General Coffee State Park 46 John Coffee Rd Nicholls , GA 31554 (912) 384-7082
HIGHLIGHTS: General Coffee State Park is named after General John Coffee, a US congressman, military leader, and planter. The park is known for its rare and endangered species of plants and wildlife, mostly due to the interesting habitat formed in the park. The terrain changes considerably throughout the area, ranging from sandy ridges to moist, swampy lowlands. In addition to the wildlife, the park has a mock-farm that demonstrates early life in South Georgia. The Heritage Farm has log cabins, a corncrib, a tobacco barn, a cane mill, farm animals and other exhibits.
The Gopher Loop hike begins in the northwestern corner of General Coffee State Park near the campground and the trail follows green blazes as it makes a 1.5 mile counter-clockwise loop around a knob that sits at 207 feet. The swamp surrounding Seventeen Mile River and Turkey Lake is seen as the trail slowly turns to the northwest and follows along the edge of an ancient region that is part of the park?s Sandhill Management Area. The longleaf-turkey oak Sandhill ecosystem is the most highly endangered ecosystem in the southeast and is home to many threatened and protected species of plants and animals. The dog may notice the numerous gopher tortoise burrows while walking the trail, so keep the leash tight so these protected animals and their homes are not destroyed. The burrows may extend up to 30 feet under the ground and be up to 6 feet below the surface level, and they are home not only to the gopher tortoise but also to over 100 other species of other animals.