Brasstown Bald


On those incredibly hot summer days, like we have experienced the past week or so, the outdoor life, sometimes, just doesn’t seem as appealing as sitting in your air conditioned front room. That’s understandable, but, dead wrong. The best things I know if you are looking to “beat the heat” is get in the water or head to the mountains.

One of the best places to go and a place that anyone can enjoy, from the most athletic hiker to the least athletic human being, is the very highest peak in the state of Georgia, Brasstown Bald . It’s located about 2.5 hours outside of Atlanta (and a scant twenty minutes outside of the popular city of Helen), and I wonder why more folks don’t find their way there.

If athletic activity scares you, you can drive to the parking lot (pay $3.00 8/2007 for parking) and then have a bus take up to the top and back down (bus fare an additional $2 8/2007). If you a midrange enthusiast, just do the 1.1 mile climb from the parking lot to the summit, known as the Brasstown Bald Trail . If you are ready for a real challenge you can hike the 4.5 mile Jack’s Knob Trail or, for my money the most challenging trail I know, the Arkaquah Trail at 5.5 miles (But remember that’s distance one way, and bring lots of water).

And you can beat the heat here, because, at an altitude of 4786 feet, the climate, according to the folks at the visitor’s center resembles more closely to San Diego than Atlanta. It the dead of winter, I was told, that even though the center never closes, the roads to get to into often ice over and close.

At the top of the mountain, there is a very nice visitor center, which charges no additional admission. They have a free movie detailing the climate of the area, some interactive features, including a animatronic of Arthur Woody, Georgia Pioneer, some insight as to the history of the area, and a brilliant observation deck. The views are incredible.

It’s a nice place to go and the weather is much better up there. I’m shocked as to how many people have been to Helen and how few have touched the top of Georgia. Maybe, this will help.



From Atlanta Zoo -...

I try to keep the things I point out in the city on the cheap side. Its not that I can't afford things, It simply that I'm frugal and I understand that many of the folks in the city need to stretch the dollar. But on occasion, I feel compelled to speak about great things in the city that cost a little bit of money. I wanted to speak about ZooAtlanta. I took far more photos on this one than I can easily place in a blog format, so I would remind you that you can click any photo and get through to my complete Zoo photo gallery with 80 pics.

Now, I've been to Zoo's in big cities like Chicago. I've been to Zoo's that are really famous like San Diego. I've been to the National Zoo in DC. All that being said, I had one of my most enjoyable times at the ZooAtlanta in Grant Park. They had all the standards, cool monkeys (my favorites), snakes, birds, and elephants. They had a pretty little petting zoo. They had a good amount of Kangaroos. What was really neat is that I went in the middle of the day during the heat and the animal were not just sleeping. The curators plan events to keep the animals active to make it a more pleasurable experience. I really appreciated it.

Probably the highlight of the day is the Panda exhibit with Mei Lan, the baby Panda . Mei Lan turns one year old in early September. And will probably be shipped to China after she turns two. So if you want to see the baby Panda, you had better go see the baby Panda sooner than later.

As for the cost, save yourself some money by visiting Atlantix at Lenox Square or Underground Atlanta. You can normally get a ticket for $12.66 [Aug 07] (Normal prices are $18 for adults and $13 for kids). The Atlantix Email listing I will place at the bottom of this post. Or if you are planning a series of visits, there is always the Citypass for $64.

Its fun. Its educational. Its not too expensive. Its well executed. Its located in beautiful Grant Park next to the Cyclorama and very near Historic Oakland Cemetary. This Baboon recommends our Zoo.

Zoo Atlanta ~ Grant Park [ Lenox Square or Underground Atlanta]
A wild time awaits you! Zoo Atlanta is home to nearly 700 individual animals from around the world and provides them with naturalistic environments that simulate their native land. Don't miss the fun and excitement of the Orkin Children's Zoo and KIDZone area. This is the perfect place for kids to gain hands-on experience with our animals. Check out the new Wild Like Me exhibit. For more info go to
Hours: Daily 9:30am-5:30pm - $12.66 **Available daily for same day and next day admission**


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