Blood Mountain: Drive to Trailhead & Trail Guide

Drive Guide - Blood Mountain (W4G/NG-004)

  • Duration: 1:35 (based on experience)
  • Google Maps URL from Ashford Dunwoody Rd and I-285 at 33.91998, -84.33898: http://goo.gl/maps/ESfYO
  • Seasonal/Limited Access: All seasons, all weather roads.
  • Directions:
    • N on GA-400 from I-285 for 47 miles
    • L on US-19 N and follow for 26.2
    • 0.5 past Walasi-Yi, L into Byron Herbert Reece Memorial Parking area (38 spaces)
      • Parking demand may exceed spaces. At 1:30 PM on a Saturday in 2013, there were 3 spaces available when I arrived; one car was parked illegally – evidence that the lot had been full earlier.
      • Parking way exceeded capacity (and there were people waiting in line) on Saturday, October 4, 2014 at 12:30 PM.
  • Food
    • Last McDonalds: 35 Mountain Dr, Dahlonega GA (you go right past it)
    • Penultimate McDonalds: GA-400 at GA-53 (38 miles north of I-285)
    • Dinner: Smokin’ Gold Barbecue - 59 East Main St, Dahlonega, GA.

Trail Guide

  • Duration: 2.2 miles. 1:55 up; 1:30 down; (1:35 from summit to Walasi-Yi)
  • Navigation
    • Follow obvious trail from parking area 0.7 miles (and 400’ up)
    • R on AT and follow blazes for 1.5
    • Water: If you need water, there is a spigot under the bay window on the right side (facing the front door) of Walasi-Yi. The outfitter permits hiker use.
  • Trailhead altitude: 3025’
  • Summit altitude: 4460’
  • GPS tracks/waypoints:
    • Trailhead: 34.74212, -83.92272
    • Summit: 34.7398, -83.937

Summit Guide

  • Hang antenna from tree: Not on top of the summit; possible within activation zone.
  • Space to guy mast: Not on top of the summit; possible within activation zone.
  • Cell coverage:
    • 2013: Verizon SMS worked on 3 of 4 tries; AT&T SMS didn’t work on 2 of 2 despite 2-3 bars; AT&T data didn’t work; APRS messaging worked well
    • 2014: Verizon SMS worked quickly on 2 of 2 uses
    • KI4SVM reported AT&T, Verizon, and APRS success
  • Unique features:
    • Old AT shelter at summit
    • Walasi-Yi center near trailhead sells provisions
    • The area is very popular. Don’t expect privacy.

Plan-B Candidates

  • Levelland Mountain - Opposite direction on AT at Walasi-Yi
  • Akin Mtn