Discover the Highest Point in Harris County

Written by Jaydee Williams
Updated: July 24, 2023
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Harris County is in the west-central area of Georgia and it borders the state line. The county was founded in 1827. It’s a part of the Columbus metropolitan area and many families relocating from Columbus choose to settle in Harris. It has an area of 473 square miles which is covered in rolling hills, farmland, and forests. 

It’s no wonder that Harris County is such a popular place to relocate. The county is home to the largest state park in Georgia, the Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park. It also has a mountain range called the Pine Mountain Range that runs across the northern parts of the county.

Key Points

  • The highest point in Harris County is Dowdell’s Knob, a high point on the Pine Mountain Range.
  • Dowdell’s Knob Trail is a 4.3-mile trail that goes to the top of Harris County’s highest point.
  • Former President Franklin D. Roosevelt frequented the trail and a grill and picnic spot were built on top of the mountain.

Harris County’s Highest Point

Dowdell’s Knob is a mountain on the Pine Mountain Range. It’s the highest point in the county at 1,395 feet above sea level. The area is a historical spot where former President Franklin D. Roosevelt would sit and eat. There is a brick oven and picnic spot on the top point of Dowdell’s Knob that Roosevelt constructed to use during his visits. There is a life-sized statue in memorial of the President on the trail.

It’s a beautiful place to sit and look out, which is probably why Roosevelt had a cooking and picnicking spot there. The high point gives a great view over the rest of the Pine Mountain Range and beyond. There are a few other tall mountains on the Pine Mountain Range, but Dowdell’s Knob is the highest. It’s not the highest point in the entire state but read here to find out where the highest point in Georgia is.


The life-sized statue is a memorial of President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

©Dsdugan, CC0 – License

Dowdell’s Knob trail is open year-round, so you can explore Harris County’s highest point any time that you’d like.

Where is Dowdell’s Knob Located on a Map?

Dowdell’s Knob is 66 miles south of Atlanta and 30 miles north of Columbus. It’s in Shiloh, one of the cities in Harris County. To get to the mountain, you can take Georgia State Route 190. The trail to the top is just off Route 190 inside the F.D. Roosevelt State Park

You can take the Dowdell Knob Loop: Pine Mountain and Boot Top Trail Loop to explore Harris County’s highest point. It’s a 4.8-mile loop and it takes an average of two hours and ten minutes to complete. It’s a very popular trail and people explore it while camping, bird watching, or just backpacking for the day. You can expect to see other people while exploring the trail. 

When Should You Go to Dowdell’s Knob?

The trail is open year-round, so you can explore Harris County’s highest point any time that you’d like. The weather is usually rainier during the hot summer months and drier during the cold months. A great time to visit is during spring and fall when the weather is good and temperatures are usually comfortable. It’s a beautiful trail to take and it’s considered moderately challenging. If you are a seasoned hiker or athletic person, you may find this trail gives you a fun challenge.

In the 4.8 miles of the trail, you’ll gain 751 feet of elevation and see some beautiful forest views. It’s a rocky trail, so watch your footing and keep your eyes out for wildflowers off the path. The trail welcomes dogs but requires that they be on a leash.

Can You Drive to Dowdell’s Knob?

You can drive to Dowdell’s Knob trail by taking Route 190 to Dowdell Knob Road. After going left onto Dowdell Knob Road, you’ll travel for 1.3 miles and the trailhead will be on the right. There is a small parking area at the trail’s entrance. 


The Dowdell’s Knob trailhead sign.

©Dsdugan, CC0 – License

What Is There to Do at Dowdell’s Knob?

You can have a lot of fun at Dowdell’s Knob depending on what you’re looking to do. If you like bird watching, you can spot a few different species like the American robin, rock pigeon, and red-winged blackbird. Wanting to go camping? There are a few backcountry camping spots within the state park, with a few near Dowdell’s Knob. There’s also a fishing lake nearby named Lake Franklin. 

If you can’t find anything to do at Dowdell’s Knob or at the beautiful state park around it, just take a moment to enjoy the scenery. The best part of the trail is the top, where you can look over the meadows and forests beyond. It’s a unique place because a tornado hit the area in 2011 and it destroyed a lot of the valley below the lookout point. There are still toppled trees that you can see laying on the ground, overgrown by years of new growth. Wildflowers and mossy plants cover the rocky trail, and you can see a small trickling stream along the way as well.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © Thomsonmg2000, CC0 – License / Original

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About the Author

Jaydee Williams is a writer at AZ Animals where her primary focus is on gardening, mammals, and travel. She has over 5 years of experience in writing and researching and holds a Master's Degree in English from the American College of Education, which she earned in 2019. A central Florida native, Jaydee loves being on the water, playing music, and petting her cat, Beans.

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