Raven Cliff Falls camping
This trail is one of North Georgia’s most popular camping destinations. Trailhead campsites offer fantastic stream-side camping just steps from the car, and a fantastic base camp for hiking the Raven Cliff Falls Trail during the day. The trail is also dotted with many backpacking campsites on the creek’s level banks, offering a little more solitude for campers willing to backpack it in.
Black bears frequent this wilderness area. Keep all food items and fragrant cosmetics out of reach in a bear canister: many years ago, we lost our camp stove, food and cookware to a trio of bears in a traditionally-hung bear bag along this trail.
Campsites are free and first-come, first-claimed. Pack out everything you pack in: this is one of Georgia’s most beautiful Wilderness areas, so please, please leave no trace. (What is Wilderness, and why is it important? Read more in our guide to Wilderness areas in the South.)
Once you get into the parking lot it’s confusing to find the trail head because there is no sign to it. But once you find it you can camp on any part of the trail. I just walked into the woods near my car and found a fire pit and set up near a creek and oh my gosh it was really something else. I’d recommend to walk off trail in the woods near the parking lot because there is little to no foot traffic there during the day considering it’s not part of the trail.
Raven cliff is a great place to walk in Camp. There are tons of sites along the path to the falls and in a back area by the parking lot. You could go with a large group or a small tent and I feel like there would always be a site available. Keep in mind there are restrooms at the parking lot but no other facilities. I did not have cell phone service while I was there. There is a lot of bear activity here, so make sure you don't have any food or toiletries in your tent. We saw a cub and a mom while we were there. Many sites are by the river, it is quiet and nice to be able to walk to the falls from your site. Even in the summer, it was nice and cool by the river.
We camped 2 nights in the very first camp site, our last night camping we were awakened by a mama bear and her 2 cubs. We are seasoned campers therefore we had no trash, food, cooking gear, or toiletries in our site. We did have 2 water bottles that she found. She and her cubs wandered up the trail just out of sight for a few minutes but she returned and came right up to our tent. So be forewarned there is an active mama and 2 cubs in this area. We did let the people down at smith gall woods know so that they can pass the message along to the park ranger.
This is a scenic easy-moderate level trail. It follows a creek that has open flat land next to it of pine needles. Perfect for camping, having a midhike fire, or just stopping to dip your toes the water and rest. At waterfall at the end requires scrambling over boulders, but is worth the climb. Beautiful fall nestled in the crevices of the mountain. Don’t forget the $5 donation to maintain the trail, due at parking lot.
So far, this is our favorite car campsite in Georgia. Take the gravel road past the Raven Cliff Trail parking lot to find many great campsites. A few are available before you get to a water crossing, and there are at least a dozen more after the water but only cross in a AWD/truck/etc. We did it once in a sedan but it hadn’t rained in a while. Most are along a water source with lots of trees for hammocks, quite secluded and peaceful in the national forest. It’s all very primitive with no amenities except some makeshift fire rings, but sites are close to your car. Two great hikes in the area, Raven Cliff and Dukes Creek falls. Please pack out your trash! Get there early to claim the best sites if it’s a nice weekend.
My wife and I have been to Raven Cliffs a few times but never camped. Well we finally decided to do an overnighter and it was well worth the blowout we had on the interstate and the creepy tow truck driver and the Walmart tire center that was closed but fixed our tire anyway! But Raven cliffs offers both walk-in campsite and a lot of hike to camp sites. The trail has some great views and different terrain from small creek crossings to some steep hills and valleys. There is a restroom and trash receptacles at the trailhead and they are very close to the walk-in camp sites. There is plenty of room for group camping at both the walk-in and hike to sites. The trail is also pet friendly so you get to see a lot of pups on the trail. If you want a walk-in campsite and it’s the weekend, you better get there early. We arrived at dusk on a Friday and got the last walk-in site available. Overall, I highly recommend coming here and staying a night or two! Love this place.
great packing trail and place to explore.
This place is one of the best and most beautiful places to back pack! with several waterfalls within just a 5 mile hike its a great place to camp and explore. also great tent camping areas to set up camp at! water is no problem with the entire trail being directly on a solid flowing stream.
You can camp anywhere you want on the trails! Load in light if you are planning to camp near the falls though!
This area can be deceiving as many people have to be rescued from the falls on a regular basis from not recognizing the danger. Camping is good with access to water but be aware or your surrounds around the falls.