|From Heritage Park|
As a person always looking for a nice place near the city to get out of the house, get some exercise, and take a walk, I stopped by a really nice newer park in Mableton Georgia, just off the Silver Comet Trail. I always prefer in my walks, good exercise, a little history, a peaceful getaway, and something pretty to look at. I found another nice Atlanta sanctuary in Heritage Park in Cobb County.
Heritage Park must be relatively new because I couldn’t find it on Google Maps. As a matter of fact, its seems to be surrounded by other parks, which I find nice, because it keeps the crowds to a minimum, giving me the break from the city I need. It actually attaches at one spot to the Silver Comet Trail, which even keeps the bicyclists at bay.
Well, as far as Nature goes, there’s some lovely views of Nickajack Creek, along with the Georgia Native Plant Society’s attempt to place a number of Georgia Native Plants in on Central Location for education and awareness. You cross the creek on an ironwork bridge and near the end you see a small, but enjoyable cascading waterfall.
Anything named Heritage Park must have a little history to its credit. On the Trail, you will find the ruins of the Concord Woolen Mills. There are actually two structures from the mills there and the experience is diminished a little by the presence of large metal support structures, designed to preserve the mills, especially during the construction of the East West connector. The Mills were destroyed by the Union troops in a side skirmish during the Atlanta Campaign on July 4, 1864. The Mill was targeted because one of its functions was to produce Confederate Uniforms. The last part of the Mill is unfortunately on private property so it can only be viewed from one direction.
On the Hiking/Exercise scale, this pathway is a little underwhelming, except for the very end of the trail, it seems they have found the only mile of flat land in Northern Georgia. The pathway is 1.7 miles long and requires a round trip to get back to your parking spot.
There are two interesting and very quick side trips you can make. Just before the ruins, there is a way to get to the Silver Comet Trail, and if you take a quick right a go a couple of hundred feet you can walk across a bridge over the East-West Connector and view the beautiful Atlanta traffic. At the very end of the trail, a few hundred feet beyond the Battle of Ruff’s Mill historic marker is the Concord Covered Bridge, the oldest remaining covered bridge in public use anywhere near Atlanta. It too was burnt down in the Battle of Ruff’s Mill but rebuilt in 1872.
Approximate Time: 1.5 hours
Approximate Distance: 4 miles
Trail Surface: Compact Soil, Wooden Bridges.
Features: River Views, Riverside Walk, Historic Ruins, Small Waterfalls, Important flora.
Overall Rating: B
Scenic Quality: B
Hours of Operation: Open Year Round, Sunlight Hours
Facilities: At Trail Head.
Maps: No Trail Marked, but very easy to follow except from the Ruins to the Covered Bridge.