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Events and Programs

Late afternoon at Lake James State Park
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Mountain Bike and State Park Section of Fonta Flora Trails OPEN Today   

The mountain bike trails and the State Park sections of the Fonta Flora State Trail are OPEN today, June 26.

Be advised that the direction of Tindo and Wimba trails has changed as of April 8, 2022. The Tindo Trail is going in a counterclockwise direction. West Wimba Trail is going in a clockwise direction.  East Wimba will be going in a counterclockwise direction. Ignoring closures will cause permanent damage to the trail system and could lead to a citation and fine. Your cooperation ensures we can keep the trail system healthy and functioning for YOUR benefit and safety.

For information about Burke County portions of the Fonta Flora State Trail, please visit their website at https://www.burkenc.org/1258/Fonta-Flora-State-Trail.
If the time stamp on this alert is more than 24 hours old, please feel free to call the park office at 828-584-7728 for the most up-to-date information.
 

 Last updated on: Sunday, June 26, 2022

Paddy's Creek Swim Beach Reopening Tuesday, June 21st   

The Paddy's Creek swim beach has reopened after temporarily closing due to high levels of E.Coli found in the lake last Thursday. Test results from samples taken on Monday indicate the swim beach is safe for swimming.

Please contact the park office with questions at lake.james@ncparks.gov or 828-584-7728.

 Last updated on: Tuesday, June 21, 2022

High Holiday Visitation Expected   

Above capacity crowds are expected Fourth of July weekend. This may mean long lines for facilities and boat rentals and unavailability of campsites and picnic tables.  Likewise, if the park reaches capacity, the front gate may be closed, and visitors will be asked to make alternate plans.
 
Please arrive early and keep your party together to increase chances of admittance and decrease possibility of being separated.
 

 Last updated on: Friday, June 17, 2022


Map of North Carolina – Lake James State Park


Contact the park
 

828-584-7728

lake.james@ncparks.gov
 

Addresses
 

Paddy's Creek access

7321 N.C. 126
Nebo, NC 28761

GPS: 35.7503, -81.8920

 

Catawba River access
and park office

2785 N.C. 126
Nebo, NC 28761

GPS: 35.7287, -81.9011

 

Mailing address

P.O Box 340
Nebo, NC 28761

 

Hidden Cove boat ramp

3381 N.C. 126
Nebo, NC 28761

GPS: 35.7301, -81.8908

 

Canal Bridge boat ramp

9182 N.C. 126
Nebo, NC 28761

GPS: 35.7394, -81.8863
 

Hours
 

► 

  • December to February:
    7:00am to 7:00pm
     
  • March to April:
    7:00am to 9:00pm
     
  • May to September:
    7:00am to 10:00pm
     
  • October:
    7:00am to 9:00pm
     
  • November:
    7:00am to 8:00pm
     
  • Closed Christmas Day
     

► 

  • open year-round
     
  • 24-hour access
     

► 

  • December to February:
    closed
     
  • March to April:
    7:00am to 8:00pm
     
  • May to September:
    7:00am to 9:00pm
     
  • October:
    7:00am to 8:00pm
     
  • November:
    7:00am to 7:00pm
     

► 

  • May 1 to September 30:
    10:00am to 6:00pm

► 

Catawba River office

  • Monday to Friday:
    8:00am to 4:30pm

 

Paddy's Creek office 

  • Wednesday to Sunday:
    9:00am to 5:30pm
     

 

 

 

Scheduled events

Lake James State Park offers a variety of learning opportunities for all ages. Typically led by park rangers, these interpretive programs allow the public to gain perspective into what makes North Carolina state parks naturally wonderful. ​

Most of the events are free, though some require pre-registration. All give park visitors deeper insight into the natural world. Call the park office for more information.

 

In the world of today technology has replaced almost all need for the old map and compass, yet it remains an essential skill. Join Ranger Engels as he leads a basics of map reading and how to use a compass at the Paddys Creek Day-Use Area office. Afterwards you’ll have the opportunity to test your skills on a Orienteering course set up within the park. This program is set up for children ages 6 and up and is geared towards true beginners.
 

 

Date of Event:
Thu, 06/30/2022 - 1:00pm
Start Location:
Paddys Creek Day-Use Area office

We are constantly surrounded by beings that tower over us and outweigh us by several hundred pounds and yet we may not know much more about them than a few names like Oak, Maple, or Pine, yet we may not even be able to say which one is which. If you’d like to know how to ID trees and some other fun facts about them join Ranger Townsend on a dendrology hike down the Paddy’s Creek Trail

Start Location: Paddy’s Creek Day-Use Area office 1:00pm

Date of Event:
Sat, 07/09/2022 - 1:00pm
Start Location:
Paddys Creek Day Use Area Bath House Breezeway

Ranger Vick will be leading an informative snake program covering identification plus what to do if one encounters a snake at home or in the wild. The program will start at the Catawba River Area Office at 2:30 pm.

Date of Event:
Thu, 07/14/2022 - 2:30pm
Start Location:
Catawba River Area Day Use Area Office

The summer boat tour returns with the illustrious Captain Veasey at the helm to show you the sights, sounds, and smells of Lake James. Come prepapred for all types of weather and please arrive fifteen minutes early for a pre-depature meeting (9:45). Pre-registration is required and is capped at eight people.

Date of Event:
Fri, 07/15/2022 - 10:00am
Start Location:
East Picnic Shelter At Paddys Day Use Area

It is the year of the tree for NC State Parks and there is a lot more to trees than what meets the eye. Join Ranger Townsend as we talk about difficult questions such as, “What makes a tree, a tree?” “Can trees communicate?” “Can trees get sunburn?” Be prepared for a short hike along the Over Mountain Victory Trail.

 

Start Location: 1:00pm Holly Discovery Trail parking lot

Date of Event:
Mon, 07/18/2022 - 1:00pm
Start Location:
Holly Discovery Trail Parking Lot