Sweetwater Creek Red And White Double Loop Sweetwater Creek State Park, GA
miles
LENGTH 3 MILES
DIFFICULTY 4.1 Easy
DURATION 1-2 hours
ELEVATION GAIN
380
feet
TRAIL TYPE
Double
Loop
Sweetwater Creek Red And White Double Loop

This scenic hike just outside the Atlanta perimeter follows Sweetwater Creek, beautiful anytime of the year and quite impressive after heavy rainfall. With several trail options and an information rich and environmentally sensitive Visitor Center, Sweetwater Creek State Park is a perfect outing for family or hikers seeking a short hike.

The Red trail begins next to the Visitor Center, which has restrooms and vending machines. Although the parking lot is a decent size, it fills up fast on weekends. Head down the trail passing split off for the Yellow trail until you drop down next to Sweetwater Creek. Continue to the right following the red trail to the New Manchester Mill ruins.

Shortly afterwards, a side trail to the left will take you on a pleasant detour closer along the river and the increasing rapids. Just after this are the Mill ruins and the first intersection with the White trail. To make a shorter trip, take the White trail heading off to the right from here, which will take to back to the Visitor Center. For the longer double loop hike, continue on past the two viewing platforms and take the steps down to the base of ruins. A fence surrounds the Mill so inquire about the guided tours if you want to explore further.

From here, the Red trail follows closely with the water’s edge. This section is by far the most difficult part, becoming very rocky with short steep inclines and declines. At times it won’t feel like a maintained path at all, but the occasional red blaze will confirm it is. Just after 1 mile, a set of steps will lead up to the top of a bluff overlooking “the falls”, more a series of rapids than a waterfall. Immediately after this, the Red trail will end at the final intersection with the White trail. Stay to the right to make the double loop back to the Visitor Center.

Heading uphill and above the creek, the White trail is easily followed and generously blazed. Especially during winter, the soothing sounds of the rapids are never out of earshot. Once you arrive back at the first intersection with the Red trail at the Mill, continue to follow the white blazes. This last section of trail is easy, meandering between 900 and 950 feet in elevation, crossing a couple small streams, and arriving at the back of the Visitor Center.

Also check out the other trails Sweetwater Creek State Park has to offer: Red and White Loop Yellow Loop Yellow and Orange Double Loop

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Elevation Map Length (miles) by Elevation (feet)
Terrain Map Click to control map
Details
length3 miles
difficulty4.1 Easy
duration1 - 2 hours
trail typeDouble Loop
blazeRed and White
elevation gain380 ft.
state Georgia 
park/forestSweetwater Creek State Park
ranger districtSweetwater Creek State Park
1750 Mount Vernon Road
Lithia Springs, GA 30122
770-732-5871
parking fee$5/Day, $50 Annual Pass
trailhead coordinates 33.753443, -84.628394 (Degree Decimal, DegDec)
N 33°45.21, W 84°37.7 (Degree Minutes, MinDec)
N 33°45'12'', N 33°45'12'' (Degree Minutes Seconds, DMS)
Trailhead Directions
33.753443, -84.628394 (Degree Decimal, DegDec)
N 33°45.21, W 84°37.7 most GPS units use this one
N 33°45'12'', N 33°45'12'' (Degree Minutes Seconds, DMS)
Google Map It
Once in the park, drive straight until you enter the parking lot at the end of the road. The Visitor's Center is to the right of the parking lot. All trails start next to the Visitor's Center.
Notes
Sections of the red trail are very rocky and slick when wet.
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Reviews / Comments
Average Review Rating
4 (1)
hikethesouth-8 months ago
Ruins, Rapids and Crowds
There's plenty to love about this park and this short double loop is no exception. Beyond the mill ruins are numerous views along the rapids of Sweetwater Creek. Go on a weekday if possible. This park gets crowded fast.
Easy | Hiked Spring 2013
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