Let's kickstart this weekend of the Great Outdoors with one of our lovely Toccoa Heights cabins, The Rivers Edge.
This cabin has direct access to the Toccoa River, providing tons of things to do for the adventurists' heart; activities ranging from tubing - be it launching down river or tying off at the bank, fishing - privately with our treasured Joe DiPietro or from the edge, and plenty of room for running or playing. This home is pet friendly, having an open area for dogs to run and explore. Situated on a hillside featuring panoramic Toccoa River views and the Indigenous Cherokee Fish Weir, the promise of a true river escape awaits. If privacy and solitude are needed for unplugging from the city life, the large expanse of the three floors will enable you to get away from the action in order to relax your mind.
The trail's bed is sandy as it makes a gentle descent to the river, meandering through a mixed forest of mountain laurel, pine, and deciduous trees.
The swinging bridge is a popular destination for day-hikers, Benton MacKaye Trail through-hikers, and paddlers making their journey down the Toccoa River Canoe Trail. This bridge is the longest swinging bridge east of the Mississippi River at 270 feet in length. It sways with every step, hence its name, making the crossing both fun and slightly challenging. A plaque on the bridge commemorates its origin, built in 1977 by the USDA Forest Service with the cooperation of the Georgia Appalachian Trail Club. It's beautiful, rustic, and offers great mid-river views.
Named for Benton MacKaye, the Massachusetts forester/regional planner who proposed the Appalachian Trail, this hiking trail near Blue Ridge, GA features remarkable changes in terrain and too many modern intrusions: The Appalachian Trail, Springer Mountain, Chester Creek, Three Forks, America’s Footpath, and Duncan Ridge Trail. The trail levels at .25 mile, reaching the banks of the Toccoa River. The lengthy bridge spans the river ahead, and the hike begins to cross, making a suspended trek across the river.
The hike reaches the end of the swinging bridge, grabbing firm footing on the non-swaying ground. A side trail departs the Benton MacKaye Trail to the left, descending a rocky outcrop to a small, cascading waterfall.
The waterfall and the surrounding river plain make a great place to picnic mid-hike, shaded by a sweet-smelling grove of hemlock trees.
Van Zandt's Grocery & Grill
Known for being the local meet up spot for all adventurists - motorcyclists, hikers, explorers, and even the on-looking passerby - Van Zandt's Grocery & Grill has a wide selection of food, small item groceries, and locally crafted souvenirs. The grill serves breakfast from 7am to 11am - with mouth-watering items like oversized pancakes, french toach, traditional breakfast platters, biscuit and gravy, and even grit bowls. Following with Lunch from 11am to 3pm - serving sandwiches like pulled pork, BLT, and 1/2 lb burgers; soups like Brunswick Stew and Chili with cornbread.
And if their grill items or that extra roll of emergency toilet paper weren't enough reasons to make you stop in, they also offer tubing and kayaking services for that spontaneous adventure the family didn't know they needed. Van Zandt's is family-owned, and locally operated. Selling souvenirs crafted right here in Blue Ridge, be sure to take a piece of the mountains home with you - be it a t-shirt, small batch soy candles from Boomer Life Candle Co., or other trinkets - Van Zandt's definitely has you covered.
North GA Geocaching
In a nutshell, geocaching is basically following GPS coordinate clues to find a cache — aka a hidden prize! All you need are coordinates or clues, a smartphone or GPS device to navigate, and an appetite for outdoor adventures. It costs nothing but time and potentially a dollar toy or trinket to trade for your cache prize. So…geocaching is like modern treasure hunting where you value the experience more than the material reward. And it’s open to everyone!
Common Types of Caches
Traditional Cache — use direct coordinates to find a container with a prize and logbook
Mystery/Puzzle Cache — solve puzzles to find the correct coordinates that lead to a prize
Multi-cache — follow clues at each location until you reach your final destination
Earth Cache — reach a special geological location that educates about the area
Event Cache — join fellow geocachers on a hunt to find the geocaching event location
How to Geocache
1.) Visit geocaching.com
2.) Sign up for a free account
3.) Enter 30513 for Blue Ridge GA
4.) Set your radius
5.) Find YOUR cache!