Vogel State Park
Vogel State Park is located at the base of Blood Mountain in the Chattahoochee National Forest about halfway between Blairsville and the City of Helen on U.S. Highway 19/129. At 2,500 ft. above sea level, Vogel State Park is situated at one of the highest altitudes found in any Georgia state park and it is also one of Georgia’s most popular state parks. Outdoor activities that can be enjoyed in Vogel State Park include boating, swimming, fishing, camping, hiking and backpacking through 17 miles of trails.
At the center of Vogel State Park is the 22 acre Lake Trahlyta, which was named after the Cherokee Indian Princess Trahlyta who was buried a few miles from the park at Stonepile Gap. Lake Trahlyta has a swimming beach and a boat launch for non-motorized watercraft. Pedal boat rentals are available during swim season and fishing is allowed with a fishing license. Lake Trahlyta is a breeding ground for bass and bream and it is also stocked during each trout season with about 5,000 trout.
Vogel State Park became one of Georgia’s first state parks when the Georgia State Park System was founded in 1931. The 233 acres of land contained in Vogel State Park were donated to the State of Georgia in 1927 by Augustus Vogel and Fred Vogel, Jr. from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The Vogel family’s fortune came from the Phister Vogel Leather Company, a Wisconsin tannery that used bark from oak and hemlock trees on thousands of acres of land in North Georgia owned by the Vogel family. During World War I, a synthetic method for tanning leather was invented and after the demand for natural oak and hemlock bark ceased, the Vogel’s donated their land to Georgia in order to create a state park.
Vogel State Park contains many streams, a waterfall, campsites, cabins, a general store, a miniature golf course and the Civilian Conservation Corps Museum. Lake Trahlyta was created by the Civilian Conservation Corps when they built a dam across Wolf Creek during the 1930’s and the museum commemorates their work. The CCC workers also built the first cabins, picnic areas and camping grounds at Vogel State Park, 7485 Vogel State Park Road, Blairsville, 706-745-2628.
Real estate in areas near Vogel State Park
Homes and properties in Blairsville and Helen, which is often referred to as the Alpine Village of Helen, are located in beautiful rural areas where population densities are as low as 800 people per square mile. Blairsville contains many ranch style houses in quiet and well maintained neighborhoods that are close to the center of town. Helen features more upscale homes because it is a tourist destination. In the outlying countryside, modern log cabin style homes with mountain views on 1 or more acres of land range in price from $250,000 to $500,000.
A significant amount of undeveloped land in Blairsville is already zoned for development. More upscale residential developments are anticipated in the future because the demand for high value properties in the North Georgia Mountains has steadily increased. The demand for commercial real estate is strong in both Blairsville and Helen because the large number of tourists creates profitable economic potential for businesses that are located in the cities.
At 2,500 ft. above sea level, the mountains maintain a cool evening temperature during the summer, camping conditions are ideal and visitors can enjoy swimming at the scenic beach on Lake Trahlyta. Vogel State Park has 103 tent, trailer and RV campsites, 18 walk-in campsites and 35 cottages for rent. 95 of the campsites have electrical and water hookups. The park also contains 4 picnic shelters, a group camping facility, a Pioneer Campground and several primitive backwoods campground areas.
Hotels, motels, bed and breakfast inns, and private cabin rentals are available in Blairsville and Helen. A limited number of food and non-food items can be purchased at Vogel State Park’s general store and supermarkets are located in both Blairsville and Helen. The Alpine village of Helen is a big tourist attraction and its Oktoberfest celebration is famous throughout the South so Helen contains many excellent hotels and more than 40 restaurants.
Vogel State Park is renowned for hiking because it contains a variety of trails including the 4-mile Bear Hair Gap Loop and the challenging Coosa Backcountry Trail, a strenuous 12.5 mile loop that climbs Coosa Bald and Slaughter Mountain. There is also an easy 1-mile trail that leads around Lake Trahlyta, the moderately difficult 4-mile Bear Hair Trail, and the more strenuous Coosa Backcountry Trail, which leads up toward Blood Mountain and the Appalachian Trail near Neal’s Gap.
Annual events held in Vogel State Park include the Spring Wildflower Walk, the Kids Fishing Rodeo, the Independence Day Bicycle Parade and the Mountain Music and Arts & Craft Festival held in late summer. One of the most popular events is the Fall Hoedown held in late October. The Fall Hoedown features hayrides, campfires and dancing, and a professional storyteller for children at a bonfire party.