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The view from the overlook at Raven Rock State Park
Status of park facilities as of August 3rd   

Raven Rock State Park's main access, at 3009 Raven Rock Road, is open from 7:00am to 9:00pm.  With high volumes of visitors, there maybe limited parking and long wait times. Be mindful of the time you arrive and when the park closes. The gates will lock at 9:00pm. The restroom will close at 5:30pm.

The Mountain Laurel Bicycle Loops remains closed to all users.

Primitive backpack camping at the Canoe Camp and Family Wilderness Camp is open by reservation only. Walk-in reservations are not being accepted at this time. Campers must arrive before 7:00 pm day of reservation. You must check in with a park ranger prior to going to your site. Information regarding camping will be given to registered campers upon reservation.

Please note: The visitor center, most restrooms, all picnic areas, and water fountains remain closed, so please be prepared and bring your own water.

Social distancing rules are in effect and will be enforced. Please put space between you and others.

 Last updated on: Monday, August 3, 2020

Park at Capacity by 9:30 a.m. on Weekends   

The park now routinely reaches capacity by 9:30 a.m. on weekends. If you do not arrive by this time, you are not likely to get a parking spot until the afternoon.  

 Last updated on: Friday, July 31, 2020

***CAMPERS MUST CHECK IN BY 7:00 PM***   

All campers must arrive at park no later than 7:00 pm for day of reservation.
Reservations must be made before arriving to the park.  Walk-ins are not accepted at this time.

The Canoe Campsites and Family Wilderness Campsites are primitive backpack sites only (2 miles or 2.5 miles from parking areas).  

 Last updated on: Saturday, July 4, 2020

Bridle trails:

OPEN TODAY

Bike trails:

CLOSED TODAY


Map of North Carolina – Raven Rock State Park


Contact the park
 

910-893-4888

raven.rock@ncparks.gov
 

Addresses
 

Visitor center

3009 Raven Rock Road
Lillington, NC 27546

GPS: 35.4597, -78.9127

 

Moccasin Branch access

**ACCESS CLOSED**

778 Moccasin Branch Road
Lillington, NC 27546

GPS: 35.4549, -78.9081
 

Hours
 

► 

  • November to February:
    7:00am to 7:00pm
     
  • March to May:
    7:00am to 9:00pm
     
  • June to August:
    7:00am to 10:00pm
     
  • September to October:
    7:00am to 9:00pm
     
  • Closed Christmas Day
     

► 

  • Open daily:
    8:00am to 5:00pm
     
  • Closed Christmas Day
     

 

 

 

History highlights

Raven Rock State Park sits along the fall zone, an area where the hard, resistant rocks of the foothills give way to the softer rocks and sediments of the coastal plain. The underlying rocks of the area were formed more than 400 million years ago by intense heat and pressure.

Through the ages, flowing waters and swirling winds gradually eroded the land, carving and sculpting Raven Rock. This immense crystalline structure rises to 150 feet and stretches for more than a mile along the Cape Fear River. The rock was originally called Patterson's Rock for an early settler who found refuge there when his canoe capsized nearby. In 1854, its name was changed to Raven Rock, inspired by the sight of ravens that formerly roosted on rock ledges.

The Siouan and Tuscarora Indians hunted the area until European settlers arrived in the mid-1700s. The first settlers were primarily hunters and trappers who were searching for high country similar to their native country, Scotland. Later, stores, mills and quarries were built. Many of the woodlands were farmed, and as the forests returned, much of the land was harvested for timber.

A road that stretched from Raleigh to Fayetteville crossed the Cape Fear River via the Northington Ferry and served as the area's major transportation route. Locks and dams were built along the river to facilitate navigation by boat, and Raven Rock became an important landmark for river pilots. After a hurricane destroyed the locks and dams in 1859, the structures were not replaced; railroad transportation eliminated the need for river travel. As new roads were built, the ferry was closed and Raven Rock became a popular recreation spot. The remnants of the Northington lock and dam can still be seen in the park.

In 1965, interest grew in preserving the area as a state park, and local citizens organized support for the project. In 1969, a bill establishing the park was passed in the General Assembly. More than 220 acres of land were purchased and another 170 acres were donated by Burlington Industries. Additional tracts have since been purchased, bringing the park to its present size of 4,684 acres.