Today, I slipped across the border and had my first hike from my new book “Hiking Georgia”. Providence Canyon was a state park but is now listed as an outdoor recreational area. Regardless, the facilities and trails were in great shape.
Providence Canyon has two trails. We took the 6.7 mile back country red trail. They also have a 3 mile white trail that skips the back country but gets you to the canyon itself. Wear appropriate footwear for this hike. The first mile of this trail was literally down a stream. The water was just over the surface and the footing was firm but it was a little odd walking through running water.
The red trail eventually leaves the creek and circles through a spectacular forest. The trail is wide and clear. The towering hardwoods provided nice shade for the entire hike. Most of this trail is flat either at the top or bottom of the canyon. There are a couple of very step inclines in or out of the canyon, just enough to keep the hike interesting. We were credited with 28 flights of stairs on this hike. The back country portion of this trail also had several nice camping areas for those looking to get away.
The best views and photo opportunities came in the last mile of the hike. Ironically, this mile is close to the entry road making it possible to see the canyon without hiking.
I was impressed with the traffic on the trail. It was a beautiful day and a lot of people were on the trail. The picnic areas were also being used by groups. I would rate this hike in the top quartile of my hikes. Providence Canyon is worth a stop.
For dinner, we circled back through Columbus, Georgia and stopped at the Cannon Brew Pub. This restaurant was in a restored brick building downtown. The food here was a mix of American fare and British pub food. We all enjoyed our meals. Give them a try when in town.
A nice side trip in Columbus would be to the National Infantry Museum just inside Fort Benning. We didn’t have time today, but the museum is very nice and worth your time to visit.