Leisure

Plan a Georgia Spring Wildflower Hike

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In Georgia, longer days, warmer weather and eye-catching blooms like dogwoods, azaleas and irises are sure signs of spring. To celebrate the season, Georgia State Parks are hosting a series of guided wildflower hikes throughout the state to nature enthusiasts a close-up look at these spectacular blooms.

Spring bloom hikers will look for Canada Violet, Trout Lily, Wild Azalea, Spring”#Beauty, Foamflower, Trillium, Indian Pink, Buckeye and many more native blooms.#The wildflower hikes are hosted by state parks that have a large number of native plants, including Sweetwater Creek, Amicalola Falls, Unicoi, Tallulah Gorge and Mistletoe.

For those interested in exploring the backcountry trails on their own, Providence Canyon, Cloudland Canyon and Panola Mountain state parks also offer popular wildflower viewing spots. Panola Mountain features the rare Red Diamorpha and magnificent Atamasco Lily, and Providence Canyon is home to the Big Leaf Magnolia, which are awe-inspiring at 24 inches wide.

For details on Georgia”s State Park wildflower hikes and other events, visit www.GeorgiaStateParks.org or contact the parks directly. A $5 parking fee is charged and some hikes are free.# Here are just a few of the wildflower hikes currently scheduled.

2011 Spring Wildflower Hikes

Early Spring Wildflower Hike

Sunday, March 20, 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Sunday, March 27, 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Sunday, April 3, 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Sweetwater Creek State Park – Lithia Springs

This 2-mile ranger-led hike will be moderately strenuous and will pass through a variety of wildflower habitats and beautiful areas. Meet in the Interpretive Center. $5 plus $5 parking. (770) 732-5871.

Spring Wildflower Hike

Saturday, April 9, 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Sweetwater Creek State Park – Lithia Springs

This will be a moderately strenuous 3-mile guided hike through a variety of beautiful wildflower habitats. We will be leaving from the Visitors Center in the nature trails parking lot. $5 plus $5 parking. (770) 732-5871

Spring Wildflower Fest

Saturday, April 16 through Sunday, April 17, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

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