• Activities:

    Photography, Hiking

  • Skill Level:

    Intermediate

  • Season:

    Year Round

  • Trail Type:

    Loop

  • RT Distance:

    5.5 Miles

  • Elevation Gain:

    675 Feet

Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Forest
Scenic
Wildflowers

Bear Hair Gap Trail is a great mid-distance alpine trail in the beautiful mountains of Northern Georgia. The highlight of this trail is the great overlook of Lake Trahlyta and the surrounding mountains.

Vogel State Park is one of the many beautifully preserved wilderness parks of Northern Georgia.  With a stunning alpine lake and 17 miles of trails, you cannot go wrong.  The Bear Hair Trail is the perfect mid-distance option that will reward you with both great views of the lake from a high vantage point and a great exercise through the beautiful forest.  

Starting just a stones throw away from the visitors center parking lot you will find the Backcountry trailhead.  This is the same trailhead you would take for the Coosa Backcountry Trail, and the two trails will fork after about half a mile.  That first half mile is a pretty good climb, with a series of steps to get you all warmed up.  To get on the Bear Hair Trail, just follow the sign at the fork, which clearly marks both trails.  Soon after the start of the trail, you leave the boundaries of Vogel State Park and enter the Chattahoochee National Forest.

The trail continues a moderately steep climb for the first 2 miles, and then tapers into a more gradual ascent as you reach one of the lower ridges of Blood Mountain.  Around that 2 mile point, you will see a sign for the Vogel Overlook.  Even if you are tired at this point, definitely take the short .2 mile detour to get the best view of the hike, and one of the few alpine lake views in Georgia.  From a thousand feet above, you will see the shimmer of the sunlight on Lake Trahlyta, surrounded by equally beautiful rolling mountains.  This is the perfect spot to take a break, grab a snack, and brace yourself for the hike down.  

Now that all of the heavy lifting is behind you, you will navigate back to the main trail and continue to your left (assuming you were going counter-clockwise).  This will take you down a slightly less steep path than the one you came up, albeit a bit longer in distance.  The descent will take you besides and eventually across charming little streams, which make waterproof boots a really good idea.  You will know you are back in Vogel State Park territory once you pass the campground and a couple group shelters.

Don't think you are tired enough? Check out the mile-long stroll around Lake Trahlyta. 

Pack List

  • Hiking Boots
  • Water
  • Snacks
  • Daypack
  • Camera
  • Hiking Poles (optional)
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Reviews

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I found the Bear Hair Gap trail to be a really scenic & pretty trail. There aren't any sweeping views (though the Vogel overlook is pretty cool), but the creek crossings & not-too-challenging terrain makes this hike a worthwhile few hours!

5 months ago
5 months ago

Christian Murillo Explorer

My love for natural landscape photography is what first got me outside. Now, I can hardly stay indoors. My sense of adventure has led me to travel all over the US (mostly in the SE), and also drove me to complete a +42,000 mile trip around the world.

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