Don Carter State Park

Don Carter State Park
Reservations 800-864-7275
Park 678-450-7726

 

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"The Chattahoochee River, flowing from the north Georgia Mountains, meets Lake Lanier at Don Carter State Park, creating a unique opportunity for recreation and outdoor appreciation on the northern edge of metro-Atlanta."

Don Carter is Georgia’s newest state park, as well as the first state park on 38,000-acre Lake Lanier. Situated on the north end of the reservoir, the park offers outstanding recreation for water lovers.  Guests can stay cool at a large, sand swimming beach with bath house. Boat ramps provide quick access to the lake, while a multi-use trail welcomes hikers and bikers to explore the hardwood forest.

This new park offers several choices for overnight getaways as well. Two-bedroom cabins are perched on wooded hillsides near the lake. One campground is designed specifically for RVs, while another primitive camping area is just for tents and hammocks. The campground and cottage loop is gated, providing access to overnight guests.

The park is named in honor of real-estate executive Don Carter who served on the Georgia Department of Natural Resources board for 29 years and worked to establish Lake Lanier’s first state park.

$5 parking. Annual passes available.
GeorgiaStateParks.org/DonCarter

Park Hours:

7 a.m.–10 p.m.

Office Hours:

8 a.m.–5 p.m.

Accommodations & Facilities:

• 1,316 Acres
• 8 Cottages ($200–$250) — #1 is dog friendly ($45/dog, 2 max)
• 44 RV Campsites ($30)
• 12 Primitive "Walk-in" Tent Sites ($20)
• 4 Picnic Shelters ($50)
• 38,000-Acre Lake Lanier
• 10.4 Miles of Shoreline
• Boat Ramps
• Docks
• Fish-Cleaning Station
• Sand Beach

Things To Do & See:

• Kayak, Stand-Up Paddleboard & Aquacycle Rentals — seasonal
• Fishing
• Boating
• Swimming
• Hiking & Biking — 4 miles of trails
• Picnicking
• Playgrounds

Nearby Attractions:

• Chattahoochee Golf Club
• Chattahoochee River
Dahlonega Gold Museum & Historic Downtown
• Elachee Nature Science Center
• Flowery Branch Historic Downtown Shops & Dining
• Francis Meadows Aquatic Center
• Gainesville Main Street & Historic Downtown Square
• Jaemor Farm Market
Lake Lanier Area Attractions
• Lake Lanier Islands Resort
• Lake Lanier Olympic Venue
• Lakeshore Mall
• North Georgia Canopy Tours
• Northeast Georgia History Center
• Quinlan Visual Arts Center
• Road Atlanta
Smithgall Woods State Park


