Panther Creek Trail

#1 of 143 trails in Cohutta Wildlife Management Area
Panther Creek Trail is a 7.2 mile trail located near Clarkesville, Georgia that features a waterfall and is accessible year-round. This trail is awesome since it has great diversity in terrain, and is really pretty in the Fall when the leaves turn.

7.88 miles Out & Back 740 feet
Dog Friendly
camping hiking walking dogs leash forest river
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Panther Creek Trail are along US 441, 14 miles North of Cornelia. Turn left, following the sign, onto Glen Hardman Road. Immediately take a right onto Old 441; signs for the trailhead are in 1 mile. There is a $3 parking fee to park

Julie Rossi

1 Completed1 Reviews

Great first hike with my 7 year old son.


11 Completed6 Reviews

gorgeous for the first half, but then the trail is not well maintained. I suggest hiking to the little waterfall and turning back.

Bridget Maguire

4 Completed4 Reviews

moderate hike with some ups and downs. need to go slow and pay attention near the end though. very narrow with a shear drop off on one side of the trail. we took our dog and he did fine but you have to go slow. one of the most beautiful falls I have seen in georgia.

Bryan Nixon

17 Completed18 Reviews

Jane Nixon

12 Completed14 Reviews

Doug Mallow

9 Completed6 Reviews

I've hiked this trail many times with middle schoolers who had no experience hiking! We were apart of a Mission Camp program that prepared them for serving in short term missions. We would hike in, in the AM, swim and have lunch at the falls. It served our purpose well, teaching them the importance of preparing well (having water and wearing good footwear) and enjoying the beauty of God's creation! For some, it was a bit difficult, especially if they weren't used to getting much exercise. Overall, we had fun and it was a "good stretch of the legs"!

Alison Delaney

28 Completed5 Reviews

We are a couple in our '50's and '60's and are physically fit. For us this trail wasn't difficult but neither was it easy. We tackled it on day 3 of a 3-day hiking weekend, so we were a little tired and sore, too. For folks in their 20's and 30's this will be easy probably. The elevation gain/loss is mild, but you should wear sturdy boots if you have ankle issues: lots of tree roots cover the trail in many parts creating an unstable surface. Waterfall #1 was just far enough in to make a good water break. Waterfall #2 is beautiful and for the most part, serene. Don't turn back at #1 or #2 though because the payoff is waterfall #3 and it is spectacular and worth the walk.

I agree with the other hiker who noted the trash. I've never seen a trail in Georgia or North Carolina that had as much trash. We carted out a perfectly good, actually brand new, water noodle floaty thing. Apparently this toy, which weighed all of about 8 oz., was too heavy or unwieldy for the owner to carry out. Poor baby. We also saw two inner tubes, a pair of socks, a bandana, a cooking pot and more water bottles, kleenex, paper towels, napkins, soda and beer cans then we could count. Just disgusting.

Here's another thing...if you are approaching from the South, heading north, the parking lot will be on your left and the trail head will be on your right. You can park on the road on the right hand side but you cannot park on the road on the left hand side (heading north), on the opposite side of the trail head. There are signs but curiously they face the opposite direction so you can't see them. We saw sheriff's department writing tickets today.

Kam Safaie

6 Completed2 Reviews

Justin Griffith

12 Completed9 Reviews

Fairly mild trail with plenty of pretty scenery. Having the trail run along the creek makes for nice sounds and atmosphere. Panther is an excellent spot for overnight hike/camp trips as there are plentiful campgrounds along the trail and creek and the forest and terrain are just really nice to experience. If you want to camp the waterfall but the main area is full, keep going on the trail a little ways and there are some more areas just around the corner.

Reviews on the difficulty of this place seem to be split. If you're an intermediate or advanced hiker, you'll likely find this wildly easy, especially if you've spent plenty of time on the AT. The inclines here are practically non-existent by comparison and the trail at times is quite wide. I saw day hikers in August in pants without water doing this hike if that tells you anything. If you're not used to hiking, I could see some of the terrain here being quite a challenge, especially the area just before and after the falls.

This past weekend, we were the last people to leave the falls in the morning, behind three groups camping at the falls, one of which was a Boy Scout troop. Someone out there left a white kitchen-size trash bag overflowing with garbage. In addition, there were cigarette packs and water bottles all over the place. That is completely unacceptable. This is a hugely popular spot, so it's hard to not leave a trace, but everyone can certainly pick up their own garbage.

Distance-wise, it seems nobody can agree on how far the trail is, so I'll add to the confusion with my own number. I brought my FitBit to track steps and it reports that the waterfall is about 4 miles from Hwy 441.

Diana Ogles

1 Completed1 Reviews

The blazes were few and far between, so we kept losing the trail and had to backtrack several times.

About one mile in, the trail branched and we took the right branch. Really rough and dangerous trail. On the way back, we found the upper trail that led from the left branch. It was ridiculously easy. So be sure to take the left branch.

Lots of people. There must have been thirty people camping along the 3.5 mile trail. Also tons of day hikers. Probably shared the falls with forty people. But it was very pretty and the cold water at the falls felt fantastic on a hot day.