Arabia Mountain: hiking the Mountain View Trail
Hike the Arabia Mountain View Trail over vast granite expanses to a glassy, reflective lake and through a grassy meadow just outside of Atlanta.
Arabia Mountain offers some of the best hiking, cycling and running trails near Atlanta. And despite the mountain’s proximity to the city, Arabia’s landscape and ecosystems are seemingly worlds away: rare, fragile plant life punctuates the mountain’s broad expanses of exposed, cratered granite.
One of the newest trails in Arabia Mountain’s extensive hiking, biking and walking trail network, the Mountain View Trail explores a stunning diversity of landscapes on the mountain’s lower elevations. The trail hikes the base of Arabia Mountain and loops through a forest to catch reflective Arabia views from a nearby lake. The artfully constructed trail treks over a wide variety of terrain, from shady forest to lakeside shore, massive fields of wide-open rock, and to golden, grassy meadow.
It’s not a terribly long or difficult trail, but the Arabia Mountain View Trail does require some careful wayfinding. The blue-blazed trail is blazed on trees and rock outcrops and requires some careful blaze sleuthing, patience and occasional backtracking to remain on the trail. But the trail’s glassy pond views and adventurous exploration on the lesser-traveled, lower elevations of Arabia Mountain make the wayfinding effort worthwhile.
Arabia Mountain View Trail: the hike
The Arabia Mountain View Trail departs the same trailhead as the Arabia Mountain Top Trail (view maps and driving directions), hiking east from the trailhead. The trail follows large, cemented rock cairns over massive expanses of exposed granite, meandering around pockets and pools of vegetation on the rock. Rare plant life thrives at Arabia Mountain, so watch where you step: avoid plants or the sandy depressions on the trail.
At .3 mile, the Mountain Top Trail veers left to crest Arabia Mountain. This hike on the Mountain View Trail veers right at .3 miles, trailing northeast and following blue trail blazes on trees and rock. The trail treks Arabia Mountain’s lower elevations, passing pitted pockets in the granite where plants and wind-swept trees cling to the angled rock.
The trail dives into the woods at .5 miles, hiking a short trek under a forest canopy before re-emerging onto Arabia Mountain’s angled expanse at .6 mile. The trail follows the contours of the lake’s shore, catching intermittent views of the lake’s glassy surface on trail right.
The Mountain View Trail arcs southbound at 1 mile, diving back into the shade of the forest and circling the lake. The trail meets an old road bed at 1.4 miles, turning right to follow the road westbound. The trail reaches an abandoned building at 1.55 miles, grabbing views of Arabia Mountain’s reflections on the lake’s surface.
The trail continues hiking westbound along the lake’s shore before turning left at 1.65 miles, hiking south. Reaching an open expanse of granite at 1.7 miles, the trail veers to the right, following blue blazes emblazoned on the granite. The Arabia Mountain View Trail rolls elevation through a grassy cleared meadow at 1.9 miles, the meadow’s windswept golden and green hues contrasting with the blue sky and wispy clouds overhead.
The trail enters and then exits tree cover once again before emerging onto open granite, reaching the rock-cairn-blazed Arabia Mountain Trail at 2.05 miles. This hike turns left here, retracing the trail westbound to return to the trailhead and parking area and completing at 2.3 miles.
Have energy and daylight left? If you haven’t summited Arabia Mountain, it’s worth the hike! At 2.05 miles, turn right on the Arabia Mountain trail to follow the stacked stone cairns to the mountain’s summit for some incredible views. Check out our trail review of the Arabia Mountain Top Trail for more info, photos and maps.
Arabia Mountain View Trail: navigation
With trail blazes scattered on trees and open rock, the Arabia Mountain View Trail can be a tricky one to follow. We suggest running GPS to help with wayfinding on the trail – either on your smartphone or on GPS device like the Garmin Oregon 600. The trail is blazed fairly regularly, so if you haven’t spotted a blaze in awhile, backtrack to the last-seen blaze on the trail and eagle-eye for the next blaze.
Arabia Mountain View Trail Map, Directions & Details
Free parking is available at this trailhead in the Arabia Mountain National Heritage Area.
33.659883, -84.123833 // N33 39.593 W84 07.430