Panther Creek Recreation Area

Panther Creek Recreation Area

Panther Creek Recreation Area
4.5
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4.5
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GeorgiaGal09
Nicholson, GA244 contributions
Nov 2021
Hubby and I were in the area, and he remembered visiting this spot as a youngster. Honestly, the facilities seem to date back to long past. The restrooms look better than anything, and if you have ever been to an outhouse, you will understand them. Several picnic tables are scattered about; some crumbling, all covered in moss and pine needles. There are a couple of nifty picnic shelters, one of which has a large fireplace. Very few people picnic any more, so this is a throwback, for sure. There are a couple of bridges, connecting short trails. The creek is fairly shallow, but moves rapidly across the rocks. It's scenic, but really, really rustic.

My guess is that as this is off of "historic 441" that no one is paying any attention to it. Technically, visitors are supposed to pay $4 to park, but we just stopped on the side of the road and took a short walk.

It could still be an okay spot to fish or to let your active kids expend some energy, but don't expect much.
Written 4 November 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

meanmom2boys
Orlando, FL31 contributions
Mar 2021 • Couples
I was excited to try this trail however it is closed. Based on posted signage they seem pretty serious about it!! I did not see any info about a reopening date.
Written 17 March 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Dan
Panama City Beach, FL11,924 contributions
Jul 2020 • Friends
Recently my brother and I hiked the trail to Panther Creek Falls. We are both experienced hikers and have completed this trail in the past. If you like a trail with numerous challenges then this 7 mile adventure is for you. From the parking area you walk across Highway 441 where the hike begins. The trail is natural terrain and heavy erosion makes it very rough in places. It follows Panther creek downstream for most of the way as it winds through towering trees in the mostly hardwood forest. It is well marked so it is easy to follow. Along the way there are creeks to ford, lots of steps to climb, fallen trees to navigate, wooden bridges to cross, as well as massive rock outcrops that you pass under, over and around. Sections of the trail are extremely narrow and drop sharply and suddenly to the creek below (there are cable handrails in place to try and help keep hikers safe). Be prepared for a few elevation changes along the way. You will also pass multiple campsites just off the trail all located beside the creek. They are all first-come, first-camp so arrive early. As you approach the falls at the 3.5 mile mark you will cross an extremely large rock outcrop that descends to the base of Panther Creek falls. The trail here has been relocated and restored in the last several years making it much easier and safer than before. At the base of the large multi-tiered waterfall there is a sandy beach with huge fallen trees positioned so you can sit, relax and enjoy the view. The day we were there a group of folks were swimming and enjoying the cool water at the base of the falls. It’s a great resting spot before you start your return hike. We had a great time. Highly recommend.
...Parking...
There are less than 10 parking spaces. When the lot is full people park along Highway 441. There is a $4.00 dollar day use charge. Restroom & picnics tables near the parking area.
FYI... Chad Black Habersham County Emergency Services Director states that there has already been three “sick call” rescues since July 11th and six overall rescue operations staged since March
(including a hiker who took a 30 foot fall from the trail onto a sand bar in the creek). This is a difficult trail. The high heat index and the humidity of the summer months only compound the difficulty. If you are not an experienced hiker or in good physical condition I would recommend you steer clear of this 7 mile hike at least until the fall months arrive.
Written 24 July 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ann J
Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, United States33 contributions
Jun 2020
Great hike...wasn’t quite prepared for it to take as long as it did. It ended up being almost 8 miles round trip and took 3.5 hrs. Beautiful falls and beach area.
Written 17 June 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Bobmar99
Gulf Breeze, FL20 contributions
Sept 2019
This is a very scenic trail Had the wife, daughter and our dog. The dog loved it the most. Had great swims in the pool areas along the trail. Beautiful flora and hardwood trees. Great place to camp and very convenient from Clarkesville. A day well spent.
Written 8 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

BOWSERZ
Atlanta, GA73 contributions
Sept 2019
Parking is limited at the trailhead and occasionally you will find people parked along side the road. Vehicles parked at the Recreation Area are expected to pay a parking fee. There is a green honor system collection box as your drive in where you can pick up your one day permit. Failure to have a proper permit could result in your vehicle being towed..

