Tennessee Rock Trail and Tallulah Gorge, GA

April 3, 2007

This week, we hiked on two shorter trails. First, we traveled to Black Rock Mountain State Park and did the Tennessee Rock Trail. Next, we traveled 15 miles or so south and hiked on the Tallulah Gorge Rim trails at Tallulah Gorge State Park.

HIKERS - Phil Achey, John Bellamy, June Bellamy, Phil Brownrigg, Bill Hunt, Bob Magee, Donna Presley, Tony Presley, Carole Raguckas, and Joe Raguckas.

TRAIL INFO. - The Tennessee Rock Trail is a beautiful 2.2 mile loop trail that takes you through a lush hardwood forest that includes a couple of significant hills to climb. This time of year is great for the wildflowers in this area. The Bloodroot, Trillium, Toothwort, and many others are very abundant. Some areas are practically carpeted with wildflowers. There are some awesome mountain views as you climb to the summit of Black Rock Mountain and Tennessee Rock. The Tallulah Gorge trails offer magnificent views into one of Georgia's most awesome natural wonders. The trails have great observation points with information signs and the views are spectacular. Today, we found some rare and endangered Persistent Trillium in bloom. This species is said to exist only in the Tallulah Gorge and Tugaloo Corridor which extends southward from the gorge.

Directions: Black Rock Mountain State Park is located on Black Rock Mountain Parkway, 3 miles north of Clayton, GA off U.S. Hwy. 441. Look for brown directional signs in Mountain City. Tallulah Gorge State Park is located in the town of Tallulah Falls, GA. Parking is available either at the Interpretive Center on the North rim of the gorge or at Tallulah Park on the South side of the Gorge. State Park Parking fees apply. If it is your first visit, it is best to go to the Interpretive Center on the North Side for maps and iformation. Direction signs are very visible on Highway 441 in Tallulah Falls.

Another great day for a hike! Partly cloudy and warm with temperatures ranging from the mid 60's to upper 70's.

Hiking distance approx. 5 miles.

WILDFLOWERS IN BLOOM: Red Toadshade Trillium, Yellow Toadshade Trillium, Fringed Polygala, Bloodroot, Cut-leafed Toothwort, Trailing Arbutus, Pussytoes, Buttercup, Hooked Buttercup, Purple Violet, Halberd-leaved Violet, Round-Leaved Yellow Violet, Mountain Vetch, Star Chickweed, Serviceberry, Eastern Redbud, Small Bellwort, Cinquefoil.

BIRDS IDENTIFIED: Black Throated Blue Warbler, Gold Finch, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Pileated Woodpecker, Black Vulture, Turkey Vulture, American Crow, Towhee, Red eyed vireo, Tufted Titmouse, and Carolina Wren.

Click for a movie clip from today's hike!

scroll down for photos.......

Sign at the trail-head.
It was a great wildflower day! Here we have
(left) Halberd-Leaved Violet (Viola hastata) and Cut-Leaved Toothwort (Dentaria laciniata)(r)
Nice views along the way!
Trillium were very abundant. Here we have
Red Toadshade Trillium (Trillium cuneatum) and Yellow Trillium (Trillium luteum)
Trail marker at the summit.
Awesome mountain views from the Tennessee Rock.
We now move to Tallulah Gorge.
This is the Tallulah Falls Dam. The Gorge starts here.
Looking into the beautiful gorge below with Serviceberry Trees blooming in the foreground.
Looking through the gorge, you can see the suspension foot-bridge.
A view from the suspension bridge!
There were lots of wildflowers on the Gorge Trails. Here we have (left) The rare and protected Persistent Trillium (Trillium persistens) and Fringed Polygala (Polygala paucifolia) (r).
The OFHC gang for today's hike. (l-r) Tony Presley, Bob Magee, Joe Raguckas, Carole Raguckas, Donna Presley, Phil Achey, Phil Brownrigg, June Bellamy, Bill Hunt, and John Bellamy.

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