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Iron Hill Loop Trail at Red Top Mountain State Park

Hike the Iron Hill Loop Trail at Red Top Mountain State Park, just north of Atlanta. The is the perfect hike for taking in North Georgia’s fall colors.

Take this beautiful hike through a serene Georgia forest and along the banks of Lake Allatoona. The Iron Hill Trail is just a short drive from Atlanta in Acworth / Cartersville.

The 3.9 mile Iron Hill Loop Trail is one of my favorite fall hikes. I recommend hiking here in November hike when the weather begins getting cooler. You may even meet a deer or two on the trail!

Red Top Mountain State Park Hiking Trail

Hiking the Iron Hill Loop Trail

Red Top Mountain was once an iron mining area in the mid 1800’s, and that’s the area that the Iron Hill Loop Trail hike takes you through.

The nearly 4-mile Iron Hill Trail is a gravel-surfaced trail, though you can’t tell that in the fall with all the leaves covering the trail.

The Iron Hill Loop trailhead begins at a parking lot a little ways past the state park’s Visitors Center on the right. Since the trail is a loop, you can start either left or right. We started by turning left, following the trail clockwise.

As the trail moves through the forest, you can see the leaves changing color.

Iron Hill Loop Trail

At about 0.5 miles, the trail crosses a service road. This is where we began to notice that not all of their trail signs are completely clear, with their arrow signs pointing directly up the middle of two trails.

Iron Hill Loop Trail

Stick to the trail with the blue trail markings on the trees (here, the left fork), and you’ll be fine.

It’s not long before the trail comes to the lake. The trail doesn’t directly connect to the beach, so you’ll have to find a cut through if you want to walk along the beach. If you choose to walk along the sandy shore, don’t go too far as you’ll have to backtrack to actually get back on to the Iron Hill Loop Trail.

Iron Hill Loop Trail

After about 1.5 miles into our hike, we came across three deer directly in our path. Apparently, Red Top Mountain State Park has a huge deer population. These deer didn’t even bat an eye at us, just calmly crossed the trail and stayed not too far off on the hilltop.

Deer on Iron Hill Loop Trail, Red Top Mountain State Park, Cartersville, Acworth, Georgia

The trail has plenty of benches and picnic tables dispersed throughout so you can take a break and take in the picturesque views. As you hike, you’ll be able to get glimpses of the shimmering lake waters through the autumn trees.

Iron Hill Loop Trail

Wooden bridges span streams and flood zone areas on the last half of the hike, making for a pretty autumn picture.

Iron Hill Loop Trail

The second bridge is another area with a confusingly-placed arrow sign. As before, keep to the left to follow the trail, so that you can cross over the cute bridge.

Iron Hill Loop Trail

You’ll pass by an obstacle course wall and cross over a couple more bridges before the loop trail connects back together for a 3.9 mile hike.

Hiking Essentials

Come prepared for your hike by making sure you pack the essentials. Check out this must-have hiking gear before you set off on the trails:

Iron Hill Loop Trail Info

Hike length: 3.9 miles

Difficulty: Moderate

Is it pet-friendly?: Yes, leashed dogs are allowed on this trail.

Location: Iron Hill Trail Parking Lot, Red Top Mountain Rd SE, Acworth, GA 30102

Parking: Parking is available at the Iron Hill Trail Parking Lot inside Red Top Mountain State Park. $5 fee.

Fees: $5 parking fee per vehicle.

Hours: The trail is open from 7 a.m. to dark.

Accessibility: The Iron Hill Loop Trail is a graveled tail that is accessible to both hikers and bikers.

Red Top Mountain State Park

Red Top Mountain State Park is located on beautiful Lake Allatoona. Visitors can boat, swim, camp, bike, hike, and more in the 1,776 acre Georgia State Park. Red Top Mountain has 15 miles of hiking trails through the forest and along the lake’s beaches.

Nearby Attractions

After your hike, check out these other great things to do near Red Top Mountain State Park.


Ready to visit Atlanta, Georgia? Plan your trip with these tips.

  • Get Familiar With the City: Check out my Ultimate Guide to Atlanta to help plan your trip!
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  • Save on Attractions: Save 46% on admission to Atlanta’s top attractions using the Atlanta CityPASS.

Cheers!

Paige

Georgia Hikes: Iron Hill Loop Trail

Have you hiked the Iron Hill Loop Trail at Red Top Mountain State Park in the fall? Let me know in the comments! 

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