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Cherokee Ridge Alpine Trail is must see this year

Published 11:22am Friday, November 9, 2012

Cherokee Ridge Alpine Trail is a must see this season. The fall foliage is total eye candy. Bright reds, vibrant oranges, and sunny yellows bathe the lakeside. Every aspect of nature feels emphasized.

John and I joined Paddle Lake Martin last Sunday for a 7 mile hike. The trailhead is located just past Martin Dam. Turn off of Highway 50 onto Overlook and you will not miss it. There is a parking lot and picnic tables.

Last Sunday was slightly overcast and about 70 degrees-perfect for a hike. The view at the trailhead is breathtaking and the perfect opportunity for photos. If a man is planning to propose in the next week, this would be a perfect spot!

Our group of seven plus two dogs set off and as we passed beneath the trail sign, I felt exhilarated being outside. A person must decompress from their weekly grind and get some fresh air. Our pace was fairly fast and we finished in about two hours.

Although challenging, all ages can do this trail. Dogs handle it well, even our couch potato Great Dane, Mona. There are walking sticks available.  I almost chose not to utilize a walking stick, but I was grateful that I did when using it to brace myself up and down several steep inclines.

The trail snakes along the edge of the lake at several points and from here you can spot great potential campsites.

Dress accordingly. I recommend wearing athletic wear. I personally prefer the dry power shirts because they do not chafe like some cottons will, especially over that amount of time. Tennis shoes or a hiking boot-sneaker are a must. I learned the hard way that high socks are best after my low socks slipped and I gained a blister.

Invest in a Camel pack to wear on your back. It is much more efficient to drink water the entire time.

At the end of the hike, treat yourself to a Snickers. Now go forth and get outside this weekend!

Howell works as an advertising representative for Tallapoosa Publishers, Inc., in addition to writing this column. Contact Howell at to keep her In the Loop of events.