Grab A Leash And Hit The Trail! 6 Dog-Friendly Hikes in Georgia
I’ve always loved hiking and camping with my two dogs Murray and Munson. Their trail love is unmatched: if I touch my backpack, they’re prancing around and eager to go on whatever hiking adventure is in store. While many Georgia trails are dog-worthy, we have a few that are our go-to favorites whenever we’re hiking in our home state.
Augusta Canal Trail
Dog Perks: The mostly packed-dirt trail (a section near downtown is paved) runs along a strip of green between the canal and the Savannah River, where mini rapids cascade over small granite ledges. The canal side of the trail features slow moving water. Select spots along both sides of the trail allow Fido to play in the water.
Human Perks: Enjoy the charm of the canal’s wide, level towpath, once used by mules to pull canal boats to the head gates. Hike along tree-canopied segments while adjacent cool waterways offer relief in the steamy summer months. Trailside activities include boat tours of the Savannah River, canoe and kayak rentals.
Crooked River State Park
Dog Perks: The park features four distinct nature trails that wind through forest and salt marsh. There are swimming holes available for both dogs and humans.
Human Perks: The open woods are ideal for bird watching enthusiasts: red-bellied woodpecker, pileated woodpecker, flicker, sapsucker, yellowthroat warbler, pine warbler, Northern parula warbler, yellow-rumped warbler, nuthatch, great crested flycatcher, Acadian flycatcher, barred owl, great horned owl, red-tailed hawk, and migratory songbirds and raptors.
Tugaloo State Park
Dog Perks: The park features two nature trails that wind through forested areas and around Lake Hartwell with gentle hills and stretches of flatter trail comprised of hard-packed soil.
Human Perks: Both the Sassafras and Muscadine hiking trails wind through oak, walnut, mulberry and cherry trees. There’s many activities to enjoy including a swimming beach, tennis courts and volleyball. The lake is known for boating and fishing is excellent year-round.
FDR State Park: Pine Mountain Trail
23 interconnecting miles
Dog Perks: Take the 7-mile Wolfden Loop and it’s a full day full of splashing, swimming adventure with a lot of places to cool off in creeks and falls.
Human Perks: There are seven trails suitable for day hiking with lengths varying from 3 to 8 miles in length. There is a strict “no wheeled vehicle” policy so no need to dodge fast moving mountain bikes along the trails.
Long Creek Falls via Appalachian Trail
Dog Perks: Soft compacted soil and relatively short distance make this an easy hike for after school or work. There’s plenty of splashing fun in the creek all the way up to the falls.
Human Perks: This is a sweet short little hike for a family with small children. It’s just the right length for the little ones and nice to hike through beautiful forest. Spring would be the best time to hike when there is plenty of water cascading over the waterfall.
West Palisades Trail
Dog Perks: Hard compacted soil and good splashing fun, with scrambling over a large rock outcrop at Long Island Shoals, a favorite swimming hole for water-loving four-footed trail buddies.
Human Perks: Explore the Chattahoochee River’s most popular recreation area in metro Atlanta. Plenty of running, walking and biking trails follow a paved path through wooded forest and river ecosystems that are perfect for spotting wildlife. Terrain varies from flat to rolling hills to a couple short but steep sections.
Silver Comet Trail
Dog Perks: When it’s too muddy for the human companions, this paved path has no cars and just a few hills. Perfect mile after blissful mile of paved, smooth trail that just begs for a long-distance energy burning after work walk.
Human Perks: Georgia’s Silver Comet Trail follows an old rail line for 61 miles from just outside of Atlanta to the Georgia-Alabama state line and continues as the Chief Ladiga Trail. One of the longest paved pathways in the U.S., the trail cuts a scenic route through preserved forests, rural countryside and historic downtowns.
Whether you live in Georgia or are just visiting with your pooch, be sure to check out these dog-friendly trails so you can both get a workout and enjoy the relaxing beauty and nature found on Georgia’s trails.
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