There’s just a lot to love about the Vickery Creek Trail at Roswell Mill. From the covered bridge to the civil war mill ruins up to the towering waterfall that pours from a historic spillway dam. The place is just downright gorgeous with it’s scenic sights, shades, and in-town hike or moderate trail run.
The Vickery Creek Trail is one of the best hike trail in the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area parks near Atlanta, though its trails don’t follow the banks of the Chattahoochee River. The Vickery Creek trail passes through beautiful, rolling forest, along the way you'd catch a view of the rushing dam waterfall from a steep rock bluff.
The trail departs a trailhead on Riverside Road in Roswell, hiking upstream along Vickery Creek and hanging a right at the first trail intersection. The trail switches back, passing through a series well-marked intersections and rolling elevation, following the outer loop trail at each intersection.
The trail rolls elevation through a young, ferny forest, crossing several small creeks. It’s a well-worn trail, and would be fairly easy to follow. Maps and numbered waypoints mark each intersection, but without a GPS and a little patience, the trails can be tricky to follow.
The trail reaches a modern spillway at 1.7 miles, waypoint 26 on the park map. Continuing the outer loop, the trail arcs along a wide meander of Vickery Creek, rising high above the creek. At waypoint 27, the hike veers east, and then turns south at waypoint 25 at 2.3 miles. The hike crosses a wood bridge at 2.5 miles, the sound of falling water echoing through the forest. At waypoint 16, the hike hangs a right to visit the southern bank of the Roswell Mill waterfall from a tall bluff alongside its rushing, tumbling waters. This spillway dam was a valuable asset to the South during the Civil War, having powered the Roswell Mill downstream.
Departing the waterfall, the hike treks to waypoint 11, reaching the covered bridge at 3 miles. Reaching the end of the covered bridge, the hike hangs a right, following the trail eastbound and passing a historic brick machine shop. The trail reaches the ruins of the old Roswell Mill, looping around the mill, the old rusted mill chase, and catching an up-close view of the dam waterfall and spillway waterfall from Vickery Creek’s northern bank.
Vickery Creek, also known as Big Creek, flows over a rocky, grassy creek bed downstream from the waterfall. It’s a great place to relax, soak up the beauty of the falls, and watch for wildlife: heron and geese are commonly sighted here.