Atlanta is known for its crazy traffic and challenging airport. But it is also known for the carpet of green that covers the city far and wide. A week ago (or so), I was looking for a new hike not too far from the city and new to me. Thankfully, we are not lacking for good hikes within 30 mins of the city (and if you expand that to 1.5 hrs, the possibilities are endless it seems!).
I opted to go north on I-75 to climb Pine Mountain in Cartersville. The 4.6 round-trip hike was of moderate difficulty and not heavily trafficked. When I arrived around 9:45 AM, the small parking lot of Main St. (not even a quarter mile from I-75) was pretty full.
The trail has a West Loop and an East Loop connected by a pass where the summit is found. We hiked the southern end of both loops and the returned via the northern loops. It was beautiful terrain and, with trees still not fully covered with leaves, one could see much further around which is one of the things I enjoy about hiking in colder weather.
What I enjoyed about this hike, beyond its accessibility for this city dweller was that it offered a great view of the carpet of green that is the greater Atlanta metro area. In the distance I could see the faint skyline of downtown, Midtown, Buckhead and Sandy Springs with Lake Allatoona in the foreground. I have to say, this was a neat hike easily fitting in a half day. I leave you with pictures from the hike and the view though the skyline is too small for it to show well on the photos so may not even see in these photos. Beware: a lot that looks like just green forests actually hides neighborhood after neighborhood in greater Atlanta!