Meet with a park ranger at the TRACK Trail/Sassafras Trail located on the upper side of the Summit Area parking lot near the restroom for a short walk through recently burned areas of Pilot Mountain State Park. Come learn why we perform prescribed fires at Pilot Mountain and see firesthand the effects of fire on this mountainous landscape.
Events and Programs
The park will be over capacity every weekend it is not rainy or cold. We have a limited amount of parking and once it fills, cars will only be let in as space allows. Once inside the park you can expect a wait for a parking space. Hikers can easily avoid this by visiting our yadkin river section or corridor trail parking. Visitors whose goal is a scenic drive only will be better served to visit the blue ridge parkway, as there is no through traffic possible when we fill up.
We encourage visitors that can visit during the week to do so, or arrive early.
You can check the parks traffic status by using the app "Waze". We also post warning signage near the park entrance.
No drones, UAV's, flying machines, or RC aircraft are allowed at Pilot Mountain State Park. Drones also cannot be launched from the state road or US highway outside the front gate.Posted on: Saturday, February 18, 2017 - 7:24am
The Corridor/Bridle trail is closed to horseback riding due to wet conditions. This alert will be removed when it reopens.Posted on: Saturday, April 22, 2017 - 8:56am
Pilot Mountain 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.
Join a Park Ranger and learn how to orient yourself with a map and compass. Meet in the campground near the registration kiosk. Maps and compasses will be provided, but feel free to bring your own compass if you'd like to learn to use it. Please dress for the weather.
Meet with a park ranger to learn the slimy lifestyle of salamanders that call Pilot Mountain State Park their home. We will start at the Park Office and learn about salamander life cycle, how to properly handle these amazing creatures, enjoy activities that introduce you to common species around the park, then hike to explore some salamander habitats! Rain or shine!
Meet with a Park Ranger to explore the Pilot Creek Access to look for spring migrants and some of our residents. The hike will cover approximately 2.5 miles and last for 2 hours. Please bring your own binoculars, or borrow a set of our limited supply. Meet at Pilot Creek Section of the park off Boyd Nelson Rd. Driving Directions from US Hwy 52: Take exit 134, drive west on Hwy 268 and turn left onto Shoals Road (1st left after gas station), after 0.5 miles, turn left onto Boyd Nelson Road, park at the barn after you cross the bridge.
Meet with a Park Ranger for a walk along the Horne Creek Trail to look for early spring migrants, learn about the Wood Thrush Project, and enjoy a special viewing of the bald eagle nest. The hike will cover approximately 4 miles and last for 2 hours. Please bring your own binoculars, or borrow a set of our limited supply. Within the Bean Shoals Canal Access.
Pilot Mountain State Park
The Mountain Section:
March to November : Opens at 7am, Closes at Sunset.
December to February : Opens at 8am, Closes at Sunset.
Campers only may enter the mountain section until the following times:
March,April, October- 9pm
Yadkin River Section:
November to February: 8:30am - 5pm
March, April: 8:30am - 7pm
May, June, July, August, September: 8:30am - 8pm
October: 8:30am - 7pm
Please note the North and South River Sections are 10 and 20 miles from the mountain section of the park and have different operating hours. Gates are locked promptly at closing. There is no gate entry before or after hours, including campgrounds, except in case of medical or law enforcement emergency. No vehicles other than those registered to campers may be left in the park overnight.
8am - 4:30pm 7 days a week
The park is closed Christmas Day