Lake James State Park

Trails Status

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Hiking Trails

Open

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Biking Trails

Open

Tindo and East Wimba trails are going in a clockwise direction. West Wimba Trail is going in a counterclockwise direction.

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About the Park

Map of North Carolina with a star indicating the location of Lake James State Park

Located in Burke and McDowell counties 50 miles northeast of Asheville, Lake James State Park includes two areas to access this picturesque lake that is perfect for boating, swimming, and fishing. Campsites at both Catawba River and Paddy's Creek accesses provide an opportunity to spend the night by the lake, with some sites accessible only by paddling. Trails include bike trails at Paddy's Creek, the kid-friendly Holly Discovery Trail, the historic Overmountain Victory Trail, and the Fonta Flora State Trail. 

Camping

  • Tent sites (including backpacking and paddle-in sites)
  • Showers (not at paddle-in sites)
  • Firewood

Activities

  • Hiking (22 miles at Paddy's Creek, 4.5 miles at Catawba River)
  • Biking (14 miles, at Paddy's Creek only)
  • Paddling
  • Swimming (at Paddy's Creek only)
  • Fishing
  • Picnicking

Amenities

  • Boat ramps
  • Boat rentals (seasonal)
  • Concession stand (seasonal)
  • Amphitheater
  • Picnic shelters
  • Beach access (lake, seasonal)
  • Bathhouse (seasonal)

Plan Your Visit

Tab/Accordion Item

Address

7321 N.C. 126, Nebo, NC 28761

GPS: 35.7503, -81.8920

Current Weather

28761 Nebo, NC

Address

2785 N.C. 126, Nebo, NC 28761

GPS: 35.7287, -81.9011

Current Weather

28761 Nebo, NC

Address

3381 N.C. 126, Nebo, NC 28761

GPS: 35.7301, -81.8908

Current Weather

28761 Nebo, NC

Address

9182 N.C. 126, Nebo, NC 28761

GPS: 35.7394, -81.8863

Current Weather

28761 Nebo, NC

Park Hours

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Month

Hours

January 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
February 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
March 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
April 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
May 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.
June 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.
July 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.
August 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.
September 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.
October 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
November 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
December 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

 

Open year-round, with 24-hour gate access

Month

Hours

January closed
February closed
March 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
April 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
May 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
June 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
July 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
August 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
September 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
October 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
November 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
December closed

 

Open from May 1 to September 30, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily

Catawba River office

Open Monday to Friday, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Paddy's Creek office

Open from Wednesday to Sunday, from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Education

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Photo Gallery

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Top: Lake and skies tinted purple from sunset, C. Peek

Gallery: Foggy lake and pier in autumn, staff photo  |  Paddy's Creek bridge, K. Bischof  |  View of lake from Long Arm paddle-in campsites, C. Peek  |  Bicyclists on the bike trails, C. Peek  |  Early morning at the swim beach at Paddy's Creek access, K. Bischof