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by Page Plager



Hit the ground running at these great Atlanta places to jog in the fall.

Fall's cool, crisp temperatures make the season prime time for all sorts of outdoor adventuring. Couple the idyllic weather with the colorful, soft mosaic of the changing foliage and you've got the stuff of dreams -- especially for trail runners.

In and around Atlanta, there are numerous trails perfect for viewing beautiful fall foliage in the already stunning scenery. Riverside jaunts, treks along ponds and even urban in-town runs all get a boost from the seasonal colors this time of year, and the options run the gamut of skill levels. Here are seven of the best places to run when the leaves start falling.

1. Sweetwater Creek Trails

Sweetwater Creek has a variety of trails for runners to enjoy along the water, across meadows, and through forests. (Alexa Lampasona)

Sweetwater Creek State Park, which is a quick 20 minutes or so from downtown, boasts three history-rich trails, and each of them is exceedingly gorgeous in the fall. The shortest is the beginner-friendly Red Trail, which half a mile in meets the ruins of the five-story New Manchester Mill, part of a Mid mill town. Experienced runners and hikers can hit the White Trail, a 5.2-mile loop that passes several stream covers and leads upstream to Jack's Lake. The trail then passes through a farming community that has plenty of pretty, open meadows. The Yellow Trail, accessible where the Red Trail meets Sweetwater Creek, is a moderate 3.4-miler. Take the wooden footbridge across the water and find a challenging ascent up the ridge and through stunning hardwood forests on the left. The south side of this trail is marked by a massive rock overhang that archeologists believe was used for thousands of years as shelter by Native Americans.

2. Atlanta BeltLine Northside Trail

While it's right downtown, the Atlanta Beltline Northside Trail makes runners feel far removed from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. (Nate Shivar)

The April 2010 opening of this mile-long trail around the Collier Hills neighborhood marked the first BeltLine trail on the north side of the city. Its best feature is easily its stretch through Tanyard Creek Park, which is full of lush greenery and includes passage through a wooden bridge beneath the railroad line. Enter on Collier Road between Peachtree Street and Northside Drive; there's a parking lot across from Over brook Drive that leads to a public entrance.

3. Atlanta BeltLine Eastside Trail

This two-mile, paved, urban trail doubles as a sightseeing tour of some of the city's coolest attractions. It encompasses three neighborhoods -- Midtown, Inman Park, and the Old Fourth Ward -- and starts at 10th Street and Monroe Drive by the iconic Piedmont Park and ends at Irwin Street near DeKalb Avenue. Sporadic murals and commissioned sculptures along the entire route offer museum-worthy sights. You can hop off at the Historic Fourth Ward Skatepark to watch skaters dominate the ramps and bowls or exit the trail at North Avenue for a break at Ponce City Market. There, you can shop and eat, or, at its rooftop Skyline Park, play games, breeze down the slide or get a lift on the Hedge Tower. This trail is easily the most popular of the BeltLine offerings, and it's poised to be an even bigger hit once construction through Kirkwood Avenue in Reynoldstown is completed.

4. Cochran Shoals

Soak in fantastic views of the Chattahoochee River along the Cochran Shoals 5K loop. (Alan Cressler)

If you're a long-distance runner who favors flat trails, but who doesn't want to sacrifice exciting terrain and interesting views, you'll appreciate the 5K loop at Cochran Shoals. Not only do you run alongside the Chattahoochee River, but you get to run through a well-groomed marsh area, too. Advanced runners can opt to extend their run to 8.5 miles by adding the Sope Creek Trail, a more technical trail full of tricky roots and rocks that end at a serene pond.

5. Tribble Mill Park

Great for new runners, Tribble Mill Park has a mix of paved and dirt trails. (Alan Cressler)

A short, fully paved 2.8-mile path, this Gwinnett County spot is ideal for new runners. The expansive playground and multiple pavilions mean families will love it, too. Tree-lined Ozora Lake, around which the trail wraps, is especially picturesque during fall -- and that's a sight anyone will enjoy. Thrill seekers can still get a quick rush, too: There are a few dirt side trails leading into the woods that will add some length onto your run.

