Panther Creek Trail

#1 of 143 trails in Cohutta Wildlife Management Area

Join the largest community of outdoor enthusiasts.

Get Started

Upgrade to Pro

Unlimited access to National Geographic TOPO! & Trails Illustrated Maps

Learn More »

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.

Share your experience to help other people learn more about this trail:

Write ReviewUpload PhotosUpload Tracks

Jason Callaway (198)

4 Completed1 Reviews

My girlfriend and I for many months have been trying to do some serious hiking and finally made our way to Panther Creek. We read the information that all trail gives for how long and how treacherous. We found that the 7.2 miles is a one way trip. Started out at 3:30, got to the waterfalls at 6:15. We knew we had to make it back to the car, got there at 8:20 just before dark. 14 miles and 5 hours, with not enough water. Totally unprepared won't let that happen again. love and best wishes to all who venture on this trail its 14 miles round trip. Keep hiking

James Strain (81)

3 Completed1 Reviews

I have done this trail two or three times now. This is an awesome place. Although there are a bunch of people there in the summer time and they leave so much trash behind and really mess up the awesome beach area. But the falls are awesome and so is the hike. And it fun to take a refreshing dip into the natural pool. I've have yet to go all the way to the dam yet, but next time my fiancee and I go we are doing the whole thing.

Andy Bishop (87)

2 Completed2 Reviews

I'm pretty new to backpacking, and did a solo overnighter here as one of my first backpacking trips. As a newbie, it is pretty strenuous and has some cool features that make you feel "adventurous," but the ups and downs aren't too extreme. There are a couple really steep climbs, but they're short and footing is more of an issue than exertion. If you aren't very confident in your balance or with heights, you should probably bring someone along because it would be tough to get out of some places on this trail if you got injured. I will say don't let the 3.5 mile distance fool you. The out-and-back with a lunch break would be a pretty full day-hike. If you can do the whole trip in the three hours mentioned on this page, you're in pretty good shape and not stopping for breaks. The scenery is awesome and the pictures don't do the falls justice. There are plenty of campsites, but be prepared to camp with some neighbors. Bring a fishing rod too, because it's a stocked trout stream! And please pack out your trash. Someone left half their gear and a ton of food containers at the base of the falls before I got there.

Marla Watt (182)

2 Completed1 Reviews

This may be a favorite hike now- it's up there with Cloudland Canyon. near the end it's VERY steep and it had rained the day before so it was also muddy and slippery. Next to the waterfall / swimming hole there's plenty of room to camp and picnic. I loved that there are also plenty of places along the trail to stop creekside and sit on a rock or wade in the water. Overall, beautiful, challenging, fun and rewarding hike.

Daniele Dale (144)

2 Completed1 Reviews

A friend and I took our kids, they did fine but it's quite a long trail for little ones. Nice camping area next to the creek. Had quite a few steep ledges and slick spots. Go early in the day, it's rough trying to get out at night.

Amanda Mabrey (566)

4 Completed3 Reviews

A great trail.Camping sites are located along trail. Make sure you have water and some snacks.Very beautiful.Lots of picture perfect views. If you plan on making it a day trip then go early. Has several areas that you can get in the water if it's warm enough.

Matthew Brumelow (221)

2 Completed1 Reviews

My wife and I did an over-night backpacking trip here in late Fall, on a Sunday. There were a lot of day hikers and a few campers out there. If you're looking to get away from people, I'd avoid this trail.
It is quite beautiful though, with the trail following Panther Creek essentially all the way to the falls. Lots of sunlight gets through, as parts of the trail have light tree cover. The falls are large and beautiful, if a bit crowded.
Plenty of camping sites along the trail as well, located all throughout the trail. We backtracked from the falls because there is very little firewood available near the falls. There are several camp sites beyond the falls, but little to no fire wood to be easily found.

James Nichols (150)

5 Completed5 Reviews

Beautiful, relaxing hike. Pretty straightforward aside from some steep-ish boulders and banks when nearing the main falls. The trail follows the creek, so there is the amazing sound of rushing water for almost the entire hike! A great variety of terrain and elevations. There are also plenty of little side trails that take the hiker to some cool little secluded nooks.

One warning: as has been mentioned in a couple other reviews--this is a very popular trail, especially on nice weather weekends. It can get a bit crowded. If a secluded commune with nature is what you seek, look elsewhere or try the trail at an "off" time.

Hiking Diva . (4252)

79 Completed62 Reviews

Nice day hike and this is my "go to hike" for first time backpackers. Plenty of options to camp - things can get a bit crowded/rowdy at the base of the falls on weekends and during the summer. It can be a bit slick at the final descent to the falls - steepish, packed red clay. There are a few narrow spots that can make people a smidge nervous if afraid of heights. I have seen a few copperheads, so keep an eye out... yes, there are snakes all over the place - just a reminder - an older man almost sat on one sunning on a rock!

I usually find a fair amount of trash on this trail, so bring a bag and pick up what you can on the way back.

Bil Kennedy (324)

31 Completed3 Reviews

Best trail I've been on in GA yet. Don't kid yourself, it's only 7.2 miles round trip, but it requires some exertion. I wouldn't recommend the entire trail to the falls for young children unless they are accustomed to such (which btw have a great swimming area - cold - at the bottom of the falls) . Our dogs did well, but were exhausted at the end of the hike. Our medium-sized dog (Brittany Spaniel) struggled and had to be helped up certain rocky sections (also when off leash went down a steep embankment to swim, and couldn't get back up - I had to rescue him).The Dane was able to conquer all with relative ease, but required frequent breaks on the return trip despite the rest stop at the falls. This trail follows the creek almost the entire way to the falls, and offers very diverse terrain. I can't wait to go back when the leaves are turning.