The park is open daily from 7:00am to 10:00pm.
The visitor center is open. A properly worn mask or face covering, covering both the nose and the mouth, is required to enter.
Picnic areas are open with tables spread out for social distancing and grills are open. Picnic shelters and the amphitheater are not available to reserve.
The family campground, equestrian campground, and backcountry campsites are open. There is no group camping permitted at South Mountains. Only six people or less per site.
RESERVATIONS ARE REQUIRED FOR ALL CAMPSITES. All campers, including backpackers, must make a reservation through the system online or by phone (1-877-722-6762). There are no walk-ins. Campers can make same-day reservations up until 9:00pm on the day of your arrival. You must make a reservation before setting up camp on a campsite. You cannot place your personal belongings on a site to "reserve" the site for you. When you arrive for your reservation, use the free Wi-Fi near the visitor center to self-check-in using the Reserve America Camping App.
Weekend delays: Visitors should expect park entrance delays from 9:30am to 6:00pm on weekends. You may encounter a 30-minute to 1-hour wait time to get into Jacob Fork access. Parking is limited and some spaces are coned off to meet maximum occupancy recommendations. Visitors will be directed to other parking areas once the High Shoals Falls trailhead parking is full. Vehicles will be stopped near the park entrance gate, and traffic into the park will be controlled by park rangers for visitor safety and for emergency access. Plan ahead and limit the number of vehicles you take to the park. Maps are available at the visitor center and trailhead kiosks.
Please note that this alert is updated only when something changes. Generally, state parks are following the phased reopening statewide. As of September 11, we are following the new guidelines under phase 2.5.Last updated on: Friday, September 11, 2020
South Mountains now routinely reaches capacity by 10:00am on weekends. Expect a 30min-1hr wait to enter the park once the Jacob Fork parking area is full. Park staff will be monitoring and controlling traffic. Roadside parking is PROHIBITED.Last updated on: Sunday, August 16, 2020
OPEN TODAYBike trails:
3001 South Mountain Park Ave.
Connelly Springs, NC 28612
GPS: 35.5963, -81.600
Open Daily (except Christmas Day) 7am
December, January and February 7pm
March, April and October 9pm
May - September 10pm
Closed Christmas Day
8am - 5pm weekdays and weekends
Closed Christmas Day
Things to do
The park is a great place for a hike! See the Trails page for more information.
The park has many miles of streams where an angler can cast a line. Most of the streams are classified as wild trout water while approximately two miles are classified as delayed harvest trout water. While general trout regulations apply in this area for part of the year, only single hook artificial lures can be used from October through the first Friday in June, and every fish caught must be released. A special license is needed for trout fishing, and all rules and regulations of the NC Wildlife Resources Commission are enforced.
South Mountains State Park is one of the few parks in the state parks system offering mountain bicyclists the chance to ride through the park. The 17-mile loop trail is strenuous, so riders should be in good shape before attempting it. See Trails for more information.
There are 33 miles of equestrian trails at South Mountains State Park. See Trails and Camping for more information. All visitors with horses must be able to provide proof of a negative equine infectious anemia (Coggins) test while visiting North Carolina State Parks.
Dining in the out-of-doors is a special treat at South Mountains State Park. The Jacob's Fork picnic area is adjacent to the Jacob Fork parking area and is accessible for persons with disabilities. Facilities include 12 tables, two grills and a restroom.
The Shinny Creek picnic area is less than a half mile from the Jacob Fork parking area. Four tables and three grills. A 10-table picnic shelter with fireplace and two charcoal grills are available on a first-come, first-serve basis unless reservations are made.