Journey on foot, on horseback or in a canoe. No matter what your mode of travel, Pilot Mountain has miles of trails to explore. Little Pinnacle Overlook offers hikers a close-up view of Big Pinnacle and distant views of the valley below. Equestrians and hikers alike will relish the trails through the six-mile woodland corridor that connects the two sections of the park. Cliffs and crevices, ravens, and rhododendron are only a small part of the scenery to be discovered. For more information about the trails, see the park map. All visitors with horses must be able to provide proof of a negative equine infectious anemia (Coggins) test while visiting North Carolina State Parks. Horse rentals not available.
See the Equestrian Trails Closure Policy.
The Mountains to Sea Trail passes through the park on the Corridor, Mountain, Grindstone and
Grassy Ridge Trails. The Mountains to Sea Trail enters the park on the southern end of the
Corridor Trail in the west and leaves via the privately owned Sauratown Trail to the east.
You may find current information about the Mountains to the Sea Trail at www.ncmst.org
This 3.3 mile one way trail starts at the Pilot Creek trailhead on Boyd Nelson Rd off Shoals Rd and the HWY 268 exit of US 52, ending at the family campground, where you can connect to the Grindstone Trail to link to a long loop around the mountain. Hikers must park at Boyd Nelson Rd., you may not park in the campground. The trail crosses tributaries of Pilot Creek and ascends through Pine Oak Heath forests to the campground. This trail was built by our Friends Group, Friends of Sauratown Mountains at no cost to the park.
The Pilot Mountain State Park TRACK Trail follows the Sassafras Trail. This moderate trail offers scenic views of the Pilot Mountain pinnacle and vistas of the surrounding mountains, while leading hikers through a unique fire-based forest ecosystem. Trail has activities for children.
This trail at the Parking Lot or Corridor Parking Lot on Hauser Road. You cross the Yadkin
River and then weave around both islands. DO NOT ATTEMPT TO FORD RIVER IF YOU CANNOT
SEE THE BOTTOM. CROSS FORDS AT YOUR OWN RISK.
Pilot Mountain State Park
The Mountain Section:
March 15 to November 30 : Opens at 7am. Closes at Sunset.
December to February : Opens at 8am. Closes at 6pm.
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