Connecting Town and Trail
As the closest town to Amicalola Falls State Park and its A.T. Approach Trail, Dahlonega hosts many aspiring northbound thru-hikers (NOBOs) in early spring, and provides a place for exhausted but accomplished southbounders to lay their heads after finishing the journey of a lifetime. For those of us who just want to spend a day or a weekend on the A.T., Dahlonega is a great home base for trips to Springer Mountain, Ramrock Mountain, and scenic Three Forks, among other Trail destinations. You can find the Dahlonega Area hiking guide here.
Folks in Dahlonega recognize the economic and community benefits of protecting and promoting its public lands and trails. Even before Dahlonega became an official A.T. Community, representatives of a variety of local stakeholders developed a county-wide plan for trails and greenways to connect community centers with recreation destinations, like the A.T.
Plan Your Visit
Dahlonega’s history is, if you'll pardon the pun, rich - the town got its name from the Cherokee word for “yellow” or “gold” because of the abundance of gold in the area, and it was the site of the first major US gold rush, in 1828. Today, Dahlonega is a popular family destination with monthly ‘mountain music’ and art festivals throughout the summer and fall. Chattahoochee National Forest makes up one-third of the county, and additional trails, waterfalls, rivers, scenic vistas and other recreational opportunities abound. Dahlonega's commercial district, including the beautifully preserved public square, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Major wineries have discovered the rich, fertile hillsides of Lumpkin County, and creative spirits find nourishment as well, for Dahlonega has evolved into a center for the performing and visual arts in the North Georgia mountains.
One of the many ways that Dahlonega celebrates the Appalachian Trail and its status as an A.T. Community is by hosting the annual Trail Fest, a celebration of the outdoors and all aspects of non-motorized recreation. Each September, the Yahoola Trails Conservancy and several other partners gather outdoor enthusiasts from all over for workshops, music, authors and speakers, and fun! You can also learn more about other events in Dahlonega throughout the year here.