Wildlife Viewing Guide

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Wildlife Viewing > Northwest Georgia Mountains > Sweetwater Creek State Conservation Park

Sweetwater Creek State Conservation Park

Great blue herons fish along the banks of Sweetwater Creek.  Photo by Richard T. Bryant.  Email: richard_T_Bryant@mindspring.comDescription: A wilderness experience only 15 miles from downtown Atlanta, here is an opportunity to see what the beautiful Piedmont of Georgia must have looked like 200 years ago before agriculture changed the landscape to what we see throughout much of North Georgia today. Hardwood forests of red oak, hickory, white oak, sweetgum, and yellow poplar dominate these beautiful rugged hills. Wildflowers abound. River cascades, rock outcrops, and steep cliffs are spectacular along Sweetwater Creek. Sweetwater Falls Overlook shouldn't be missed. This is also an interesting historic site, with ruins of a 19th century textile factory destroyed in the Civil War still evident.

Viewing Information: This wildlife oasis provides the best viewing opportunity anywhere near Atlanta. The 215-acre lake is home to hundreds of ducks and geese through the winter. Mallards, gadwalls, wood ducks, great blue herons and kingfishers are common sights. Beaver, fox, mink, and raccoon tracks are easy to find in the soft mud around beaver ponds. White-tailed deer are seen throughout the year in the food plots maintained for wildlife viewing and along the 6 miles of trails through the park.

Directions: From Atlanta, travel I-20 west to exit 12 (Thornton Rd./Camp Creek Pkwy.). Follow signs 2 miles to the park.

Management: Georgia DNR, Parks and Historic Sites Division, 770-732-5871 (Park Office)

Closest Town: Lithia Springs, GA

Site Notes: observation platforms, interpretive programs, 215-acre lake, bait and tackle shop, canoes, boat rentals

Additional Information: Stop at park office for a trail guide, then continue to trailhead parking area. Walking trails begin at this lot.

Entry FeeParkingRestroomsPicnicHikingBoat RampLarge BoatsSmall Boats

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