Join Georgia’s State Parks and Historic Sites for First Day Hikes on New Year’s Day

First Day Hikes—January 1st, 2017

All across the country, park rangers are inviting Americans to start the New Year with an energizing First Day Hike. In Georgia’s State Parks and Historic Sites, dozens of guided treks will encourage friends and families to connect with nature and each other. First Day Hikes are part of a nationwide initiative from America’s State Parks to get people outdoors, with hundreds of hikes scheduled in all 50 states. Cabins, yurts and campsites are still available for New Year’s Eve as well. Below is a sample of November 2016 events at Georgia’s State Parks & Historic Sites.

First Day Hike 
Sunday, Jan 1, 2017 9:30 AM to 11 AM
A.H. Stephens State Park – Crawfordville, GA
Kick off the new year with a moderate 3 mile Ranger led and pet friendly hike. We will hike to our C.C.C. firetower and to some never before seen CCC structures located on our horse trails. Shortly after we will stop for lunch on Lake Buncombe. Please wear sturdy shoes, bring your own lunch and water. Each hiker will also receive a special gift. $5 plus $5 parking. 706-456-2602.

Get Outdoors Georgia
First Day Hike Along The Good Ole Chattahoochee River
Sunday, Jan 1, 2017 10 AM to 11 AM
Chattahoochee Bend State Park – Newnan, GA
Come and embark on a guided hike along the Riverside Trail. It will be a relatively easy two mile hike. The stretch that we will be setting foot on encompasses a vast amount beautiful scenery. Start the year off right with a rejuvenating stroll through the park. $5 parking. 770-254-7271.

First Day Hike at Crooked River
Sunday, Jan 1, 2017 1 PM to 3 PM
Crooked River State Park – St. Marys, GA
Greet the New Year with a “First Day” hike. Vistas include wetland habitats plus our unique longleaf pine/saw palmetto ecosystem. Enjoy the great outdoors, camaraderie on the trail, and party hats. Please pay at the Park Office. $2 plus $5 parking. 912-882-5256.

First Day Hike on Lake Lanier
Sunday, Jan 1, 2017 2 PM to 4 PM
Don Carter State Park – Gainesville, GA
Join a ranger as we explore a beautiful backcountry area of the park. Our 2 mile cross country adventure will follow old road beds, ridges, hills and valleys. Moderate to strenuous. Wear closed-toe shoes and bring water. Meet at the trail-head parking Call the Visitor Center to reserve a spot. Limited to 15 hikers. $5 plus $5 parking. 678-450-7726.

First Day Hike on Beautiful Magnolia Trail
Sunday, Jan 1, 2017 10 AM to 12 PM
Fort McAllister State Park – Richmond Hill, GA
Enjoy the first day of the New Year hiking our Magnolia Trail. Visitors will begin from the visitor’s center, walking down our paved causeway to the trail-head of Magnolia Trail. Take in the vistas of salt marshes and maritime forests. Dress for weather. Bring water. Dogs must be on a 6-foot leash. $5 parking. 912-727-2339.

First Day Hike at Fort Morris
Sunday, Jan 1, 2017 11 AM to 12 PM
Fort Morris Historic Site – Midway, GA
At 11 am and 1 pm, site interpreters will present soldier talks, musket demonstrations and a guided walk around the historic remains of the Revolutionary War fort, Fort Morris (Sunbury Fort). $3- $5. 912-884-5999.

First Day Hike of Bird Berry Trail
Sunday, Jan 1, 2017 10 AM
Fort Yargo State Park – Winder, GA
Bring in the New Year with a brisk walk and morning viewing of beautiful Marbury Creek Water Shed. Hikers will meet at the Nature Center for the 1/2-mile hike around Bird Berry Trail. No minimum age and ADA Accessible. Pre-registration appreciated but not required. $5 parking. 770-867-3489.

First Day 3 Mile Nature Hike
Sunday, Jan 1, 2017 10 AM to 11 AM
George L. Smith State Park – Twin City, GA
Come join us for a Ranger led hike of our 3 mile nature trail. This will be an excellent chance to observe birds and other wildlife native to the park. Wear comfortable shoes, bring water and snacks. Dogs are allowed on 6′ or shorter leashes. $5 parking. 478-763-2759.
Get Outdoors Georgia

First Day Hike at Mistletoe
Sunday, Jan 1, 2017 2 PM to 3:30 PM
Mistletoe State Park – Appling, GA
Come start the new year off the the right foot. This ranger-led hike will allow guests to discover nature’s winter wonder along the Cliatt Creek nature trail. We will meet at the nature center to begin this hike. Dogs welcome. Please bring water and sturdy shoes. No strollers. $5 parking. 706-541-0321.

First Day Hike – Richard B. Russell State Park
Sunday, Jan 1, 2017 2 PM to 3 PM
Richard B. Russell State Park – Elberton, GA
Those wishing to increase their metabolism and decrease their waistline are invited to start the New Year with a healthy walk in the woods on January 1, 2017. We have planned a pet-friendly, naturalist-guided, hike on our fitness trail as part of national “First Day Hikes” program. Meet at the Blackwell Bridge Trailhead to join. $5 parking. 706-213-2045.

First Day Hike: Sunrise on the Boardwalk
Sunday, Jan 1, 2017 7 AM to 8 AM
Stephen C. Foster State Park – Fargo, GA
We will begin the first day of the new year by watching the first sunrise over the Okefenokee of 2017. As the swamp emerges from the dark of night, we will discuss the importance of fire, watch for birds and listen for creatures as we hike along the Trembling Earth Nature Trail. $5 parking. 912-637-5274.

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