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Located in the northwest part of Georgia, and less than an hour’s drive to the city of Atlanta is Red Top Mountain State Park, a haven for hikers and outdoor enthusiasts. It is one of Georgia’s most popular state parks, thanks to its location right by Lake Allatoona. Just a stone’s throw away from Cartersville, the park covers over 1700 acres of pristine forest, along with parts of the park jutting into the Etowah River and Allatoona Creek, making it an ideal location for camping in Red Mountain State Park.
Known for its iron ore-rich soil, Red Top Mountain was once a mining area. The park is historically relevant for its location during the Battle of Allatoona Pass during the American Civil War. Today, it’s all about immersing yourself in scenic surroundings, and it’s a good idea to book an RV in Red Top Mountain State Park to make the most of this natural haven!
While the state park’s main attraction is Lake Allatoona and activities surrounding the lake, it is also credited with being an excellent hiking park with a range of trails to explore for hikers that are camping at Red Top Mountain State Park. With about 12 miles of wooded hiking trails to explore, the trails range from half a mile to five and half miles in distance, and range from easy to moderate. For visitors with disabilities, there is an ADA accessible loop, Lakeside Trail that is about 3/4 of a mile, paved, and suitable for strollers and wheelchairs, and passes a section of the Lake Allatoona shoreline. Other trails worth checking out are White Tail Trail that covers half a mile one way, and is a moderate hike; the Homestead Trail is the longest, at over five miles, and moderate. Remember though, this trail is only for hiking, and no bicycles are permitted. For mountain biking, try the Iron Hill Bike Trail that’s a little less than four miles, and has a gravel path. Certain parts of the trail go along the banks of Lake Allatoona.
The park has a full-service marina for boating, that’s privately owned, and you can rent boats here. The lake is popular for anglers, and you have the option of boat or shoreline fishing. Georgia laws require a valid fishing license. In case you forget to pack your fishing gear into your RV rental, there’s a store that offers boat and fishing supplies for rent.
Swimming is another favorite pastime at Lake Allatoona, with a swimming beach providing easy access to the lake.
Red Top Mountain State Park camping areas come equipped with pull-thru sites, big rig access, 30 and 50 AMP electricity, water, restrooms, showers, and laundry. There’s plenty of space for the kids to run around and play. Pets are welcome too, though it’s advisable to keep pets on a leash while in the park. With over 100 sites available for RV camping at Red Top Mountain State Park, there are also options for renting cottages or cabins in the park. And even if you just want to drive into the park for a picnic, there are picnic shelters available.
If you’re looking for a place to camp near Red Top Mountain State Park, try the Allatoona Landing Marine Resort in Cartersville. The sites are paved, and most of them are shaded. Some of the sites are equipped with full hookups, pull-thru, and back-in options. They have fire rings and picnic tables too. The campground also offers restrooms, showers, laundry facilities, metered LP Gas, onsite rentals, and RV supplies. For recreation, there’s a swimming pool, plenty of nature trails, and of course, Lake Allatoona. Various discounts are available here, so be sure to ask when making your reservation.
In the neighboring town of Calhoun is the Calhoun A-OK Campground with over 50 sites, providing full hookups, gravel sites, shaded sites, 30 and 50 AMP electricity, and trash pick-up. There are restrooms and showers, laundry facilities, a camp store with RV supplies, groceries, and camping essentials. This pet-friendly campsite is ideal if you want to stay away from the state park, but be close enough to access it easily.
A rental RV is one of the best ways to explore the Red Top Mountain State Park region and beyond. Once you’ve finished exploring the state park, drive towards the neighboring city of Cartersville. Whether you stay for a day or the weekend, or more, there is plenty to see and do in this city. If you enjoy history and art, then a stop at the museums of Cartersville is a must! Check out the Booth Western Art Museum that has the country’s largest collection of Western Art. Don’t miss the gallery of letters signed by every past US president. The Bartow History Museum in downtown Cartersville takes you through Georgia’s industrial, cultural and agricultural heritage. The kids will enjoy the Tellus Science Museum, replete with gigantic dinosaurs, early marvels of transportation, and replicas of space exploration.
Weinman Mineral Gallery is another huge draw at the museum. While in Cartersville, make a trip in your rental RV to the Etowah Indian Mounds State Historic Site, and take a walk into the history of the area that served as a prehistoric home to thousands of Native Americans. Car lovers shouldn’t miss the Old Car City USA, displaying over 4000 classic cars, including Elvis Presley’s last ride.
For a fun evening on the town, catch a performance at the Cartersville Grand Theater. Try out the many pubs and restaurants dotting the city for a wholesome Georgian meal.