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A gorgeous singletrack stretch of southern Appalachia with plenty of elevation gain.

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4,139' 1,261 m


2,023' 617 m


3,326' 1,014 m


3,311' 1,009 m



Avg Grade (6°)


Max Grade (34°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Fall Colors · River/Creek · Views · Wildlife


Coosa Backcountry Trail runs through rugged northern Georgia, northwest of Atlanta. It starts in Vogel State Park and then passes through Chattahoochee National Forest and Blood Mountain Wilderness Area. Many trail races and ultras include portions of this trail, including the GA Death Race.

The singletrack trail passes through prototypical southern Appalachian forest and gives the hiker some serious, and steep, inclines.

Need to Know

This hike starts in Vogel State park, which has an entrance fee.


You begin your adventure by heading to Vogel State Park. Head to the visitor center, where a required permit and map can be obtained (which can be helpful due to other intersecting trails), and begin to follow the green blazes. Near cabin number 7, there will be a sign guiding you to the right and to the trailhead.

The trailhead is the beginning of both the Coosa Backcountry Trail as well as Big Hair Trail. This trail follows the creek until it hits a dirt road. You can head right or left. This description will cover heading right (counter-clockwise).

Shortly after heading right on the dirt road, the green-blazed Coosa Backcountry Trail bears right while the Bear Hair Trail splits to the left.

The Coosa climbs to GA 180 (Wolf Pen Gap Rd). Cross 180 and begin to descend to W Wolf Creek where there is a small camp area.

Past the creek, another climb follows before leveling out and heading to Calf Stomp Rd.

Cross the road and climb toward the namesake of the trail, Coosa Bald, which will be on your right.

For a time, Duncan Ridge Trail joins in the merriment.

There are some additional steep descents and ascents and a short stint on another dirt road, and you are only now getting to the midway point of this hike.

The steepest climb comes after crossing GA 180 for a second time, as you head up the warmly named "Slaughter Mountain".

After the climb, continue to follow the green blazes and the Coosa Backcountry Trail until you rejoin with the Bear Hair Trail again, which will take you back to the trailhead with exhausted thighs and soaring spirits.


Shared By:

Jason Doedderlein

Trail Ratings

  4.3 from 27 votes


  4.3 from 27 votes
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in Georgia


15 Views Last Month
3,904 Since Apr 7, 2015



Looking backward up the Coosa Backcountry Trail - very steep and rocky incline.
Sep 26, 2022 near Blairsv…, GA
Bear scat along the Duncan Ridge Trail.
Sep 26, 2022 near Blairsv…, GA
Coosa Backcountry Trail through GA hardwood forest
Apr 8, 2015 near Blairsv…, GA


Current Trail Conditions

Add Your Check-In


Mar 25, 2023
Nicolas Haddad
13.8mi — 3h 38m
Oct 22, 2022
Andrew Larey
15mi — 7h 00m
May 28, 2022
Michelle Tompkins
First backpacking trip! Camped halfway over night and then walked back the next day! Zelda had a lot of fun and so did Tracy! 13mi
Sep 26, 2021
Amy Palmer
Oct 17, 2020
Harrison Perusek
Awesome fall colors, but not as good in Blood Mountain Wilderness. Eleven blowdowns counted around trail. Going up that first section of Slaughter… 12.5mi — 6h 30m
Oct 9, 2020
Brian Penn
Most challenging hiking trail experience I've ever had. several ascends and descends. I was disappointed that there was no scenic view at the summit. 12.4mi — 7h 21m
Jun 23, 2020
Travis Seiler
Ran this loop in combination with the Blood Mountain Loop and connected the two with the last portion of the Duncan Ridge Trail 12.5mi — 6h 00m
Oct 18, 2019
Sam Park
regular trail 9.7mi