Hostel Profile: Hiker Hostel, Dahlonega GA

Hostel name: Hiker Hostel

Address: 7693 US-19 / Dahlonega, GA 30533

NOBO mile: 20.6, 6 miles east of Woody Gap

SOBO mile: 2,169.2, 6 miles east of Woody Gap


For the day-before-launch crowd (the apparent majority), a shuttle from the North Springs MARTA stop in Atlanta, to the hostel, and then out to your chosen starting point is included in the “thru-hiker special”. For post-Springer thru-hikers, shuttles are available from trail crossings all over Georgia for varying prices. For the weekend-warriors and section hikers out there, this hostel can also be reached by car via a long, winding and beautiful stretch of US-19.


This hostel does it all. 4-person bunkrooms, 1-2 person private rooms, and adorable shipping container-cabins are available to guests. Shuttles are offered to numerous trail crossings from the hostel, and resupply shuttles into Dahlonega are available for free from Woody Gap at 5pm sharp every day. A great last-minute honors system resupply is available on-site for necessities and cutesy extras (think sunscreen, permethrin, color-your-own postcards, patches and meals-in-a-bag). The back deck is gorgeous and cozy with a fire pit, porch swing and benches; an awesome place to get aquainted with new trail friends. Sheets, plankets and towels are included for over-nighters. A hiker kitchen with several killer hiker boxes and a fridge to ourselves sweetens the deal even more. Moderatly clean and well mannered pets are welcome, hot showers and laundry are available even to non-guests, a hearty breakfast is included for overnighters, the wifi is free, and they can slackpack you for the entire length of the AT in Georgia. Hikers, bikers, climbers and tourists alike are welcome.

A tiny house-esq container cabin


The thru-hiker special runs for $85, which includes shuttles to and from the hostel, resupply shuttles to Walmart, a bed in a bunk room, showers, a yummy hot breakfast and 8oz of white gas or denatured alchohol. You can wash your clothes for three bucks extra, and showers for non-guests are available for $3. The bunk room alone is $19,  a private room is $45, and a container cabin is $55. Shuttle prices can be found here and slackpacking prices, here.

This haven for jittery new thru-hiker hopefuls is run by Josh and Leigh Saint of the AT thru-hiker class of 2000. The two raised this gorgeous log cabin fourteen years ago on a peice of raw land just outside of Dahlonega. After their own thru-hike, they realized how much went into starting a thru-hike and decided to give back. They’re super chill and helpful and their pets – Maggie the dog and Olive the cat – are sweet as can be. It’s cozy, welcoming, and exactly what you hope for when you think of a hostel. This place is ideal for soon-to-be thru-hikers needing to de-stress and reorganize. It’s also for sale. After all their years of service, the Saints are ready to pass the torch of their successful business and retire.



Overall: It was cozy and calming and I feel much better about starting my thru-hike tomorrow. Hit this one up, pals. It’s basically a right of passage for us out-of-staters anyway.

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Comments 7

  • CSWilson : Mar 10th

    Moderately clean? ahahahah! Are you in for a rude awakening, so sorry to inform.
    Staying there 11 months ago, I found The Hiker Hostel pristine, and I’m an old lady former nurse with a gimlet eye.
    For a moment I thought the hostel had sold, as it was for sell back then.

    Your skin’s gonna crawl further up the trail.
    Or not, one gets used to funky and grubby, it won’t take long. Hint: wear flip flops while showering at some of these hostels.

    • Theresa : Mar 13th

      I think she said moderately clean pets are allowed or did I read this wrong? I don’t think the implication was that th hostel wasn’t clean???

    • Stef : Mar 14th

      Dude, it’s a HIKER hostel, not the Hilton. For all they offer and at such a good price, I wouldn’t complain.

  • Shawn Smith : Mar 15th

    Lol. This is the cleanest Hostel on the trail. You will be staying at true dumps further up the trail. The saints have the advantage by being at the start. No smelly hikers or thru Hiker entitlement yet.

  • Hannah Bosel : Mar 15th

    I don’t know where I may have misworded something to sound like I thought the place was dirty, but I totally agree – this place was pristine! No complaints from me, I absolutely loved it.

  • Wayne Bazemore : Mar 17th

    My daughter and I stayed here in May 2016. We were doing a section hike on the AT. Josh and Leigh are truly the best host. They were very accommodating and the hostel was remarkably clean. The hot breakfast was delicious. Leigh’s mom, who was visiting at the time, drove us to Woody Gap the first day of our hike free of charge. You will love this place.

  • bob easson : Jul 30th

    When I arrive at the airport, where do I go to find this Marta you talk about? How much is the fare too. Thank you. Bob


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