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Hiking Guide to Providence Canyon State Park, Lumpkin, GA

Updated: Sep 27

Among densely packed pine trees are nine strikingly red-orange canyons, this is “Georgia’s Little Grand Canyon” located in Lumpkin, Georgia. To see each of these canyons we recommend completing the Canyon Loop Trail, a 2.5-mile trail, as well as visiting the base of the canyons. This is our favorite state park in Georgia (so far) and we visited it on three separate occasions.

Providence Canyon State Park is located 45-minute driving distance south of Columbus, Georgia which is the nearest city. This state park has back-country camping, two picnic areas, and a museum from which both hiking trails start. The Canyon Loop Trail brings you to the base of the canyons following along a sandy riverbed.

The 150 feet tall canyons can be seen in comparison to a group of hikers below

The Canyon Loop Trail begins with a steep descent from the visitor's center. Following along the riverbed you follow the canyons in a counter-clockwise direction, starting with Canyon #1.

The trail zig-zags through each canyon, with dense pine trees growing throughout. This is a unique hike that takes an average of 2 hours to complete and is dog-friendly. Make sure to bring enough water and bug spray.

Rusted car left behind by the homesteaders who used to farm this area

This trail is ranked easy to moderate, although it can be challenging for young children or older individuals because of a few steep spots and the terrain. The iron-rich red soil will shift beneath your feet and the riverbed mud sink under each step.

Our biggest recommendation is that you wear shoes that are quick-drying and are not waterproof. Some people would benefit from using hiking poles as well. Several canyons can be climbed, and the trail ends with a steep incline to return to the visitor center.

Unlike the Grand Canyon or Zion National Park, these canyons are the result of poor farming practices from the 19th and 20th centuries that caused erosion. Remnants of the past are visible through the canyon, with 1950s eras cars scattered throughout and a historic Methodist Church located above Canyon #2.

Be mindful of fences that protect visitors from unstable land near cliff edges and areas where climbing is not permitted due to safety reasons. Completing this trail is one requirement of the Canyon Climbers Club, a program by Georgia State Parks that can earn you a free t-shirt for completing it!

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