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Events and Programs

Late afternoon at Lake James State Park
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Bike Trails are OPEN today    

The mountain bike trails at Lake James are OPEN today.  Please contact the park for the most up-to-date trail status.

 Posted on: Wednesday, April 26, 2017 - 7:59am
Volunteer Campground Hosts needed   

Serve as “live-in” host at park campground. Register campers, provide information and explain rules and regulations. Perform light maintenance work around the campground such as picking up litter, cleaning and stocking toilet facilities, cleaning campsites and selling firewood. This position requires working weekends, holidays and evening hours. Your campsite, with full RV hook-ups, provided free of charge while you volunteer.  For more information contact Ranger Jamie Cameron at 828-584-7728.

 Posted on: Wednesday, April 26, 2017 - 7:59am
Events and Programs

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.


Aquatic life in our creeks and rivers go far beyond the fish and crawdads you see with a casual glance. The ecosystem of moving water can be incredibly diverse, depending on water quality and other factors. At Lake James State Park, we are lucky to have a waterway of fantastic biological diversity and this program will show participants many of the hidden animals that call Paddy’s Creek home. Armed with nets, seines and buckets, participants will collect aquatic insects, crustaceans, fish, amphibians and more with Park Ranger Jamie Cameron. This program is suitable for all ages, especially those who are willing to get wet and have a great time. We will meet in the parking lot for the Holly Discovery Trail at the Paddy’s Creek Area at 10 a.m. Wear clothes you don’t mind getting wet and water shoes or waders if you have them.

Date of Event:
Sat, 04/29/2017 - 10:00am
Start Location:
Paddy's Creek Area - Holly Discovery Trailhead

Lake James is particularly beautiful as the trees put out fresh green buds and blossoms and there’s no better way to enjoy it than by boat. Ranger Earl Weaver will be your captain and guide aboard the park patrol boat as we search for loons, otters, eagles and scenic vistas. The weather could be blustery, so be sure to dress warmly if you are one of the eight lucky participants. Registration is required and available on a first-come, first-served basis. Call the park office at 828-584-7728 to reserve your spot. Meet at the Paddy’s Creek Area East Picnic Shelter at 1:45 p.m. for a briefing and prompt 2 p.m. departure.

Date of Event:
Sat, 04/29/2017 - 2:00pm
Start Location:
Paddy's Creek Area - East Shelter

It’s National Grandparent’s Day and what better way to honor them than taking a hike at Lake James State Park? With all of their life experience and accumulated knowledge, grandparents have so much to offer future generations; let them strut their stuff on this trek along one of the park trails. A park ranger will lead this easy walk along Paddy’s Creek. We’ll be looking for wildlife, plants, trees and anything else of interest. Wear comfortable hiking shoes and bring snacks and water. The adventure begins at 10 a.m. at the Paddy's Creek Area of the park.

Date of Event:
Mon, 09/11/2017 - 10:00am
Start Location:
Paddy's Creek Area - Holly Discovery Trail

Take a Child Outside Week, or TACO Week has been a staple at Lake James for several years. This national event strives to bring kids outside through educational programing. The park will be hosting numerous ranger led activities focused around kids and getting them into the woods. Please keep an eye out for an updated program calendar as TACO Week draws closer. We hope to see you and your kids at the park.

Date of Event:
Sun, 09/24/2017 - 8:00am to Sat, 09/30/2017 - 5:00pm
Start Location:

Lake James State Park

6883 NC Hwy 126
NeboNC 28761
Latitude: 35.750378
Longitude: -81.892075

Park Hours:

Day-use areas at Paddy's Creek and Catawba River:
December - February: 7am - 7pm
March, April & October: 7am - 9pm
May - September: 7am - 10pm 
November: 7am - 8pm

Hidden Cove Boat Access Hours:
December - February:  closed
March, April, & October: 7am - 8pm
May - September: 7am - 9pm
November: 7am - 7pm 
All areas closed Christmas Day

Swim Area
10am - 6pm 
May 1 through September 30