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Late afternoon at Lake James State Park
Contact Park Office for Boat Rental Availability   

The boat rental concession at the Paddy's Creek day-use area will be open Saturday and Sunday, August 20 & 21, subject to staff availability. At this time only canoes will be available for rent. We appreciate your understanding on this matter.

Please contact the park office at 828-544-6800 or lake.james@ncparks.gov for daily rental status.
 

 Last updated on: Monday, August 15, 2022

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, August 15.

Be advised that the direction of Tindo and Wimba trails has changed as of July 11, 2022. The Tindo Trail is going in a clockwise direction. West Wimba Trail is going in a counterclockwise direction.  East Wimba will be going in a clockwise 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: Monday, August 15, 2022

Paddy’s Creek Swim Area Is Open Daily 10am - 6pm   

The Paddy’s Creek Swim Area is open for the season from 10 am - 6pm daily.  Concession stand operation and boat rentals have resumed for the season-- please contact the park office at 828-584-7728 or lake.james@ncparks.gov with questions on hours and fees.
 

 Last updated on: Friday, June 3, 2022


Map of North Carolina – Lake James State Park


Contact the park
 

828-544-6800

lake.james@ncparks.gov
 

Addresses
 

Paddy's Creek access and park office

7321 N.C. 126
Nebo, NC 28761

GPS: 35.7503, -81.8920

 

Catawba River access

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 - closed

Paddy's Creek office 

  • Daily:
    9:30am to 6:00pm
     

 

 

 

List of trails

Taking a hike on the extensive trail system at Lake James State Park is a great way to enjoy the outdoors at your own pace. A walk in the spring when the air is scented with sweet wild azalea and rhododendron blossoms or a stroll in the fall when the leaves are ablaze in colors is tonic for the soul. 

Lake James has 15 miles of multi-use mountain biking trails with terrain suitable for riders of all skill levels. Cyclists are permitted on these trails specifically—not on hiking trails.


⇒  ATTENTION: BIKE TRAIL USERS

When trails are closed for construction, poor trail conditions due to weather or any other reason, they are closed both for visitor safety AND for the protection of the trail and natural resources. Trails are expensive to construct, maintain and repair. Disregarding trail closures results in:

  1. Delaying or proloning construction or repair;
  2. Damaging the trails, resulting in significant costs and further closure time for additional repair;
  3. Endangering yourself in addition to both state park and EMS staff who would work to get you out of harm's way if you are lost or hurt.

Thank you for respecting our park's natural resources, facilities and fellow park visitors.


 


Lake Channel Overlook
Location: Catawba River Area

Description:

The trail is an easy hike to a scenic overlook of Lake James and Linville Gorge.


Surface: natural surface

Length:
1.50 miles
one way
Difficulty:
moderate hike
Blaze:
Red diamond

Lower Tindo Loop
Location: Paddy's Creek Area

Description:

The trail is appropriate for mountain bikers of beginner or intermediate skill levels.


Surface: natural surface

Length:
1.40 miles
loop
Difficulty:
intermediate biking
Blaze:
Blue circle

Mill's Creek Trail
Location: Paddy's Creek Area

Description:

The trail offers an undulating track through forested ridges adjacent to the lake with some scenic vistas along the way.


Surface: natural surface

Length:
3.60 miles
loop
Difficulty:
moderate hike
Blaze:
Blue triangle

Overmountain Victory Trail
Location: Paddy's Creek area

Description:

The trail follows the shoreline of Lake James and Paddy's Creek through rolling terrain. Almost all of the trail is shaded under a mature, forest canopy. Park at the Holly Discovery Trail lot and walk back past the Paddy's Creek Bridge to access the trailhead.


Surface: natural surface

Length:
2.00 miles
one way
Difficulty:
easy hike
Blaze:
white triangle

Paddy's Creek Trail
Location: Paddy's Creek area

Description:

The trail runs along the shoreline of Lake James to the mouth of Paddy's Creek. It is mostly flat with a few rolling sections. This trail runs through mature forest.


Surface: natural surface

Length:
1.00 miles
one way
Difficulty:
moderate hike
Blaze:
orange triangle