Top 10 Things To Do In Blue Ridge

Top 10 Things To Do In Blue Ridge

Blue Ridge, GA

Hike the Benton MacKaye north and in 13 miles it crosses the pristine Toccoa River on a structure known simply as the “Swinging Bridge.” It is the longest suspension bridge east of the Mississippi and was built by the Forest Service and the Georgia Appalachian Trail Club in the mid-1970’s. The Benton MacKaye continues through some very remote areas of Georgia, entirely in Fannin County for this portion of the journey. On any given weekend the Toccoa River is a popular destination for tubing, canoeing, kayaking and trout fishing. Beginning at Deep Hole, a Forest Service Campground, paddlers make the 17-mile Toccoa River Canoe Trail journey, passing under the swinging bridge and into the Aska Adventure Trails Area, where hiking and mountain biking are also popular. As the Toccoa River slows, Lake Blue Ridge is formed by the TVA dam. Here boating and fishing are popular pasttimes for the outdoor enthusiasts. Once the Toccoa River leaves Lake Blue Ridge the river begins its journey down the wide valley known as the McCaysville Basin. Trout fishermen frequent this area of the river, as settlers and Native Americans did before them. West of the valley the Cohutta Mountains rise so high that the Cherokee Indians considered them to hold up the sky. Waterfalls, remote backpacking, hiking and camping are some of the recreational opportunities here. Then, as the Toccoa leaves McCaysville its name changes to the Ocoee. World-class whitewater and the Ocoee Whitewater Center are just a few miles ahead. Beyond Fannin County are more incredible opportunities. From the Blue Ridge Parkway and the Southern Highroads Trail to the incredible beauty of the Smoky Mountains, Fannin County, Georgia is truly the Gateway to the Blue Ridge Mountains!!

 

 

Top 10 Things To Do In Blue Ridge
Watch a sunset at Brasstown Bald – Brasstown Bald is the highest elevation in Georgia – 4,784 ft. Every sunset is different, even on back-to-back days. Some days you are in the clouds and can’t see anything. Helton Creek Falls 2. Discover Waterfalls – Amicalola Falls, Helton Creek Falls, Desoto Falls, Fall Branch Falls, Sea Creek Falls, Jacks River Falls are the most popular waterfalls in the area. You can expect to hike anywhere from 0.1 miles to 9.2 miles to view the waterfalls. Several of these we have not visited and we will report to you what we find. The water falls we visit most often is Helton Creek Falls, near Brasstown Bald. We make a adventure of Brasstown Bald, Helton Creek Falls and a picnic at Vogel State Park, all close to each other. Suspension Bridge over the Toccoa River 3. The Toccoa Swinging Bridge -part of the adventure is getting there, but it is not the easiest thing to find and you will have to travel 3 miles down gravel roads to get to the parking lot. The Benton MacKaye and Appalachian Trail merge to cross over the Toccoa River and this 265’ long suspension bridge. The bridge was built in 1977 From the parking lot, you will hike down a well worn trail about ½ mile to the river and the bridge. The area around the bridge is a popular camping and picnic area, and some people brave the water and swim here in the summer. This is not a strenuous hike, and is short enough that young children will enjoy the hike. Make time to explore the Toccoa Swinging Bridge during your visit to Blue Ridge. Whitewater Rafting on the Ocoee River 4. Whitewater Rafting – this is a must do! The Toccoa River changes names to the Ocoee when it crosses into Tennessee. On both sides of the state line, there are numerous rafting companies which will take you on a whitewater rafting adventure; they supply you with everything including a guide for your trek. This river is part of TVA and there is a schedules for times and dates for water release on the river. Certain sections are only available for whitewater rafting and kayaking on the weekends. The Ocoee River is traveling through the Cherokee National Forest, and children under 12 are not permitted to participate in this adventure. Trail Riding On Horseback 5. Horseback Riding – there are numerous places where you can experience horseback riding in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Georgia. There are also several horse trails and guides to take you out on more extreme adventures. 4-wheeling at Davenport Mountain 6. ATV – I believe that there are 49 designated ATV areas within 50 miles of Blue Ridge. We have only experienced a few of them ourselves, working on gaining more experience and confidence with riding an ATV in the mountains before we go out and discover more trails. Many of these trails are closed January- March, call before you haul. I have not discovered anyone who rents ATVs in this area; you will have to bring your own. Rock Outcrop off the Duncan Ridge Trail 7. Hiking – trails, trails, and more trails! The Appalachian Trail, Benton MacKaye Trail, Duncan Ridge Trail, Aska Adventure Trail, and many more trails abound in the Blue Ridge area. With the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest, Cherokee National Forest in Tennessee just across the state line and numerous wilderness areas, there are hundreds of miles of hiking trails in the area certain to satisfy every skill level of hikers. Your biggest challenge in hiking may be getting back to your vehicle. Most trails have access points where you can park a vehicle, unless you drop off a second vehicle at your exit point, you will have to hike back to get to you vehicle. There are several loop trails in the area as well. Do a little research before you lace up your boots and head for the woods, locate maps and supplies from local outfitters, and make sure someone knows where you are going. Most of the areas you will explore will be out of cell phone range. Flyfishing 8. Fishing – lake fishing, creek fishing, river fishing, fly-fishing. . . it’s all here. You can fish Lake Blue Ridge for Walleye, Small Mouth Bass, White Bass, Bluegill, Yellow Perch, Channel Catfish and Flathead Catfish. Fish the Toccoa River, Rock Creek, Cooper Creek, and Noontootla Creek for some of the best trout fishing in Georgia. Fishing guides will instruct and guide you in the fishing trip of your dreams. Lake Blue Ridge 9. Boating – If it floats, launch it. Lake Blue Ridge has over 100 miles of shoreline for boating and jet ski enjoyment. On the Toccoa River, you can experience the Toccoa River Canoe Trail, and canoe, kayak or tube on the upper and lower Toccoa. Whitewater rafting and Kayaking begin where the Toccoa changes names as it crosses into Tennessee.