Our first campground in South Carolina was a stone’s throw from the Georgia border, so we definitely wanted to explore northern Georgia while we were close. We found Tallulah Gorge State Park doing a search on Google Maps, and when we saw pictures of the gorge, we knew this was our kind of place. The parking fee for the day, which is good for all Georgia State Parks, was $5.
In our research, we knew there were some limitations on where we would be able to take Daisy, but we brought her along for the adventure. On days where it is going to be a longer day, we like to take her with us to limit the time she is alone in the camper (although she needs her me-time, too). When we arrived, we picked up a map and determined which trails we could go on together.
The trail we were unable to go on with Daisy is the main attraction at the gorge. It takes hikers down over 600+ steps to a suspension bridge, across the river, then up another 400+ steps to the other rim. Due to the construction of the stairs and suspension bridge (and the sheer exertion needed), dogs are not allowed. We understood these limitations and set off on the North Rim and South Rim trails.
We hiked the entirety of the 2 rim trails and visited all the overlooks, taking in the beautiful gorge and many waterfalls below. The trails were in great condition and were really well marked. The only issue we had was that the portion of the trail that connects the North and South Rim trails is on a sidewalk along a very busy highway. We were a little nervous making this short walk but made it across out and back just fine.
The highlight of the hike came toward the end. After we completed the South Rim trail and made our way back along the North Rim trail to the interpretive center where we started, we continued past the center to the first overlook where you find a tower used by Karl Wallenda to tightrope walk over the gorge (which is 750 feet deep at this point) in 1970. From there, we continued along the trail to Interpretive Point. This is the only place where the trail was remotely challenging, but the effort was well worth the beautiful views. From this point, you can see the most of the length of the gorge toward the dam, as well as several waterfalls and the suspension bridge below. While the trail was beautiful without this extra leg, going the extra 0.5 mile is absolutely worth it.
This park is high on our list of places to return to when Little Bird is a little older, as being able to go down into the gorge and cross the suspension bridge would be spectacular. We had an amazing day at Tallulah Gorge State Park, and we highly recommend a visit if you are in the area.