On top of Rabun Bald, an adult locust borer eats goldenrod pollen Photo by Jess Riddle

Rabun Bald Rabun Bald Approximate size: 17,694 acres Old-growth known: 1,270 acres Rabun Bald, Georgia’s second highest peak, sits at the western end of the Blue Ridge Escarpment and on…

Read More
An unnamed falls splashes through the Grassy Ridge extension. Photo by Bruce Roberts.

Southern Nantahala Wilderness Extensions Southern Nantahala Wilderness Extensions Approximate size (acres): GA 7,894; NC 14,811 Old-growth known (acres): GA 558; NC 1,523 Georgia shares the 23,365-acre Southern Nantahala Wilderness with…

Read More
A rare Diana fritillary pollinates mountain mint in the Patterson Gap Mountain Treasure. Photo by Jess Riddle

Patterson Gap Patterson Gap Approximate size: 5,681 acres Old-growth known: 647 acres Patterson Gap is a microcosm of north Georgia. The area has plateaus and cliffs, wildflower coves and rock…

Read More
Kelly Ridge includes several unnamed cascades in scenic settings. Photo by David Fann

Kelly Ridge Kelly Ridge Approximate size: 15,273 acres Old-growth known: 662 acres Kelly Ridge has everything people love about the mountains. This area offers visitors grand vistas, wildflower coves, dramatic…

Read More
Photo by Sue Harmon

Buzzard Knob Buzzard Knob Approximate size: 9,789 acres Old-growth known: 250 acres The high ridge that the Appalachian Trail follows provides the best chance for Georgia’s mountain species to migrate…

Read More
Turk’s-cap lilies are common in high elevation deciduous forests, such as those found on Brasstown Bald. Photo by Randy Lewis

Brasstown Wilderness Extensions Brasstown Wilderness Extensions Approximate size: 5,056 acres Old-growth known: 187 acres The tower on top of Brasstown Bald, Georgia’s highest peak, is probably the best landmark in…

Read More
Andrews Creek flows along the foot of Rocky Mountain. Photo by Larry Winslett – www.larrywinslettphotography.com.

Andrews Cove Andrews Cove Approximate size: 4,883 acres Old-growth known: 746 acres Georgia Highway 17/75 runs north from Helen along the west side of the Andrews Cove Mountain Treasure making…

Read More
An old American chestnut branch persists on the slopes near Springer Mountain. Photo by Jess Riddle

Springer Mountain Springer Mountain Approximate size: 12,659 acres Old-growth known: 712 acres This area is best known for Springer Mountain and the start of America’s most iconic trail, the Appalachian…

Read More
A red maple transforms in the fall. The tallest known red maple in Georgia once grew in the northern extension. Photo by Larry Winslett – www.larrywinslettphotography.com

Raven Cliff Wilderness Extensions Raven Cliff Wilderness Extensions Approximate size: 7,340 acres Old-growth known: 103 acres First set aside in 1986, the Raven Cliff Wilderness Area encompasses 6.8 miles of…

Read More
Raccoons are one of many species that benefit from tree cavities. Photo by Patricia L. Cross

Long Mountain Long Mountain Approximate size: 5,493 acres Old-growth known: 210 acres This area is among the most easily overlooked and underappreciated of the mountain treasures. Overlooking Dahlonega from the…

Read More