Last Day Camping & More Info on the Pinhoti Trail


New shoots on last year's dead flowerhead.

New shoots on last year’s dead flowerhead.

Although I am no longer physically able to do long-distance hiking, I did want to share this update on the Pinhoti Trail for anyone who might be interested in thru-hiking it.

On my previous post about the trail, reader Diane Kepley commented, and I told her I would add her information to a future post:

Georgia Pinhoti trail is open all the way through to the Benton MacKaye trail with new sections being upgraded and improved. Mapping needs an upgrade to be sure but help is out there. Contact me at and if I can’t help you, can point you to others on the Georgia Pinhoti Trail board who can. Many sections are multi use and not as hiker friendly as the Alabama Pinhoti. It’s a great trail system and trail angels are out and about especially if they know thru hikers are coming through!

…and thanks for helping us spread the word. It’s encouraging to know where there is shelter and help along the way! Happy trails to you!

I’m sure that this post will pop up in search engines for people searching for info on the Pinhoti, and I hope they will take advantage of Diane’s generous offer to provide more detailed information.

trail hazardI had planned to post a whole bunch of spring buds and shoots photos today, but after going through them, they look kind of boring.  So I’ll just post photos taken on the short two-mile trail around Coleman Lake.

beaver job





trail steps

Even in death, the remains of this little bird displayed exquisite grace and beauty.

Even in death, the remains of this little bird displayed exquisite grace and beauty.



footbridge by dam

my kind of trail

cool exposed root



There were a startling number of large blowdowns on the trail. Also, many of the pines have been infested with the pine borer. Some areas had been burnt — I’m guessing to help control their spread.




Plant covered roots span the water below.




  1. Thanks for that info. We used to hike the Pinhoti, but it’s been a few years. Now that it is so extensive, I cannot FOR THE LIFE OF ME understand why the State of Alabama (my home) doesn’t lobby for official linkage to the Appalachian Trail. That locale is the true location of the Appalachian foothills and should be the terminus for the AT, rather than Springer Mountain, GA.

    The increase in tourism would be phenomenal. People come from all over the world to visit and hike the AT.

    Our good friend’s brother is Attorney General and if he is elected Governor (an inevitability, I think), I’m going to have a discussion with him about it. When else might you have maximum return on relatively little investment? I’m guessing Alabama politicians aren’t plugged into long-distance hiking.

    In fact, I’m up in that part of the woods as we speak and will be passing very close to the Trail tomorrow on my way home from North Alabama. It’s a lovely part of our state but few people know about it at the moment.

    Thanks for highlighting that area!


    • Kim, I don’t know why they haven’t done it either. The Pinhoti starts at the first of the Appalachian foothills over 1000 feet, as I understand it. It IS the natural beginning of the Appalachian chain.

      A few years back I had read that there were efforts to make it the official terminus of the Appalachian Trail, but nothing apparently came of it. I do hope they will keep trying!

      I did also read that there was some dry ridge walking and water was scarce and had to be cached ahead in some areas. But that could be very old news. If they could route the trail so that beginners on the trail had better access to water and supplies before they become trail hardened and trail savvy, that might attract a lot more hikers, too. When I was considering thru-hiking the Pinhoti years ago, the lack of supply scared me off.


  2. Old Guy

     /  April 6, 2014

    Looks like a great place to visit..I am glad you were able to have some outside time..Old Guy


    • OG, I thought I was going to die of cabin fever before we got out. Now I am getting exciting about flower and veggie gardening. So the cure worked! 🙂


  3. really nice pictures. One looks like a beaver chewed it down. I’m glad the camping fix did you so much good.
    Now enjoy the garden.


    • There were a lot of beaver signs around. In fact, before I rounded the bend and saw that tree, I heard a splash. I don’t know if it was a beaver or a turtle diving into the water!


  4. MarciaGB

     /  April 7, 2014

    Isn’t it wonderful to be out and about again? Going camping and working in the garden/yard give such a feeling of rebirth and freedom when you’ve been cooped up for so long. Ahhhh, the promise of Spring!


    • Marcia, it is just unbelievable the difference camping and working in the garden makes. It is such a hopeful, life affirming thing!

      Today it is thunder storming and is absolutely miserable outside, but I am holed up inside absorbed in planning plant placement in my gardens. So it’s turning out to be a good day, after all!


  5. The 2 mile trail looks fun! Your first shot looks like an oak-leaf hydrangea….I have 3 in my back yard and the foliage in your picture looks like they are all in the same stage of growth. Just love the spring with everything coming up new! I need to find your campground on the map and bookmark it. Previously camped in the Talladaga NF but have no idea where…..too many years ago but the Pinhoti was there, somewhere.

    Our last frost date is 4/20…what’s yours down there? Put my hummingbird feeder up on 4/1 but still waiting for the first to arrive!


    • Lynne, I thought it probably was an oak leaf hydrangea. I had never seen them before we camped there a few years back when they were in bloom. They are the Alabama state flower and are stunning! But I wasn’t absolutely sure that’s what they were and didn’t want to misidentify them. I am so surprised at how they hold onto their flowers over the winter like that! Or maybe they are sepals? Anyway, even dried out and dead, they are beautiful!

      I do so appreciate your help with identification!

      My neighbor said that the first hummers arrived while we were out camping. I put up a feeder, but we’ve had thunderstorms and they haven’t found mine this year. I just brought it in to empty the rain out and refill them. Hopefully they’ll find them in a couple of days!

      I understood our last frost date to be May 1. I read that shortly after we moved here and never re-checked it. It sounds wrong, though, since yours is earlier than that!

      I have all kinds of flowers and veggies to get planted this week. The rain should be past this evening. Got lots of errands to run tomorrow and then it’s into some serious gardening!

      Will probably meet up with a friend in NE GA in a couple of weeks for another 3 days of camping. YAY! 🙂


  6. Oh what a horrible blog friend I am!!!! I have not been “with it” lately. Our son suddenly found the “right” apartment in Auburn and decided he best take advantage so we have been helping him pack and move!!! He is (suppose) to be getting married May 8th on the beach in Gulf Shores. Busy is what our lives have been like lately!!
    So glad you were able to get away and go camping!!!!!!!!! Love, love this campground. We have put it on our list of places to explore..once the wedding is over and we have time to breath!!


    • Gerri, how exciting!!!!!!! And what a gorgeous place to choose for a wedding!

      One thing for sure, Coleman Lake is the perfect place to unwind! Hope you love it there, too!


  7. Looks like some SUPER hiking Trails to enjoy…and beavers as icing on the cake…haven’t seen those in a long time….glad you and Ron are enjoying the time…Happy Trails…Horst sends


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