Locate It: Blairsville

Live and Breathe the Outdoors Life in Blairsville

From pristine hiking trails to glorious waterfalls, your perfect mountain adventure awaits in Blairsville-Union County, Georgia. Spend a day hiking on the Appalachian Trail or climbing to Georgia’s highest peak, Brasstown Bald.

From pristine hiking trails to glorious waterfalls, your perfect mountain adventure awaits in Blairsville-Union County, Georgia. Spend a day hiking on the Appalachian Trail or climbing to Georgia’s highest peak, Brasstown Bald. Enjoy the simple beauty of being surrounded by nature at Vogel State Park. Lakes Nottely and Winfield Scott are waiting for you to kayak, boat, fish, or swim in their miles of natural perfection. New adventures await each day in Blairsville.

In Blairsville, you can hike on the legendary Appalachian Trail via the historic Walasi-Yi Center at Neel Gap. It’s the only place where the 2,189- mile-long trail passes through a man-made structure, and the ground floor of the Civilian Conservation Corps-built building is now a hiker hostel.

Perhaps the breath-taking sights at 4,784 feet above sea level is what brings you to Blairsville, to Georgia’s tallest peak, Brasstown Bald. On the Bald you will find picnic areas with great views; a general store with locally made products; three trailheads – Jack’s Knob, Arkaquah, and the Wagon Train trails – just off of the parking lot; a mountaintop natural science & history museum; theater that plays a short video every half-hour; and an observation deck that offers a spectacular 360° view of the surrounding area. On a clear day, you can see four states, and even the Atlanta skyline, without a telescope! Try the hike to the top of Brasstown Bald using the paved trail.

Other hikes in the area take you to the silvery showers of beautiful waterfalls, including Helton Creek Falls, Trahlyta Falls, and DeSoto Falls. Hike the 0.2-mile Helton Creek Falls Trail to the falls. While the hike is easy, watch for abrupt changes in grade along the short walk. The trail rewards hikers with views of the lower falls, which drop over a 30′ ledge and tumble to a pool below, and the upper falls, a tall, full falls that drop at least 60 feet. Please stay on the trail or observation deck.

The 1.5-mile DeSoto Falls Trail leads to two waterfalls. The lower falls cascade about 20 feet. The more scenic upper falls drop 80 feet. DeSoto Falls was named for the Spanish explorer Hernando De Soto because legend has it that a piece of armor attributed to his expedition was found in the area.

Trahlyta Falls in Vogel State Park is a stepping stone waterfall directly below Lake Trahlyta that falls 40 feet. The trail to the falls is a 1-mile loop trail, short but steep, and worth the effort.  One of Georgia’s oldest and most beloved state parks, Vogel is located at the base of Blood Mountain in the Chattahoochee National Forest. In addition to the Trahlyta Falls Loop Trail, hikers can choose the popular four-mile Bear Hair Gap loop, and the challenging 13-mile Coosa Backcountry Trail. Vogel State Park’s cottages, campsites and primitive backpacking sites provide a range of overnight accommodations, and picnic shelters and tables make the park a great day-trip destination. The park’s 22-acre lake is open to non-motorized boats, and during summer, visitors can cool off at the mountain-view beach.

For fun on the lake, Lake Winfield Scott Recreation Area is a recreation destination situated high in a mountain valley and offering year-round recreation opportunities. Camping, picnicking, boating, fishing, swimming and hiking center around this beautiful 18-acre lake. Another lake in the Blairsville area, 4,180-acre Lake Nottely with its 106 miles of shoreline, has many places to enjoy boating, skiing, and fishing. In addition to accessing the public boat ramps, you can rent boats, personal watercraft, stand-up paddleboards and kayaks from marinas and outfitters on the lake.

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