|Trail Length: 5.6 miles||Type of trail: Loop|
|County: Cobb County, GA||Our rating: Moderate|
|Features: songbirds, historic, 60hikes||Your rating:|
|Usage: Medium||Added on: June 22, 1994|
|Last hiked: August 07, 2004||Updated on: December 04, 2010|
|About these ratings|
Hiking trails in Cobb County, GA
From your car head to the south end of the parking lot, where a compacted clay trail takes you to a large rock that designates the trail. Turn right on the gravel road and walk around the gate, intended to keep cars from entering the trail. The pine/hardwood second-growth piedmont forest was the area where the Union line formed on June 27, 1864. From this point they would advance through their own line and attack the entrenched Confederates on Cheatham Hill to the east
Initially the path climbs to what is the high point of the walk on a mostly shaded gravel road. From this point, at about 0.2 miles, the trail descends, sometimes sharply, to John Ward Creek. From the river valley the trail begins a moderate climb, broken by stretches that are level and downhill, for the next 0.8 miles.
As the trail curves to the left it begins to parallel Powder Springs Road. Hikers are walking along the northern end of the Battle of Kolb's Farm battlefield. Union General William Tecumseh Sherman, trying to outflank Joseph Johnston, the Rebel commander, moved Joseph 'Fighting Joe' Hooker's XX Corps south. General John Bell Hood, without orders, decided to attack the federals across an open field to the South. Although he lost many more men than the Union defenders Hood stopped the Union move to the south and forced Sherman into a frontal assault against the Confederate stronghold, Kennesaw Mountain.
Just before Cheatham Hill Road, Kolb's Farmhouse is across Powder Springs Road and visible from the trail. Built by Peter Valentine Kolb in 1836, the house features two sets of double chimneys. Referred to as Kulp's Farm in some Union dispatches, it was used by Hooker as Headquarters after the battle. As you descend to the roadway, turn right and carefully cross Powder Springs Road. A few feet south of the road is a small parking lot with historical markers. From this parking lot you can view the home, but do not approach the building - it is still a residence.
After crossing Cheatham Hill Road, the path climbs a set of stone steps and crosses into a field. Here, interpretive signs discuss the battle and a map gives an overview of the attack. Shortly after the map, Kolbs Farm Trail turns north and returns to Cheatham Hill. This portion of the treadway is significantly different than the western portion of the trail, following streams through deeply wooded areas and at one point nearing a development.
Again the trail falls to cross John Ward Creek and two tributaries. This portion of the trail can be flooded for a couple of days after a heavy rain. There is a marked alternate trail that climbs to a ridge on the left before Kolbs Farm Trail bears right and runs alongside the creek. Giving hikers an outstanding look at a typical north Georgia creekside environment where rich, wet soil is full of plant life.
From the creek the path begins a climb out of the river valley, reaching a three way intersection just south of Cheatham hill. To walk to the Cheatham Hill Loop, take the trail on your right. To continue to the Kolbs Farm Trail parking area, head straight on a trail that turns left as it leaves the triangle. At a second three-way intersection also take the trail straight-ahead that bears to the left. As you begin walking down the ridge you will pass through an earthwork along the "military crest" of the hill. From this point the trail falls into a valley, then begins a moderate to difficult, occasionally switched ascent to the Kolbs Farm Trail parking area.