A few weeks ago while hiking with Mary Erna, we looked up and saw what we instantly knew was an Indian Marker Tree. While researching these trees, I learned that they usually are much older than they look. Native Indians created the odd shape by pruning back some the the tree’s limbs and then by tying down other limbs with leather straps so that the tree grew into a certain shape. The tree they used most often was a white oak sapling.

Marker trees can be spotted all across north Georgia because hundreds still exist. They are usually found along trails that lead to sources of water or on pathways that were viewed as important Indian footpaths. The one in this photo is located in Unicoi State park not very far from the stream that flows away from the base of Amicalola Falls.