Tallulah Gorge State Park: Gorge Floor - Sliding Rock - Rim Loop to Hurricane Falls, Oceana Falls, Bridal Veil Falls, and Inspiration Point, Tallulah Falls, Georgia
Tallulah Gorge is an anomaly in Georgia. The cliff-lined gorge through which the Tallulah River flows is nearly 1000 feet deep in places, and there's no other gorge of this magnitude anywhere else in the state. Tallulah Gorge State Park encompasses all of the gorge below Tallulah Falls Dam and has a number of hiking trails that provide access into the gorge. While some trails follow the rims with breathtaking views of the gorge, a different trail descends hundreds of steps to Hurricane Falls deep in the gorge. From there, one can follow a rugged and rocky footpath known as the Gorge Floor Trail along the river and past two other waterfalls, but a Gorge Floor Permit is necessary for this - and only 100 are issued per day. The extremely steep climb back out along the Sliding Rock Trail is an exciting rock scramble with more views of the cliffs. Lastly, before concluding the hike, you'll have the chance to stop by Inspiration Point - a sweeping panorama that is arguably the best view of Tallulah Gorge. This hike occurred on Saturday, September 30th, 2017. My plan was to hike the Gorge Floor Loop clockwise, later making a side trip to Inspiration Point.
Chattooga Wild and Scenic River: Watergauge Trail (Camp Creek Trail) to Canyon of Five Falls, Tallulah Falls, Georgia
The Chattooga Wild & Scenic River is known for its lengthy and very beautiful gorge, full of rapids and waterfalls. The Canyon of Five Falls is the cream of the crop, the king of them all, perhaps one of the Chattooga River's most beautiful sections. In this 0.1-mile stretch, the river rushes over five significant Class IV or Class V rapids through a gorge full of house-sized boulders. Perhaps the most notable rapid of all is the Crack-in-the-Rock Rapid, where the mighty Chattooga River roars through three tiny slots in a line of huge boulders. In the hot weather and lower water levels of summer, this short but time-consuming hike is perfect. This hike occurred on Saturday, March 18th, 2017. My plan was to hike the Watergauge Trail, also known as the Camp Creek Trail, from the end of Watergauge Road to the trail terminus at the confluence of Camp Creek with the Chattooga River. From there, I would rock hop and wade along the Chattooga River to the Canyon of Five Falls. I would return the same way.
The southeast corner of Rabun County, Georgia, is not known for hiking and pristine nature as much as other parts of Rabun County, especially north of Clayton. Of course, Tallulah Gorge - which occupies the southeastern end of the county - is one of Georgia's best-known and most amazing natural sights. However, there is a lot more to this largely little-visited end of the county. At least some of the creeks in this area have photogenic waterfalls that are not documented well, both small and large, and the area is home to a section of the Wild and Scenic Chattooga River with many rapids. One of the area's more interesting remote waterfalls is a 40-footer located on Cliff Creek, nestled in a beautiful gorge among tall cliffs. This hike occurred on Saturday, March 18th, 2017. My plan was to make an exploratory bushwhack from Watergauge Road into the Cliff Creek gorge in search of a potential undocumented waterfall on Cliff Creek at a very promising location. The bushwhack turned out fairly easy and the waterfall was there, as gorgeous as any.
Year 1: 540.0 Miles
Year 2: 552.3 Miles
Year 3: 518.4 Miles
Year 4: 377.1 Miles