Elijah Clark State Park is full of history and adventure. This 447-acre park is located on the shore of Clarks Hill Lake, one of the biggest lakes in southeast Georgia at 71,000 acres. You’ll enjoy fishing from your boat or the pier, swimming in the cool waters after a long day of hiking, and ending the day comfortably in your RV in one of Elijah Clark’s thickly forested campgrounds. Visit the log-cabin museum and learn about local history, or play a few rounds of miniature golf with the kids. While you’re in the area, don’t forget to check out the other nearby state parks and historic sites. There’s no shortage of fun-filled activities for the whole family at Elijah Clark State Park.
For the true golf aficionado, Lincolnton, Georgia, is the place to be. You'll want to check out some of the finest greens in the area during your stay. Check out the nearby golf course at Hickory Knob State Resort Park, Richard B. Russell State Park and Golf Course, and several other private golf courses nearby. With all the fun activities back at Elijah State Park, your family won't mind you playing a few rounds. While you're out, take a drive through Georgia's classic south and see some antebellum homes. You won't want to be gone too long, or you'll miss out on some fabulous waterskiing with the kids. You'll also want to try out your skills at archery, play some corn hole, or learn to geocache during your stay. Elijah Clark State Park's abundance of activities and historical context make for a southern lake retreat you won’t soon forget.
Elijah Clark State Park is approximately one hour north of Augusta and less than 2.5 hours northeast of Atlanta. Depending on your driving route, the smaller roads, GA-28, GA-47, GA-220 or US-378, as well as the major route, I-20, will take you to the park without much trouble. Because of the park's location, it's easy to get to the park from several major cities in South Carolina. From both Greenville and Columbia, the drive is less than two hours.
RVs up to 50 feet will have no trouble negotiating the RV loop in Elijah Clark Campground #2, where campers may park an additional vehicle if they purchase an extra park pass. Tent campers will enjoy the more rustic walk-in campground, and 20 rental cottages are available all within close proximity to the lakeshore.
There are 20 cottages in Campground #1, located on the shores of Elijah Clark Lake, and 88 campsites. RV sites are both pull-through and back-in for up to 50-foot rigs. The campground is in on the edge of an inlet, so it's surrounded by water on three sides. You'll be sure to have a nice view of the lake. With most having electric hookups, you'll be camping in comfort.
A walk-in tent area offers a bit more seclusion than the other campgrounds but is still near the water. Camp under the trees and enjoy the quiet without the hum of engines. Bathrooms are within walking distance, though. You'll want to reserve your spot since there are only 10 of these sites available.
With over 60 campsites near the lake, RVers will find the perfect spot for a serene stay at Elijah Clark State Park. Pull-through or back-in sites will hold up to a 50-foot RV. Visitors say some spots are not level, so bring some leveling blocks with you. Electric and water are available. Make a reservation to get the coveted areas, which are more heavily treed or closer to the water.
The Pioneer Campsite is a group site accommodating up to 50 people and 12 vehicles. This large site is a dog-friendly tent site with showers, restrooms within walking distance, BBQ grills, fire rings, water, and electricity available. You'll need to make your reservation for this spot well in advance. It's a great place for a family reunion or even a team-building adventure for your business!
Not only is there a fun-for-the-whole-family putt-putt course right inside Elijah Clark State Park, but the surrounding area is known for its full-size golf greens. You'll want to try out the nearby Hickory Knob Golf Course, Richard B. Russell State Park, as well as several other well-groomed, private courses in the area. Lincoln County has some of the most affordable golfing in the southeast, with several courses complementing one of the country's most famous courses, the Augusta National Golf Club.
Visitors can choose between two popular trails in Elijah Clark State Park, but most hikers prefer the 2.5-mile Hannah Clark Nature Trail, which keeps a view of the lake for the entire walk. However, if you prefer a shady wooded hike, then you'll prefer the other path. The other, called simply Hiking Trail, is about three miles long, but winds through the beautiful pine and hardwood forest. Depending on the time of year, you will see a variety of wildlife on your hike, so don't leave your camera behind.
The weather in Georgia is hot, and Clark Hills Lake is perfect for cooling off after a morning hike or a few hours on the boat fishing. Its sandy shores are perfect for wading into the cool, clean waters of the reservoir, and with over 1200 miles of shoreline, you won't have to fight the crowds for your section of beach. If water skiing is more your speed, there is plenty of room to go fast. Water skiing is allowed outside of the no-wake zones. You'll be refreshed and ready for more exploring after an afternoon on the lake.
Clark Hills Lake offers anglers the opportunity to catch a wide variety of catfish, bluegill, bass, crappie, and pickerel in its pristine waters. The lake is also known as Lake Strom Thurmond and is, in fact, a 71,000-acre reservoir in eastern Georgia. It is a popular site for anglers who like to fish from the pier or a boat since it offers several boat ramps. Fishing from the sandy shore is fun as well, though if you want to catch that really large bass fish, you'll want to launch your boat. Take your catch back to the campground to grill before spending a comfortable night in the 5th wheel.
Graves Mountain is a nearby historical mining site located in Lincolnton and opens to the public by appointment. Call the caretaker to let him know you're coming before heading out for your geological adventure. Bring a picnic lunch and get ready to dig. Rockhounds will love taking home some hematite, pyrite, blue quartz, quartz crystals, rutile, lazulite, and many other types of rocks and minerals. No children under 12 are allowed, but you may bring your leashed pet.
When visiting Elijah State Park, take some time to see the surrounding area of Lincoln County, Georgia. Lincolnton, itself, is rich with history and boasts of 160 registered historic buildings, and here you will find some of the most beautiful antebellum homes in the south. So, get your camera and stop by the Chamber of Commerce to get a map before heading out on a tour of the classic south.
Located inside the park, the log cabin replica of Elijah and Hannah Clark's home is open for visitors. You will enjoy imagining what it was like for early settlers in the area. Elijah Clark was known both for settling the area after Europeans were given the land as part of a treaty and for his contribution to the Revolutionary War. The memorial home shows the architecture and style Clark used in his original home, and the museum displays many artifacts from the 1700s.
Autumn and early winter are prime times to see wildlife in Elijah Clark's pine and hardwood forest, and because it's in the south, it's still warm enough for a comfortable day hike with the family. Not only is the autumn foliage beautiful, but so are the bald eagles. You are also likely to see white-tail deer, foxes, and turkeys all in search of their winter meals. Some visitors are lucky enough to see an endangered golden eagle from time to time, as well. You'll want to photograph the changing of the leaves as well as any critters you run across, so charge up those batteries and make a day of it.