Click the links below to view information about activities for this park.
|Education and Events|
|Exhibits and Historic Sites|
Camping: Family camping: Just past the park office, a turnoff leads to the family campground where 90 campsites for tents and recreational vehicles are located on three loop roads. Each site has a tent pad, picnic table and fire ring / grill. Drinking water and two washhouses with hot showers are located nearby. Electric and water hookups are located on some sites and a dump station for use by registered RV campers is adjacent to the campground. The campground and bathhouse are open year round.
There is a fee for camping and a limit of six persons per site. Reservations are encouraged but any site not reserved is available on a first-com first-served basis. Park gates are locked daily at posted closing hours. Campers are not permitted to leave the park after closing hours or before 7 a.m., except in an emergency. In an emergency situation, go to the pay phone at the contact station or visitor center and dial 911.
Group camping: Four group sites are available for a fee by reservation only. Each site will accommodate 25 people. Each site has a fire ring, grill, tables and access to water, restrooms and showers.
Backpack camping: Six backpack camping sites are located along Widow's Creek. The trailhead leading to the sites is located in the backpack parking lot. Distance to the sites ranges from 1.5 to 3 miles from the trailhead. All supplies must be packed to the camping area, and minimum impact camping procedures should be followed. Backpack camping is by permit only with a maximum of six people per site. Self register at the backpack camping parking lot. Backpack camping is prohibited in all other areas of the park.
Education and Events: Rangers hold regularly scheduled educational and interpretive programs about Stone Mountain State Park. Click the Events link on the Park Menu to the left to search our database of park events.
To arrange a special exploration of Stone Mountain State Park for your group or class, contact the park office.
Educational materials about Stone Mountain State Park have been developed for grades 5-8 and are correlated with North Carolina's competency-based curriculum in science, social studies, mathematics and English/language arts. The Stone Mountain program introduces students to basic geologic concepts, focusing on Stone Mountain. Major concepts covered include the rock cycle, geologic time, weathering and erosion, igneous rocks, geologic processes, resource use, and stewardship. Accompanying the program is a teacher's booklet and workshop, free of charge to educators. To learn more about environmental education or to search our database of upcoming workshops, click the Education tab, above.
Exhibits and Historic Sites: There's more to Stone Mountain than outdoor recreation! Drop by the park office or visit one of the historical sites to open your eyes to the natural and cultural history of the park.
Check out the park's old-time still, loom and other historical artifacts in the Mountain Culture Exhibit in the park office building. Other exhibits include animal pelts and a full-body black bear mount. These exhibits tell the story of how the independent mountain settlers provided shelter, food and clothing for their families. Other displays offer visitors the chance to learn about trout, butterflies and moths, and much more. The exhibits are open during office hours.
Walk through one of the park's historic sites, the Hutchinson Homestead. The homestead is complete with a log cabin, barn, blacksmith shop, corncrib, meat house and original furnishings. Visitors can play recordings that explain how different aspects of the farm were run. The farm was built in the mid-19th century. Restored in 1998, the homestead is representative of the lives of early settlers in the area. The homestead is open to visitors on weekends during peak season. When the homestead is closed during the week and during winter, visitors can walk the homestead grounds.
Another park historic site is the Garden Creek Baptist Church, located on the bank of the East Prong of Roaring River. Established in 1897, the building is one of the few original churches in Wilkes County that has not undergone any major repairs or remodeling. The church holds services every Sunday, May through October and on the first Sundays, November through April. Visitors are welcome to walk the grounds when the church is closed.
Fishing: Designated Trout Streams: More than 20 miles of park streams are designated trout waters. Rainbow and brown trout dominate the lower parts of the streams while brook trout inhabit the higher, cooler stretches of water. Garden, Widow's and Big Sandy creeks are Wild Trout Waters where only single hook artificial lures may be used.
The East Prong of Roaring River is a stocked stream and is classified as delayed harvest. For approximately eight months of the year, no trout may be harvested from the river and only single hook artificial lures may be used.
For season dates and regulations for each type of trout water, contact the NC Wildlife Resources Commission (WRC). A valid North Carolina fishing license and trout license are required for all streams, and regulations of the WRC are enforced throughout the park.
