Talladega National Forest

Quick Facts

Talladega National Forest

Alabama

(334) 832-4470

Map

Things To Do

Overview

The largest of the national forests in Alabama, Talladega National Forest spans almost 400,000 acres split into three districts. With so much land area, Talladega is sure to offer any sort of recreational activity visitors could desire.

In the Oakmulgee Ranger District, the Payne Lake Recreation Area offers outdoor enthusiasts solitude, a scenic lake, and picturesque campsites. The lake is a great place to go fishing or to go for a swim from the two swimming beaches. For those looking for primitive camping, eight walk-in hunter camps are available for year-round primitive camping.

The 7,245-acre Cheaha Wilderness is located in the Shoal Creek Ranger District. Cheaha's high elevations afford hikers numerous overlooks with panoramic views of east-central Alabama. The Pinhoti Trail, a scenic trail that travels for more than 100 miles, travels through the Shoal Creek district. Visitors looking to camp have plenty of options in this district, including two developed campgrounds.

Visitors to the Talladega Ranger District will appreciated the numerous hiking trails and the primitive campgrounds. ATV and motorcycle, and mountain bike enthusiast should check out the Kentuck ORV Trail for an exciting adventure.

Map of Talladega Forest

Latitude, Longitude: 33.316260, -86.022375

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Activities

  • Boating

    The forest has numerous lakes which allow boating, although with electric motors only. Boaters should check out the Coleman Lake Recreation Area in the Shoal Creek district and Lake Virginia in the Talladega district.

  • Bicycling

    Mountain bikers are welcome on the Kentuck ORV Trail, which has has four loops totaling 23 miles. Some of the trails have easy sections with gentle grades, sweeping turns and fairly smooth surfaces with few obstacles. Other trails are more difficult, with steeper grades, tight turns, sections of rough terrain, rocks and log obstacles.

  • Camping

    All three ranger districts offer developed campgrounds as well as primitive camping.

  • Fishing

    Several lakes are scattered throughout the national forest, many of which offer great fishing for bass, bream, and catfish. Lakes Chinnabee, Virginia, and Wills all have boat launch ramps, although gas motors are not allowed.

  • Hiking

    Hiking trails abound in the forest, but hikers looking for real solitude should head for the Cheaha Wilderness in the Shoal Creek district. Elevations within the Cheaha Wilderness range from 1,100 feet, along the bottom of the eastern slopes, to Odum Point with an elevation of 2,342 feet. Over 1,000 acres are above 2,000 feet in elevation affording hikers the challenge and solitude that is a vital part of the true wilderness experience.

  • Horseback Riding

    The Warden Station Horse Camp is convenient for horseback riders. There are 45 sites with sanitary facilities, and the camp is open year-round.

  • Off Highway Vehicles

    Kentuck ORV Trail has riding for everyone on wheels, whether the vehicle of choice is an ATV, a motorcycle, or a mountain bike. The easy to moderate trail has 4 loops totaling 23 miles. Some of the trails have easy sections with gentle grades, sweeping turns and fairly smooth surfaces with few obstacles. Other trails are more difficult, with steeper grades, tight turns, sections of rough terrain, rocks and log obstacles.

  • Picnicking

    Many picnic areas are spread throughout the forest. The picnic area in Payne Lake Recreation Area has scenic views of the lake and surrounding forest.

  • RVing

    All three ranger districts offer developed campgrounds as well as primitive camping.

  • Water Sports

    Several of the recreation areas have swimming beaches, including the Payne Lake area and the Coleman Lake area.

Phone Numbers

Primary

(334) 832-4470

Links