I have been coming to Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park ever since I was a kid, and it occurred to me that maybe I take it’s beauty and its rich history for granted. It is a 2,965 acre National Battlefield that preserves a Civil War battleground of the Atlanta Campaign. Opposing forces maneuvered and fought here from June 19, 1864 until July 2, 1864.
The park’s now-beautiful landscape was the site of a bloody, muddy, tree-barren Civil War battle. Entrenched Confederate soldiers at Kennesaw Mountain fought approaching Union troops in the war’s Atlanta campaign. 3000 men lost their lives on these mountains, hills and fields during a grueling 14 day battle. To learn more about the battle at Kennesaw Mountain, visit http://www.civilwar.org/battlefields/kennesaw-mountain.html?tab=facts.
Today cannons, earthen fortifications, trenches and monuments are the few visual reminders of the battle 150 years ago.
Since it’s only 30 minutes from downtown Atlanta, the trails are very busy, especially on weekends. The park has 18 miles of trails and I come here often to do training hikes. Scenes from the movie “A Walk in the Woods” based on the book by Bill Bryson were filmed here.
My favorite loop hike here is 6 miles and goes up both Kennesaw Mountain and Little Kennesaw Mountain. The view of Little Kennesaw from halfway down Kennesaw Mountain…
There is no shortage of wildlife in this park! It has been named one of the best places for bird watching and there are guided bird walks throughout the year. Deer, box turtles, possums, and even fox can be seen on the trails.
For a great after hike lunch, visit the nearby Marietta Square where there are many restaurant options- http://www.mariettasquare.com/eat/. I recommend the chicken pot pie at Douceur de France!
For more on planning your visit to Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park, visit https://www.nps.gov/kemo/index.htm.