6. East Palisades Trail

Run through a bamboo forest on this great 4-mile route along the East Palisades trail. (Alan Cressler)

Let rushing water and the knocking of towering bamboo stalks be the soundtrack to your run on this in-town Chattahoochee River trail. Start the 4-mile route by crossing a wooden bridge over Charlie's Trapping Creek before heading north to a bluff overlooking the river. Below, you'll likely catch kayakers traversing the minefield of angular rock slabs jutting out from the rapids. A descent toward Cabin Creek and a north turn across an old stone bridge will ultimately land you smack dab among towering 30-foot bamboo stalks that, with enough wind, will add a perpetual percussive element to your run. From there, go down the bluff again, run the switchbacks south of Cabin Creek and a travel along a gravel path to the finale.

7. Piedmont Park

Piedmont Park is a long time staple of Atlanta, but that doesn't make the 4-mile run any less special. Head out from the 10th Street entrance across from Argonne Avenue and run north into the park. You will pass the sports fields, tracks, and the Atlanta Botanical Garden, which requires a ticket to enter but still affords a peek at its gorgeous exhibits from the outside. A more recent addition, the Legacy Fountain, is up next and is followed by two off-leash dog parks on either side, as well as an unpaved Wetlands Trail. You'll spot the pool, circle Lake Clara Meer, loop around folks relaxing or flying kites on the meadow, then ascend to run alongside 10th Street to the finish. The skyline views you get throughout are simply unbeatable.

Originally written by RootsRated for Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau.



Page Plager and Blaise Bugajski
Property SELLutions
Ph: 770-639-SOLD

Contact us today if you are looking to buy or sell a home in the Greater Atlanta, Georgia area - including North Fulton, Forsyth County, Gwinnett County, Cobb County or Dekalb County.

Image courtesy of Unsplash/
















by Page Plager


Feed your soul with an outdoors adventure in and around Atlanta.

The crispness of fall comes as a welcome relief to the summer heat in Atlanta. Autumn is a time when the weather is perfectly moderate and the air feels amazingly fresh in this city. Take advantage of the break from Georgia's intense temps and get outside -- and often. Here are seven great ways to have fun outdoors in Atlanta and nearby while the forecasts are nothing but calm and cool.

1. Hike Stone Mountain.

Amazing views from the summit of Stone Mountain make this trek worth the effort. (Eric Epps)

The massive carved monadnock and the 3,200 acres around it remain one of Georgia's most popular outdoor attractions. Most locals remember riding the cable car as a kid and can name at least a couple songs in the soundtrack to the longstanding nighttime laser show at Stone Mountain Park. Climbing up the mountain itself is basically a rite of passage. There are six trails of varying difficulties and lengths to get you to there. On the 2-mile Songbird Habitat Trail, you'll hear the chirping of Eastern Bluebirds and Northern Cardinals. The shorter Nature Garden Trail is especially scenic in the fall and connects to the 5-mile Cherokee Trail, the longest of the Stone Mountain paths.

2. Traverse the Chattahoochee River.


Catch the changing fall colors from a different perspective as you paddle down the Chattahoochee River. (Alan Cressler)

There are a few ways to run the length of the Chattahoochee River and several spots to enter. Start around Azalea Park in Roswell where you can rent a kayak, stand-up paddleboard or canoe for your adventure. It’s important to note that there are rambunctious stretches with Class I and Class II rapids along the route, but most of the river is calm and allows for long looks at the changing colors of the landscape around you.

