I finally had the chance to visit Red Top Mountain State Park, in Cartersville, GA. My younger daughter and I participated in the Red Top Roaster 5K/10K trail run, presented by Dirty Spokes – Trail Running.
For the past 25 years, our family has passed the exit to this state park off I-75 on our way to visit relatives in other areas of Georgia and Alabama. Each time we passed, I would wonder about the park and what mysteries it held. I got my chance to find out a few weeks ago when my younger daughter and I ran in the first of four state park races sponsored by Dirty Spokes Trail Running. Read more about that here.
Red Top Mountain State Park is located along the shores of Lake Alatoona in Cartersville, Georgia. Established after the creation of the lake in 1947 with the damming of the Etowah River, it is one of the most visited state parks in Georgia, due to its close proximity to Atlanta and I-75. The park offers a wide variety of activities for all outdoor enthusiasts, from the adventures to those out for a bit of relaxation.
Visitors can be seen enjoying boating, kayaking, fishing, swimming, hiking, mountain biking, geocaching, and camping.
Accommodations include the Red Top Mountain Lodge, which includes 92 guest rooms, which range in price from $75-$130 per night, space for conference groups, reunions, weddings, and other parties. Also included is a restaurant and swimming pool which are exclusive for lodge and cottage guests. Other accommodations include 18 cottages, two of which are dog friendly, and camping sites for tents and RVs.
There is an entry fee of $5 per vehicle for day use, or you can purchase an annual pass for $50, which gives you full access to any state park in Georgia for one year, from the date of purchase.
During our visit, we explored the swimming area, a few campsites, and the various trails throughout the park. I’m hoping to return for a lengthy camping trip to uncover more of the park’s attractions.