Licklog Mountain

Licklog Mountain

Approximate size: 11,763 acres
Old-growth known: 26 acres

Adventure racers and endurance enthusiasts have fallen in love with the western half of Duncan Ridge. From near the Toccoa River, 11.4 miles of Duncan Ridge Trail climb through the center of this Mountain Treasure, following the saw-tooth profile of the namesake ridge. Those rapidfire steep ascents and descents make the trail “the perfect proving ground” in Backpacker magazine’s view.

Erosion and sustainability concerns are forcing the Forest Service to gradually reroute the trail. So hikers will have to fall back on the other charms that the trail provides, of which there are many. Standing 1,000 to 1,500 feet above the surrounding valleys, Duncan Ridge provides outstanding winter views of the Rich Mountains, Blood Mountain, and adjacent valleys. Closer at hand, the trail skirts by small stands of old-growth oak forest, interesting rock formations, and an old mining prospect. At Rhodes Mountain, the Benton MacKaye Trail diverges from the Duncan Ridge Trail, opening up possibilities for many long-distance hikes.

As is often the case, the slopes support more life than the mountain top. Diverse cove forests full of stately hardwoods thrive on the north slope. The south side feeds the trout waters of Coopers Creek. Here, towering stands of white pines line tributaries between dry hardwood ridges. The whole area provides a critical habitat link between the high elevations on the main Blue Ridge and the south side of the Toccoa River watershed, the first area brought into the Chattahoochee National Forest.

Help us protect this 16,000-acre oasis of waterfalls, old-growth, rare species, panoramic views, and world-class trails.


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