“The run from Unicoi State Park to the alpine village of Helen, GA. This is a great family run!”
— Henry Little
Birding · Fall Colors · River/Creek · Spring · Wildflowers · Wildlife
This trail starts just east of the bottom of Unicoi Lake and winds along Smith Creek, with several crossings, and eventually leads to the north part of Helen, GA on White Strausse (Street), which is right beside a very nice park. From here, downtown Helen can easily be accessed.
The initial trail is mostly a descent, but it also has a decent climb about 1.5 miles in. Expect to see rhododendron, mountain laurel, ferns, wildflowers and hardwoods as well as many birds.
While mostly through woods, there are two sections that pass through open clearings. The run, one-way, is moderate. With much encouragement, my 4 1/2 year old daughter was able to complete the trail without being carried and in under 1.5 hours. If a runner plans to return to the State Park via this trail (which I did, but did not record), this difficulty would become intermediate due to the increased length.
Flora & Fauna
Rhododendron, mountain laurel, ferns, wildflowers and hardwoods.