If you’re wondering what there is to do at Panola Mountain State Park, the answer is a lot. The state park located in Stockbridge, Georgia, has an ever-changing schedule of events occurring around the year. Those in search of trails and even those looking to have fun indoors will be pleased with Panola Mountain State Park’s offerings. Activities span from mountain hikes to indoor cosmic archery, the perfect activities for outdoor recreation lovers and those in search of adventure in the metro Atlanta region.
Hiking Panola Mountain
Panola Mountain is a granite outcrop known as a monadnock, with only two other mountains in Georgia holding that title: Stone Mountain and Arabia Mountain. Panola Mountain also has a designation as a conservation area that is home to rare plant life that must be protected. For this reason, the mountain is only accessible with a guide. Park staff and members of a volunteer group called the Friends of Panola facilitate hikes of varying lengths. Some of the hikes offered include a 1.5 mile sunset hike that ends with s’mores around a campfire or a 5 mile extended hike where details of the surrounding area and plant life are explored in more detail.
Walking, Biking and Archery at Panola Mountain State Park
Visitors to Panola Mountain State Park must access the mountain through a ranger-led tour, but there are 25 miles of trails available for those active individuals who enjoy walking, running or biking. For only $10, you can rent a bicycle at the nature center. Archery is another fun activity offered by the state park, with options to use an outdoor course that includes traditional static targets or realistic 3D recreations of animals such as deer and turkey. You can test your bow & arrow skills outdoors or join one of the indoor archery classes. Some dates are even designated for cosmic archery, complete with glow-in-the-dark bows & arrows.
Tree Climbing and ZZZs in the Trees
You may have climbed trees as a kid, but it’s likely you didn’t reach the canopy of a 60-feet oak tree. Although Panola Mountain State Park’s rope and pulley version of tree climbing is slightly different than what you may have experienced as a kid, it’s just as exciting (and much safer). For anyone new to an activity like this one, it can take some time to get into the groove of things but the work you put in is definitely worth the reward of reaching the top of the tree to enjoy the view. During special ZZZs in the Trees events, tree climbers spend the night in tree boats before waking up and making their way down the tree the next morning.
Panola Mountain State Park Offers Variety
Along with activities mentioned above, Panola has more for you to explore. The park offers the opportunity for visitors to take part in hobbies including birding, bouldering, and geocaching. Fishing and camping are also popular activities at the park. Currently undergoing reconstruction, the campgrounds and lakes are temporarily closed until Spring 2019. A family-friendly event to look forward to is the annual Reptile Day on Saturday, May 11. Exhibitors from all over the state showcase exotic and native reptiles.
State Parks Pass
Although daily parking at Panola Mountain State Park is reasonably priced at only five dollars, if you find yourself really into the outdoor lifestyle, you may want to consider purchasing a ParkPass. The pass grants you parking access to any state park (excluding state historic sites) for 12 months following the purchase date. You can buy a ParkPass at the nature center or order a pass online.
Find New Adventure at Panola Mountain State Park
Never visited Panola Mountain State Park? Treat yourself to a new experience or reacquaint yourself with one of the many activities to choose from. For a full list of things to do at Panola Mountain State Park, find more information here. Whether you’re enjoying the view of a sunset, tree canopies or the trail up ahead, you can find activities that appeal to a variety of interests.