Activities

Hiking

Nearly 25 miles of trails wind through a variety of distinct habitats at Falls Lake State Recreation Area. Relatively flat and easy to walk, the trails offer an opportunity to observe the diversity of plant and animal life in the park.

Status of park trails

Insects may be plentiful during the warmer months; insect repellent is recommended. To avoid becoming lost, stop by the visitor center or marina for a trail map. Pay close attention to trail markers. Horses are not allowed on the park's trails.

Pets are permitted on park trails. Pets must be on an attended leash of no longer than 6 feet at all times. Please pick up after your pet when you are at the park; pet waste is not fertilizer and can put plants, other animals, and visitors at risk for disease. Please dispose of pet waste in garbage bins and do not throw waste bags in the woods or leave them on the ground. When sharing a trail, hikers with pets should yield to all other trail users, including bicyclists.

Biking

The Beaverdam Mountain Bike Trails are a series of 5 mountain biking trails that span a combined total of 14 miles. Parking is available at the Beaverdam Access. Bikes are prohibited on all of the other trails.

Status of park trails

When sharing the trail, bicyclists should yield to hikers.

Trail Lengths:

  • Inner Loop - 1.1 Miles
  • Outer Loop - 2.2 Miles
  • West Loop - 2.3 Miles
  • South Loop - 7.3 Miles
  • Drop Zone (located off of South Loop) - 0.9 Miles

Attention: Bike Trail Users

Bike trails are closed at times for construction, poor trail conditions due to weather, or other reasons, for both visitor safety and protection of the trail and natural resources. Trails are expensive to construct, maintain and repair. Disregarding trail closures results in:

  • Delaying or prolonging construction or repair;
  • Damaging the trails, incurring significant costs and further closure time for additional repair; and
  • Endangering yourself, state park staff 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.

Boating

Swimming

Fishing

Fish from the riverbank or the wheelchair-accessible fishing docks, or launch your boat at the Highway 50 Boat Launch. Largemouth bass, crappie, and catfish are waiting.

A North Carolina Coastal Recreational Fishing License (CRFL) is required to fish in the park. N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries fishing regulations are enforced.

Fishing in a designated swimming area or off of any bridge is prohibited.

Picnicking

Falls Lake State Recreation Area has multiple picnic areas located in Beaverdam, Rolling View, and Sandling Beach. Under the shade of large pine trees, tables, and grills supply all the necessities for dining.

Wheelchair-accessible sites are also available. Water, restrooms, and parking are conveniently located nearby.

Picnic tables are free to use and are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Birdwatching

Falls Lake State Recreation Area is a great place for birdwatching. Great blue herons thrive on the lakeside, and warbles, finches, and woodpeckers fill the woods. Bald eagles can often be spotted in the air around Rolling View. In addition to providing habitat for resident land birds during the winter and summer, the park is located along an important migration corridor and attracts many birds during their migrations.

Birdwatching checklist