July 2022

Cochran Shoals Unit of the CRNRA 

It’s no secret, one of Atlanta’s favorite parks is the Cochran Shoals unit. No matter the season, you’ll find Atlantans running, biking, hiking, walking, fishing, bird watching, having a picnic, exploring or on the water paddling or just floating.

The park has multiple entrances - the Interstate North entrance by I-285, the parking area at the end of Columns Drive, and the Sope Creek entrance off Paper Mill. Also, overflow parking for the Interstate North entrance is across the bridge at the Powers Island unit. It’s a short walk over the river from Powers Island to Cochran Shoals.  

The Interstate North & Columns Drive entrances provide easy access to a 3.1mile fitness loop that meanders along the Chattahoochee before looping back through a grassy field. Along the way are three river overlooks to take a break or cast a line. More challenging trails for trail running or hiking can be found in the Sope Creek area. 

The Sope Creek entrance is an entry point to both mixed-use and pedestrian-only trails. You’ll likely see mountain bikers enjoying the miles of challenging single track. Other trails take you around Sibley Pond, to the stacked-stone remains of a paper mill destroyed in the Civil War, or through wooded paths that just keep going. 

Finally, the 3rd Saturday of each month there is a volunteer trail day. Thank you to all the volunteers who help the NPS maintain this well-loved park. Learn how you can volunteer by clicking here

From the Cochran Shoals fitness loop to the mixed-use trails in Sope Creek, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Cochran Shoals trail maps can be found here.

Bikers and Hikers Share the Trail

The multi-use trails at Cochran Shoals are shared with walkers, runners and bikers and as such, it’s important to follow trail etiquette. Here are a few easy rules for both bikers and hikers.

Go The Posted Direction: Bikers and pedestrians go in opposite directions on the trail based on the day of the week. Please refer to the signs at the entrance to the multi-use trails to determine which direction you should be walking, running or riding.

Yield Appropriately: Do your utmost to let your fellow trail users know you're coming. In general, strive to make each pass a safe and courteous one. 

Listen Up: It is advisable that you do not use head phones or ear buds on the multi-use trails to assure you can hear approaching runners or bikers coming from behind or in front of you. 

Cochran Shoals has 9.4 miles of multi-use trails for bikers and pedestrians. Runners and walkers always have the option to also use the 10.8 miles of pedestrian-only trails in the unit. 

Click here for a full list of rules and a map of the multi-use trails in Cochran Shoals.  

Text to "Ride"

Before you head out on your bike check the status of the trails. The Cochran Shoals multi-use trails are closed to bikes for 24 hours after rain. Check the current trail conditions by texting "Ride" to 770-727-5061 or scan the QR Code to the left.

Help CNPC Match A Generous $25,000 Donation For Bridge Repairs

The Chattahoochee National Park Conservancy is currently fundraising to repair three bridges in the CRNRA - two in the East Palisades unit and one in the Bowmans Island unit. 

The Prestidigitator Foundation committed to a generous $25,000 matching donation for bridge repairs. Please make a matching donation today to help us turn this $25,000 into $50,000 for bridge repairs. 

Photo of damaged bridge at East Palisades


People of the Park: Alex Hinerfeld 

This month we had the opportunity to talk with Alex Hinerfeld, a CNPC board member. In addition to helping out with volunteer activities (he’s excellent with a chainsaw), Alex is the webmaster for the new CRNRA website:  https://crnra.vip/ .

What is your favorite CRNRA park?

I have to say Gold Branch, it’s close to home, but it feels more remote than it actually is. Also, previously I joined one of the Walk & Talk hikes there and gained a new appreciation for the area.

Do you have a National Park on your bucket list to visit?

That’s easy, Glacier National Park https://www.nps.gov/glac/index.htm/index.htm. I enjoy backcountry camping and hear that Glacier is absolutely beautiful. Some of the best spots require a multi-day hike so we’ve applied several times for a backcountry camping reservation. No luck yet, but we’ll keep trying.

How did you first get involved with the CRNRA and CNPC? 

I got involved with the CRNRA in 2016 when I chaperoned a senior service day with Centennial High School. We did a trash pickup at Vickery Creek. It was a fun day out in the woods and I was hooked. A few years later I got involved with CNPC when I needed some funding for the initial development of the CRNRA.VIP hours tracking website. I never received any money from CNPC, but they sure have gotten a lot from me over the years.

Have you always enjoyed the outdoors? 

Absolutely I grew up in Atlanta and spent a lot of time in the park and on the river. As a kid I went to the Deep Woods camp in Brevard NC. At camp we spent five weeks hiking, camping, paddling and just being outside. 

Finally, do you have a favorite book or movie to recommend?

It has been years since I’ve read the book, but I really enjoyed Into Thin Air, a book about a failed Mt Everest attempt. I have been up Kilimanjaro but that is as high as I am willing to go.

Photo of Alex Hinerfeld in Patagonia 

Upcoming Events: 

Dragonfly Discovery 

July 9, 12  - 2 PM


Island Ford Pollinator Garden Volunteer Morning

July 11, 9 AM - 12 PM


Trail Day at Columns Drive 

July  16, 8:45 AM - 1 PM


Hot Yoga & Cool Drinks - A yoga social with NOC 

August 18, 6 - 9 PM


Shout Out to CNPC Community Partner

Floor & Decor 

We are thankful for our Community Partners like Floor & Decor whose donations help us support our local National Park the CRNRA. Floor & Decor's headquarters are located next to Cochran Shoals where they recently volunteered to work on the trails. 

If your company is interested in making a donation to become a Community Partner or host a group volunteer event please email Martha.Seabrook@ChattahoocheeParks.org 

Follow us on social and stay updated on all park activities!

Become a CNPC member or donate today!

YOU can help us achieve our vision of an inspired and thriving community of support for the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area.

CNPC is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. We are proud to support our Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area, a unit of the national park system managed by the National Park Service.

Chattahoochee National Park Conservancy
P.O. Box 769332, Roswell, GA 30076
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