3. Follow the Silver Comet Trail.

Run, bike or hike your way along the Silver Comet Trail. (Flickr user 7263255)

Built on abandoned railroad lines, the fully paved Silver Comet Trail clocks in at a whopping 61.5 miles and runs from Smyrna to the Alabama state line. This is a peaceful trek, and the trail passes over creeks, through small towns, and by a restored railroad depot. The trail is for non-motorized activities and is great for anything from zooming on a Rollerblade to biking, running or walking. Around the Dallas area, there are even farms that rent their horses for riding on the grassy stretch alongside the trail.

4. Gauge your hiking guts at Tallulah Gorge.

The Sliding Rock Trail at Tallulah Gorge State Park will even have the hearts of thrill seekers pumping. (Alexa Lampasona)

Within two hours of the city is a hike that is absolutely not for the faint of heart: the Sliding Rock Trail at Tallulah Gorge State Park. The Tallulah Gorge in northern Georgia has plenty of offerings for folks of all levels, but thrill-seeking hikers will go nuts for the strenuous 3.4-mile Sliding Rock Trail challenge. In fact, you have to take a safety class before you get a pass to head out on it. To start, you must brace yourself along a skinny, swaying suspension bridge, then descend more than 600 stairs to the gorge floor 1,000 feet below. The trail isn't clearly defined, which leaves a bit of room for interpretation, but there’s no doubt you'll crawl through slippery, rocky waters, then climb over boulders and through crevices along the way. You know you've succeeded in conquering the trail once you reach the giant sliding rock.

5. Explore the Atlanta BeltLine.

The popular Atlanta BeltLine is a great way to get outside and enjoy the cool air of fall. (Daniel Lobo)

The Atlanta BeltLine is a project that is still in the works -- it ultimately will hit 33 miles and link 45 in-town neighborhoods -- but there already are four fully accessible trails perfect for running, walking or biking. The Eastside Trail is hands-down the most popular and runs from Piedmont Park to Inman Park and Old Fourth Ward. If you're looking to get the most fall colors on the BeltLine, though, try the Northside Trail through Tanyard Creek Park, which you can enter on Collier Road between Peachtree Street and Northside Drive. The trail was designed to preserve historic growth, so you'll see plenty of beautiful fall foliage along the way.

6. Hike the Cascade Springs Natural Reserve Trail.

A hike along the Cascade Springs Natural Reserve Trail makes you feel like you're miles away from the city when you actually haven’t even left it. The natural oasis of Cascade Springs on the city’s southwest side has 120 acres of green space and contains some of the oldest forests in Atlanta. In addition the area is home to the babbling Utoy creek, multiple small streams, impressive boulders and, ultimately, a rumbling waterfall surrounded by beautiful English ivy. Deer, birds and turtles populate the whole reserve and make this trail one of the most genuine and special outdoor trail experiences in Atlanta.

7. Spend an afternoon (outside the perimeter) at an Alpaca Farm. can you resist visiting an alpaca farm and petting this cute face? (Aden Davies)

The number of alpaca farms just outside the perimeter of Atlanta is a bit bewildering, but a lot of fun. Fewer than two hours away from downtown -- many closer to just one -- are havens for the fluffy llama-like creatures. At family-run businesses like Macon's Yellow Rock Farm and Southern Estate, visitors are encouraged to pet and even smooch the gentle, undeniably adorable alpacas.

Originally written by RootsRated for Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau.


Page Plager and Blaise Bugajski
Property SELLutions
Ph: 770-639-SOLD

Contact us today if you are looking to buy or sell a home in the Greater Atlanta, Georgia area - including North Fulton, Forsyth County, Gwinnett County, Cobb County or Dekalb County.

Image courtesy of Unsplash/



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Licensed in the State of Georgia

Page and Blaise Plager are the owner/agents of Property Sellutions.  We provide real estate services in Greater Atlanta, Georgia and the surrounding communities North Fulton, Forsyth County, Gwinnett County, Cobb County, Dekalb County,
Hall County, Glynn County, and The Golden Isles


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investment property, vacant land and lots for sale in the Great Atlanta, Georgia area.