|
|Usage: Light||Added on: June 28, 1996|
|Last hiked: June 02, 2014||Updated on: February 08, 2016|
|About these ratings|
Hiking trails in Walker County, GA
The entire hike is within the 24,589 acres Johns Mountain Wildlife Management Area. Hunting is permitted anywhere within the area, so be careful to check locally for hunting seasons. Wear hunter's orange when appropriate.
From the trailhead walk straight ahead, towards a small building and tower antenna. On previous hikes the building has normally been a trash collection, but on our most recent hike it was clean. The well-worn ridgetop path is easily followed and occasionally marked with a blaze that I call white recta-squares (sometimes rectangles, sometimes squares). If you go a ways and haven't seen a blaze, don't worry.
The trail can be rocky in places. It is interesting to note the changes in the flora as the trail becomes rocky -- fewer, lower trees permit light that encourages lower-growing plants that at times choke the path. The ridgetop is wide with gently sloping sides except in three places where a steep, almost cliff-like slope drops sharply near the trail.
After 1.8 miles the gradual downward slope of the trail steepens, then the trail turns to the left (away from the ridge) heading down to a stepping stone crossing of two streams (one is frequently dry) and a wooden bridge over the creek that creates Keown Falls. The upper platform (2.55 miles) for Keown Falls offers a look down at the falls and another scenic view nearby Dick's Ridge. You may follow the Keown Falls path down to the lower platform for another view of these high mountain falls.
The return trip is a grueling mile climb along an old roadbed, rising about 80 feet every .1 mile, along what is probably a logging road, although it did seem fairly well developed. This portion of the trail is easily a "difficult" and could be a strenuous.