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Events
Fishing at the Lake (Silver in the Park Ages 50+)
Wednesday, Aug 3, 2016 9 AM
Fish from the pier or the shore. Fishing poles and bait provided. No experience necessary. Fishing license required. Meet at the Visitor Center 15 min before the program starts. Wear light clothes and bring water.  $5 plus $5 parking. 678-450-7726.
Get Outdoors Georgia
Introduction to Kayaking
Friday, Aug 5, 2016 6 PM to 7:30 PM
Friday, Aug 12, 2016 6 PM to 7:30 PM
Learn the basics of kayaking on a safe and peaceful section of the lake. Open to people 16 years and older who can swim and are new to kayaking. Equipment provided. Bring water and sunscreen. Meet at the Boat Ramp. Pre-registration required.  $25 plus $5 parking. 678-450-7726.
Get Outdoors Georgia
Aprende a Remar en Kayak
Saturday, Aug 6, 2016 4:30 PM to 6 PM
Saturday, Aug 13, 2016 4:30 PM to 6 PM
Aprende los movimientos basicos de kayaking en una section tranquila y segura de el lago. Para mayores de 16 años que pueden nadar y sin conocimiento de kayaking. Nos reuniremos en la rampa para botes. Traer protector solar, sombrero, agua y refrigerio. Llamar para más información y para registrarse.  $25 plus $5 parking. 678-897-8317.
Get Outdoors Georgia
Night Hike
Saturday, Aug 6, 2016 8:30 PM
Saturday, Aug 27, 2016 8 PM
Let’s look for phosphorescent organisms, listen for owls, and enjoy a frog chorus. You never know what we might find in the dark. Wear closed-toe shoes. Bring a flashlight, insect repellent, and water. Meet at the boat use area.  $3 plus $5 parking. 678-450-7726.
Get Outdoors Georgia
Early Morning Kayak
Sunday, Aug 7, 2016 7 AM
Sunday, Aug 21, 2016 7:30 AM
Enjoy a peaceful morning paddle along the shore to watch for birds and wildlife. Open to anyone who can swim; kids must be 6 or older and with an adult. Bring your own kayak/canoe or rent here, limited rentals available, so register in advance. Meet at the boat ramp, bring water and binoculars.  $15 with personal kayak. $25 with rental. $5 parking. 678-450-7726.
Get Outdoors Georgia
Twilight on Aquacycles (Paddleboats)
Wednesday, Aug 10, 2016 7 PM to 8:30 PM
Enjoy sunset on the lake and get exercise at the same time using an aquacycle. Each boat holds up to 4 people (2 peddlers). Meet at the beach kiosk. Bring water, sunscreen and a flashlight.  $5 plus $5 parking. 678-450-7726.
Get Outdoors Georgia
Volunteer Work Day
Saturday, Aug 13, 2016 9 AM
Saturday, Sep 10, 2016 9 AM
Come join the Friends of Don Carter State Park every second Saturday of the month to participate in a variety of volunteer projects. Meet at park's visitor center. 678-450-7726.
Get Outdoors Georgia
Twilight Lake Lanier Paddle
Saturday, Aug 13, 2016 7 PM to 8:30 PM
Friday, Aug 26, 2016 6:30 PM to 8 PM
Friday, Sep 2, 2016 6:30 PM to 8 PM
More Dates...
Join a ranger-led sunset outing to look for wading birds and raptors. Open to anyone who can swim. Kids must be 8 or older and with an adult. Bring your own kayak/canoe or rent here, limited rentals available, so register in advance. Meet at the boat ramp, bring water and a flashlight.  $15 with personal kayak/canoe - $25 with rental. $5 parking. 678-450-7726.
Get Outdoors Georgia
Hike with the Ranger (Silver in the Park - ages 50+)
Wednesday, Aug 17, 2016 9 AM
Join the naturalist for an easy hike to learn about native plants and wildlife. If you want, bring a picnic lunch and enjoy the park. Meet at the primitive camp parking lot. Wear closed-toe shoes and bring water. $5 parking. 678-450-7726.
Get Outdoors Georgia
Full Moon on Aquacycles
Thursday, Aug 18, 2016 8:15 PM to 9:45 PM
Enjoy the moonlight on the lake and get some exercise at the same time using an aquacycle at this evening event. Each boat holds up to 4 people (2 can pedal). Bring a flashlight and water. Meet at the beach kiosk. Register in advance.  $5 plus $5 parking. 678-450-7726.
Get Outdoors Georgia
Full Moon Paddle
Friday, Aug 19, 2016 7:45 PM to 9:45 PM
Enjoy a relaxing paddle on Lake Lanier led by the naturalist as the full moon reflects off the water. Space is limited, so register in advance. No pets; kids must be 8 or older. Meet at the boat ramp. Bring a flash light, insect repellent, and water.  $15 with personal kayak/canoe - $25 with rental. $5 parking. 678-450-7726.
Get Outdoors Georgia
Almost Full Moon Paddle
Saturday, Aug 20, 2016 7:45 AM to 9:45 PM
Enjoy a relaxing paddle on Lake Lanier led by the naturalist as the full moon still reflects off the water. Space is limited, so register in advance. No pets; kids must be 8 or older. Meet at the boat ramp. Bring a flash light, insect repellent, and water.  $15 with personal kayak/canoe. $25 with rental. $5 parking. 678-450-7726.
Get Outdoors Georgia
Aquacycles (Paddleboats) - Silver in the Park (Ages 50+)
Wednesday, Aug 24, 2016 10 AM
Enjoy the lake and get some exercise at the same time using an aquacycle. Each boat holds up to 4 people (2 peddlers). Meet at beach kiosk. Bring water and sunscreen.  $5 plus $5 parking. 678-450-7726.
Get Outdoors Georgia
Lake Lanier Shore Sweep - Your State Parks Day
Saturday, Sep 24, 2016 8 AM to 1 PM
Join Lake Lanier Association's annual Shore Sweep. This event is organized for the benefit of Lake Lanier and all who enjoy its beauty. In past years Shore Sweep has had over 1,000 volunteers. Wear gloves and clothes you don't mind getting dirty. Meet at the park office. 678-450-7726.
Get Outdoors Georgia
Chattahoochee Mountain Music Festival
Saturday, Sep 24, 2016 12 PM
Join us for an afternoon in the park with live old time music, arts and crafts vendors and good food. This will be Don Carter State Park's third annual Chattahoochee Mountain Music Festival. $5 parking. 678-450-7726.
Address/Directions
Don Carter State Park
5000 North Browning Bridge Road
Gainesville, GA 30506
Hall County


GPS Coordinates:

N 34.3876220 | W -83.7464620
Located northeast of Gainesville, on the north side of the lake. From Clarks Bridge Road, go south on N. Browning Bridge Road. At the “Y,” take the left fork and continue for one-half mile to the park entrance.


BLUE-A-1
Don Carter State Park
5000 North Browning Bridge Road
Gainesville, GA 30506 View Details


  34.387622
Don Carter State Park