Atlanta, GA: Stone Mountain Hike
Are you ready for the ultimate stair master of nature? Then this is the perfect hike! Located just outside of Atlanta, Stone Mountain, which is a part of Stone Mountain Park, is a two-mile round trip hike up and down the mountain. Stone Mountain is one of the only mountains remotely near Atlanta, making it the perfect unique experience, and a must do for any trip.
The hike itself is a vertical incline up the side of the mountain, through the trees. The path is all on stone (pictured above), with some carved out steps.
Up at the top of the mountain, there is a lookout point where one can see and view the Atlanta skyline in one direction, and the Appalachian Mountains in another direction, in addition to viewing parts of Alabama, Tennessee, and South Carolina. In the South, the states are much smaller compared to the West Coast, making it easier to see and get to more places.
Around the side of the mountain runs a railroad. This is a perfect way for children to see the views of the town, without having to hike up. This hike is for sure an actual hike, not a walk or a stroll, meaning that it is a workout and a physical challenge!
We hiked this area in early October, and the trees were starting to turn Fall color. Atlanta is known as ‘a city in a forest’, meaning it is hugged by countless trees. The hike up to the top, showcases how many trees are really in Atlanta, as you can see from above the tree layer.
Another way to get up the mountain is by taking the ‘Summit Skyride’ which is a cable car, up the side of the mountain. If you are feeling slightly adventurous, you can it take up or down one way, and hike the other! In addition to hiking, Stone Mountain Park also has a lake to boat on, hotels and camping options to stay at, shopping, and various festivals and events throughout the year.
Personal Experience: The hike was a great way to see and experience a more local aspect of Atlanta, while enjoying the outdoors. I would recommend this to anyone who is looking for a non-touristy activity, and wants to get some great exercise!
Traveler Tip: This hike is tougher than I was expecting, but still doable. Bring lots of water, stretch before hiking, and realize that this is a roundtrip 2-mile hike. The hike is all uphill, and will leave your legs feeling sore in the morning. Do not do this hike if you do not regularly get physical activity, but instead, take the cable car up the mountain to see the view!