Chattahoochee National Forest: Currahee Mountain Trail and Upper Frady Branch Trail System to Big Leatherwood Falls and Latham-Edmonds Cemetery, Toccoa, Georgia
The northeast sector of Lake Russell Wildlife Management Area is home to the Toccoa's area best-known peak: Currahee Mountain. Even though this prominent mountain has a relatively low elevation of 1740 feet above sea level, it still is situated well above the surrounding valleys and provides commanding long-range views to the north, east, and south. A steep trail used mostly by rock climbers leads from Highway 184 to the cliffs and views atop Currahee Mountain, from where one can reach the Frady Branch Trail System with some roadwalk. Even though much of the Upper Frady Branch Trail System follows broad forest roads, it has a surprising amount of points of interest, including three historic homesites, a small quarry, an ancient cemetery, and perhaps most importantly: a 50-foot waterfall in the headwaters of Big Leatherwood Creek. Even though Big Leatherwood Falls is less than a quarter-mile from an official trail, it is a very little-known waterfall in a gorgeous pristine setting, and getting to it can be tricky due to the lack of a good path. This hike occurred on Saturday, August 12th, 2017. My plan was to hike the Currahee Mountain Trail to the summit of Currahee Mountain. There, I would follow Currahee Mountain Road to the Latham Cemetery Trailhead. I would then make a loop along the upper portions of the Frady Branch Trail System, making side trips to four historic sites and BIg Leatherwood Falls. I would retrace my earlier steps once I re-emerged on Currahee Mountain Road.
Panther Creek is a popular destination for folks all across north Georgia - in fact, you're unlikely to find solitude on weekends at Panther Creek Falls, the primary destination of most people who hike the Panther Creek Trail. However, what most hikers don't know about is that the full Panther Creek Trail is considerably more strenuous and longer; the trail doesn't just end at Panther Creek Falls. By hiking the full length of the Panther Creek Trail, you will experience a lot more solitude, see more of the creek's more turbulent stretches, and overcome a challenge - as hiking the east half of the Panther Creek Trail is a task that's not for the faint-hearted. This hike occurred on Saturday, September 5th, 2015. My plan was to hike the entire Panther Creek Trail from the eastern terminus near Yonah Dam to the western terminus at Old US Highway 441 and back.
Year 1: 540.0 Miles
Year 2: 552.3 Miles
Year 3: 518.4 Miles
Year 4: 293.7 Miles