The 7.0 hike to Panther Creek Falls (10+ when you take in to consideration the elevation changes, etc.) is not marked (blazed) very well. If it had not been for another hiker, I would have thought we had reached the bottom at one point. The hike starts off very mild but just about 3/4 of the way down, you find yourself climbing rocks, traversing narrow passages, and only when you have found yourself climbing down a ledge will you know that you have reached Panther Creek Falls.
Stop! Take a break, sit on the rocks or maybe even take a dip in the swimming hole. The water is crystal clear and very refreshing.
The Hike back is mostly uphill and can be very taxing especially if you are not use to it. I am 50+, overweight, out of shape, have extremely poor vision, and uncoordinated but even I managed to make it. Oddly, some of those rocks and cliffs you may have had trouble with going down are much easier going up.. Use tree's, exposed roots, etc. to help you if necessary.
WARNING! Take plenty of water! This is a very long hike with some serious elevation gains. While the water from the creek is crystal clear, looks and smells, refreshing and tested safe, I am still not sure I would want to consume it in any serious quantity without first treating it. The walk back may be very hard on small children or older folks, there is plenty of places to stop for a few months and catch you breath and admire the beauty..

Lastly, during our visit a couple of fellow hikers reported seeing snakes and yellow jacket nests. Watch out as in some areas, running is not an option..
Written 4 September 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Elaine J
Hartwell, GA126 contributions
Mar 2019 • Friends
We got to area after lunch and it was packed as far as parking goes. Cars lined the side of the road for miles. I am 57 years old and my friend is 49. For us it was a rather difficult hike but we would definitely do it again. It's a good bit longer than advertised and it took us a several hours but we stopped several times for pictures, water breaks etc. We also had a small dog with us who was in heaven. All along the hike there are places to camp and the creek is beautiful and always in sight. People were fishing in some spots as well. Lots of hikers , kids, and dogs. Several areas are very narrow and there are lots of exposed roots. There are several bridges to cross and several areas where you must cross the creek. Coming back the rocks are very slippery I suppose from sand, and or, mud on your shoes. My friend busted her butt coming back. We also saw a few other people very muddy and one with skinned knees. There are several areas with overhanging rocks and around these areas is a lot of black mud. No way to avoid stepping in it. Some of the more treacherous areas have metal poles with cord but trees have fallen on some of them and some aren't even anchored in the ground anymore. For us it was scary in spots. There are a few spots with no railings, very narrow and the drop is straight down. If you fall... thankfully we did not as I'm writing this post. When you come to what you think is the end of the trail to the falls it really isn't. But there are huge rocks there to sit and relax and feel the cool water spray you. Great place for pictures. You can look down and see all the people at the very bottom having the time of their lives. If you are brave you can venture to the bottom. We did but it by far the most difficult part of the hike. I just had to sit down and slide down the muddy rocks. For me it was not fun and I was sweating with sweat burning my eyes so bad. But to get to the bottom and see all the people with Enu's hanging in the trees and the laughter was amazing. Dogs having the best time. Some people were brave enough to swim and sit under the falls. The climb back up was easier. It took us much longer than other reviews and much of the hike back is uphill. So far this has been my most challenging, and fun hike. It is most definitely a hike, not a walk. I have a bad knee and hip so I'm feeling it this morning but I would do it again. My only advice would be to get there early so that you can enjoy the falls without dreading having to go back. 😂. We loved it.
Written 31 March 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Drew N
48 contributions
Mar 2019 • Couples
My wife and I did the hike to the falls and was not disappointed. It is 3.5 miles one way and is not for those that are not in shape. A few of the paths are barely one person wide and you are walking along rocks near drop offs to the water. It really was a lot of fun and we are happy we did it. The falls are worth the hike. Take plenty of water!!
Written 27 March 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Shelby O
Florida13 contributions
Jan 2019 • Couples
Easy to find, park and follow trail. Many places on the trail to stop by rocks, go in water or just relax. Only last mile is very cautious. Some of cables are broken and it’s small space to walk in between rocks on the trail. If anyone else is coming there is no where to step aside. We went on a day after rain and was slippery. We are avid hikers in our 40 and 50’s and had no trouble. Anyone else we saw, families with teenagers and some older couples wouldn’t venture to the end. You are along the creek the whole way and it’s just gorgeous. We would do this hike again!
Written 3 January 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

jarabun67
Lakemont, GA89 contributions
Jul 2018 • Solo
I am not a heavy duty hard core hiker and I had no problem making this hike a few different times. It is 3 ½ miles in and out, 7 total. The final half a mile does get a little rough, but it is easy if you take it slow. The payoff is the Panther Creek falls. These are a gorgeous set of falls that creates a nice sandy bottom pool. Make sure to take a towel or extra socks because your feet will love spending some time in the nice cold water. Yes, the water is cold even in the summer.

If camping is your thing there are several spots along the trail to camp as well as places at the falls to camp.
Written 26 October 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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PANTHER CREEK RECREATION AREA: All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

Frequently Asked Questions about Panther Creek Recreation Area