Recently PATH partnered with Georgia State Parks and Rockdale County to complete over five miles of new trails in and around Panola Mountain State Park. The portion of this trail that will get even the most avid hill climber’s attention occurs just east of the Alexander Lake Trailhead in Panola Mountain State Park. Expect almost a mile climb as you leave the trailhead before the descent begins into a thickly forested valley, accented by a serpentine bridge high above a trickling creek (see picture above). You will enjoy a stop near the bridge to view the wonders of this beautiful north Georgia setting. This area, previously slated for development, was recently incorporated into the park to serve as a corridor for the trail.
This segment of the Rockdale River Trail was funded by Georgia State Parks, Rockdale County SPLOST, and your donations to PATH. It quietly opened around February 1st yet remains off the radar of many persons frequenting the nearby Arabia Mountain and South River Trails. The newly opened trail continues south and east all the way to South Rockdale Community Park on Fairview Road. Future segments under design will continue to the Monastery of the Holy Spirit and their new visitor’s center.
In addition to the 5.5 miles recently opened, PATH and Georgia State Parks are partnering to construct several more miles of trails within the Park. One spur trail passes through an historic barn, connecting the main trail to the Panola Mountain State Park Visitor’s Center and the new headquarters for Georgia State Parks on State Route 155 (pictured below). Another spur trail will encircle Alexander Lake with a boardwalk over a portion of the lake. These two trails will be completed around June 1st. Check the PATH website for a precise opening date.