Tuesday, March 20, 2007

My Favorite Place

Blue skies, 70-degree temperatures, and a sense that I've not been living too healthily lately got me out to one of my favorite spots in Atlanta for the first time in ages.

Sweetwater Creek State Park is surprisingly little-known (at least in my circles). That may be because of its location -- it's out west of town, and to get there, you've got to navigate through an odd conglomeration of highway, car dealerships, featureless subdivisions, and industrial parks.

Once through that unappealing mix, though, it's an amazing setting. Hilly ground, running alongside a creek and (artificial, I think) lake, lots of trees, very quiet (aside from the occasional burst of gunfire -- there's a military range located unfortunately close).

The highlight for me is the remnants of the old New Manchester Manufacturing Company. The sides of the creek were, 150 years ago, lined by a company town for this mill -- but in the March to Atlanta during the Civil War, it was burned to the ground. Now, only the skeleton of the mill remains, and a bit of the artificial structures put in place to guide the water.

Aside from that building, and the odd visitor (I saw about six people on the trail this morning -- well above average), you get the sense that you're seeing a bit of untamed Georgia, with rolling rapids, dense trees, birds chirping. Straight out of "Deliverance"!

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