Hike Panola Mountain at twilight. Panola Mountain's summit is off limits to the public, due to the vast array of rare and fragile plants that cover the mountain's surface. Get an exclusive glimpse of the mountain at twilight on a guided hike, exploring Panola Mountain as the moon rises. Check the park's schedule for more details; reservations required.
Hunt for treasure. The Arabia Mountain Geo-Path is a widespread network of geocaches spread along the 30-mile Arabia Mountain PATH trail. Find one of 60 geocaches using a handheld GPS or smartphone app, and discover the small treasures hidden inside. Geocaching, a fun family activity, is not only about the thrill of discovery and joy of the hunt; it's also the unique places you'll explore while hunting each cache.
Climb a tree. Join Tree Top Excursions at Panola Mountain State Park to climb high into a tree canopy, aided by ropes and a harness. Learn the basics of climbing and catch some great views while climbing a 100-foot tree named "Naomi Ruth."
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Run a mile. Or five. The paved Panola Mountain PATH trail curves and climbs through Panola Mountain State Park. Run the popular 5-mile loop through a pine forest and beside wide rock outcrops, over a long, curved boardwalk and over a causeway at Alexander Lake. You'll even run through a historic livestock barn, catching a brief dose of shade. The trail is hilly, challenging and scenic— and an overall awesome run.
Improve your archery skills, or learn bow basics. Hone your accuracy and aim at the Panola State Park archery range with the guidance of a certified instructor. Beginner, intermediate and advanced classes are available and equipment is included. Then test your skills on one of two archery ranges, a static range and a 3-D trail with realistic targets.
Explore more. Pitch a tent, and stay the night: hike a half mile into one of five primitive campsites at Panola Mountain State Park. Visit AWARE, the Atlanta Wild Animal Rescue Effort, near the base of Arabia Mountain to learn about wild animal rehabilitation and habitat preservation on a tour (1 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday, weather permitting). Check out the Arabia Mountain NHA events calendar for even more ideas for outdoor fun.
Hike these 5 beginner-friendly waterfall trails in North Georgia. Video produced by Fiza Pirani/AJC.