Hike Inn Trail: hiking Amicalola Falls to the Len Foote Hike Inn

Hike Inn Trail: Amicalola Falls to the Len Foote Hike Inn

Catch stunning views on the Hike Inn Trail, a 10-mile roundtrip from Amicalola Falls to the eco-friendly Len Foote Hike Inn near Springer Mountain.

trail info

9.9 miles
(round trip)
moderate
Dog-
friendly

LOCATION:Chattahoochee National Forest near Ellijay, Georgia (maps & directions)

GEAR: Osprey Stratos 24 Backpack w/ our favorite hiking gear list and Canon 6D Camera

OFFICIAL MAP: Nat Geo 777 Trails Illustrated Map

Nestled near the southern end of the Appalachian Trail at Springer Mountain, the Len Foote Hike Inn is a small, eco-friendly, rustic-modern inn that’s accessible only via hike. It’s one of our all-time favorite experiences in Georgia, capturing the adventure of backpacking with hot showers, fantastic hot meals, comfy beds and the company of like-minded adventurers that love to swap stories about travel and trails. And sunrises from the Hike Inn are cause for a ceremony: they’re simply spectacular.

Catch gorgeous sunsets at the Len Foote Hike Inn in Georgia, an eco-friendly inn accessbible only via hike

The Hike Inn Trail treks to the lodge from the nearby Amicalola Falls State Park, traveling just under 5 miles, each way, dipping through valleys, rolling across ridges and ducking through green, fern-filled creek valleys. The trail makes an excellent 10-mile day hike if you’re up for it – but an overnight at the Hike Inn is like no other. Check out our full Len Foote Hike Inn review for our tips about staying at the inn. And be sure to make reservations: Len Foote is often booked weeks in advance.

Hike the Hike Inn Trail from Amicalola Falls to the Len Foote Hike Inn in Georgia

The Hike Inn Trail

The Hike Inn Trail departs from a trailhead near the crest of Amicalola Falls (view maps and driving directions). The trail shares its initial stretch with the Appalachian Approach Trail, an 8-mile access trail to the southernmost blaze of the Appalachian Trail in Georgia at Springer Mountain.

Note: if you haven’t hiked Amicalola Falls, allow time for a hike at this stunning waterfall before departing for the Hike Inn. Or, hike to the Hike Inn trailhead from the Amicalola Falls visitor center, following the Amicalola Falls Loop to add extra mileage and some incredible views to this hike.

Georgia's Hike Inn Trail: hike from Amicalola Falls to a backcountry, eco-friendly lodge accessed only by hike

The hike swings right at .35 mile, departing the AT Approach Trail, following green trail blazes and climbing elevation through a series of switchbacks. The trail veers east through a dense forest of young tulip trees and towering oak. The hike climbs steadily to a small knob at .8 mile, catching views of nearby rolling southern Appalachian mountains through the treeline.

Hike Inn Trail: catch stunning views from the top of Amicalola Falls before hiking to the Len Foote Hike Inn in North Georgia

The trail spans a stretch of sandy, moss-covered forest floor, meeting a massive, old-growth tulip tree at 1.6 miles. The tree’s large trunk soars into the sky, dwarfing the surrounding trees and standing stately in this otherwise young, spindly forest. Reaching a small summit at 2.1 miles, the Hike Inn Trail begins a descent into a thick swath of mountain laurel and rhododendron, a broad ridge visible ahead through the forest canopy.

Hike Inn Trail: Amicalola Falls to the Len Foote Hike Inn in North Georgia

The hike crosses a wooden bridge at 2.7 miles, spanning a trickling creek speckled with moss-covered rocks. The trail crosses the creek once again, this time via stepping stones, before climbing through a dense thicket of mountain laurel. The hike rolls elevation, fording several more creek crossings before climbing to an overlook at 4 miles. Departing the overlook, the trail runs east to cross a summit before dipping into another rhododendron-filled stream valley, crossing Cochran’s Creek via a wooden bridge at 4.6 miles.

The hike meanders through a wet, marshy valley, crossing wooden planks and bridges before making the final stretch to the inn. The Hike Inn Trail reaches the rustic, gray-clad lodge at 4.9 miles.

Hike to Georgia's Len Foote Hike Inn, an eco-friendly lodge accessed only by hike from Amicalola Falls or Springer Mountain

Staying the night? Check in and enjoy the experience at this unique inn, and be sure to take the nightly tour for an introduction to the inn’s many LEED-certified eco-friendly features. Check out our Len Foote Hike Inn review for more tips and details from our stays at the inn. And be sure to join your fellow hikers, hot coffee in hand, for sunrise – it’s like no other.

(Note: while this trail is dog-friendly, the Inn is not.)

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Hike Inn Trail - Amicalola Falls to the Len Foote Hike Inn Map, Directions & Details

Hike Inn Trail - Amicalola Falls to the Len Foote Hike Inn Map
Hike Inn Trail - Amicalola Falls to the Len Foote Hike Inn Map
This map is not a substitute for official trail maps or topographic maps.

Driving Directions


Parking

$5, or included with a Georgia State Parks annual pass.

GPS Coordinates

34.566933, -84.243583     //     N34 34.016 W84 14.615

Elevation Profile

Hike Inn Trail - Elevation Profile
Leave No Trace: Atlanta Trails is an official Leave No Trace partner

Please Remember

Always leave no trace, tell someone where you're going, pack safety and wayfinding essentials, don't rely on a mobile phone to find your way, and follow these trail etiquette tips.

 
Eric Champlin is a writer and photographer who loves to hike, run, backpack, kayak and cycle the southeast. He’s the editor and founder of Atlanta Trails and Asheville Trails, online magazines that cover the South’s best outdoor adventures. His mission? To inspire others to get fit outdoors and explore the South’s incredible scenic beauty.