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REGISTRATION REQUIRED: Once you've reviewed the event details, and decided you'd like to join us, you MUST sign up at the bottom of this page.

Dockery Lake to Preachers Rock

The Basics:
Event Type:Hike
Event Location: Cleveland, GA
Date(s) & Time:Sat, Nov 12 2022  9:00 am >> Sat, Nov 12 2022 2:30 pm  (Carpool Departure: 7:30 am   *log in for location*)
Registration Opens: Thu, Nov 3 2022 7:00 pm
Registration Cut Off: Fri, Nov 11 2022 10:00 am
Event Duration:5 Hours 30 Minutes
Difficulty Rating:D4: Moderate to Difficult
Distance:11 Miles
Trip Leader(s):
Greg Pharo
Email Trip Leader(s)
You must be logged in to get the Trip Leader contact information.
Member Cost:None

Participant Info:
Who's Invited: Members Only, 21 And Older Only
Maximum Group Size:10
Minimum Group Size:3
Number Registered So Far: 10 / 0 (To see who's signed up, log in to the Member Area)
Are Dogs Permitted: Yes


Join me as we enjoy a hike starting at one of the nicest mountain lakes in northern Georgia! We begin at Dockery Lake Recreational Area, 12 miles north of Dahlonega. Winding our way around the shoreline, we'll trek on the Dockery Lake Trail as it passes a small waterfall/spillway and descends into a charming valley by Pigeon Roost Creek. Here we'll pass through hemlock forests and rock hop across tributary creeks.

Next, we'll hike upward to intersect the Appalachian Trail around mile 3.5. Turning left (SOBO) on the AT, we'll continue hiking for nearly 2 miles until we pass Big Cedar Mountain. We then reach a scenic overlook called Preacher's Rock. It is one of the premier vistas on the Georgia AT and is a wonderful spot for lunch! After enjoying lunch and the expansive panoramic views we'll retrace our steps back to the Dockery Lake parking lot.

The total distance is about 10.9 miles and vertical rise is almost 2,400 feet. We'll hike at a moderate pace of ~2.5 mph moving speed. We will hike as a group and stop at all intersections to ensure we all stay together.

This is a challenging mountain trek. Participants should have recent D4 or higher hiking experience or equivalent.  If you don't have recent AOC D4+ experience then the trip leader will contact you to determine if you should participate. 

Required Items to Bring:

At least 1 liter of water


Sturdy Hiking boots/shoes


Money for carpool driver

Recommended Items to Bring:
Use our Event Checklists to make sure you have everything you need.

Trekking poles

Rain gear


Weather-appropriate clothes (coat, etc)

How to Get There:
Event Directions:

Click here for directions to Dockery Lake parking area.


Take GA 400 north, when GA 400 ends at the Chevron station make a left onto US-19/GA60 until you reach Dahlonega. From Dahlonega, take GA 60 north for about 12 miles. Turn right at the sign for Dockery Lake and proceed on Forest Road 654 , which is a gravel/dirt road. Pass through the campground, then stay right to reach the day-use parking area. The Dockery Lake Trail starts on the right side of the parking area. 

Carpool to Event Distance (round trip):110Mile(s)
Carpool Departure Time: 7:30 am
Carpool Location:   Log in for location
Carpool Directions:   Log in for directions
Carpool Cost: Estimated cost per vehicle for this event is $44.00 using a reimbursement rate guideline of $0.400 per mile. The total amount should be divided by the number of people in the vehicle, including the driver. This is a guideline, not a rule, for drivers but the cost should not be higher unless there are extenuating circumstances.


Click here for AllTrails map of our hiking route

* We encourage all members to follow our Etiquette Guidelines while participating in AOC events.

Cancellation/Partial Attendance:   Please review the AOC cancellation policy.