Fish for Fun: Fish just for fun on Bullhead and Rich Mountain creeks. This section is strictly catch and release and is open for fishing year round from 7:30 a.m. until one hour before park closing. Requires a fly-rod and reel, barbless fly hooks and fishing net. A special fishing permit is required for this area and may be purchased at the Bullhead Creek parking area. Permits are issued on a daily basis only.
Accessible Fishing Piers: Two accessible fishing piers are located along the East Prong of Roaring River. Accessible parking spaces are provided at each pier. Intended for use by individuals with mobility impairments, other individuals may use the piers when space is available.
Picnicking: The picnic area is located near the visitor center and offers a peaceful woodland experience. Included in this area are 75 individual picnic sites and three large picnic shelters. The picnic area offers tables, grills, a water fountain and restrooms. The shelters may be reserved for a fee. Available free of charge on a first-come, first-served basis, if not reserved. A short trail connects to the main loop trail to provide access to a waterfall and Stone Mountain's summit.
Click the Forms & Permits link on the Park Menu to the left for associated forms and permits.
Rock Climbing: Climbing is permitted in designated areas on the cliffs of Stone Mountain. Because of the dangers of rock climbing and rappelling, climbing is not recommended for beginners unless they are accompanied by an experienced climber.
All climbers must register with the park by completing a climbing permit which is available at the climber's area at the base of the mountain. There is no fee for this permit. Prior to activity, a copy of the permit must be deposited in a registration box or given to a park ranger. An additional copy is provided for participants and must be held in their possession while engaged in climbing or rappelling.
Participants are responsible for their own personal safety, including securing proper training and equipment, and adhering to safe practices. Basic rock climbing safety equipment and techniques must be used at all time.
The following state park climbing regulations apply at all times:
Trails: Stone Mountain Loop Trail: Start at the Upper Trailhead parking lot (#12 on map) directly across from the campground road. This 4.5 mile strenuous trail takes you across the summit of Stone Mountain then by the Hutchinson Homestead and a 200 foot waterfall. Hikers can choose to go out to the waterfall or the summit and back without having to do the entire loop. This trail can also be accessed from the Lower Trailhead parking lot (#10 on map) but remember which parking lot you started from.
Cedar Rock Trail: Available from both Stone Mountain Loop and Wolf Rock trails, this one-mile trail leads to Cedar Rock, a large granite outcrop allowing views to the south/southeast and an excellent view of Stone Mountain.
Wolf Rock Trail: This 1.5-mile trail is entered from Stone Mountain Loop Trail or the Cedar Rock Trail and provides views of the Blue Ridge Mountain escarpment. The ridges dividing three watersheds - Garden Creek, Widow's Creek and Bullhead Creek - can also be seen from atop Wolf Rock. Signs of old field succession are evident along the trail as it leads through areas which are predominantly pine, then mixed pine-hardwood and finally mature hardwood.
Black Jack Ridge Trail: Available from Cedar Rock and Wolf Rock trails, this 1.5-mile trail follows an old road bed through heavily wooded areas. In the winter, this hike offers wonderful views of Stone Mountain.
Middle Falls/Lower Falls Trail: Available from Stone Mountain Loop Trail, this trail leads hikers a half mile along Big Sandy Creek to Middle Falls and then extends to Lower Falls.
Widow's Creek Trail: This trail is entered from the backpack parking area. The trail follows Widow's Creek for 2.5 miles to the different backpack sites and stops. To view Widow's Creek Falls, park just beyond the Widow's Creek bridge and walk a short distance upstream.
Mountains-to-Sea Trail: A section of the Mountains-to-Sea State Trail is located within the park. The trail begins at the backpack parking area for the Widows Creek Trail. The trail forks to the right at the backpack sites and continues for another 5.5 miles to the Devil's Garden Overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway. All backpackers must register and pay at the backpack parking area before camping overnight.
Bridle Trail: The five-mile horseback riding trail begins at the horse trailer parking lot and ends at John P. Frank Parkway. All visitors with horses must be able to provide proof of a negative equine infectious anemia (Coggins) test while visiting North Carolina State Parks.
Caution: The terrain on the top of Stone Mountain may appear level, but it becomes gradually steeper down slope. Those who wander off the trail risk becoming stranded as the lower sections of the rock are almost vertical. Stay on designated trails and exercise caution as waterfalls and steep, rocky terrain may create hazardous and slippery conditions. Avoid steep, rocky ledges at all times, and exercise extreme caution when rocks are wet.