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Ecology

An inviting trail at William B. Umstead State Park
Equestrian Parking Closed Till Dec. 11   

Our equestrian parking lot at the Multi Use Trail head will be closed for construction till Dec. 11

 Last updated on: Monday, November 23, 2020

Horse Trailer Parking Closed for Next Three Weeks   

The horse trailer parking lot will be unavailable for the next three weeks. That portion of the Multi-Use Trail (MUT) parking lot will be used for stockpiling material for a repair project. Unfortunately, there is no other parking for horse trailers, so visitors will not be able to bring their horses into the park during this time. The car parking portion of the MUT will be unaffected.

 Last updated on: Friday, November 20, 2020

Current status of park facilities   

Weekend delays: William B. Umstead has been routinely reaching parking capacity on weekends and visitors must wait for one vehicle leaves before the next vehicle may enter. As we move into the fall leaf season, please be prepared by arriving early morning and late afternoon, and have a backup plan if the park is full when you arrive. Weekdays are the best time to visit to avoid parking closures and crowds.

The visitor center is open. To enter the visitor center you MUST wear a mask, and there is a maximum of 6 people inside at all times.

Crabtree shelter #2 is open daily.

Maple Hill Lodge and Youth Tent Camp is open only on Friday and Saturday, and there is a two-night minimum to rent. 

To make reservations for any of our facilities, you must book it online or by calling 1-877-722-6762.

Camp Lapihio, Camp Crabtree, Sycamore Cabins, Reedy Creek Shelters 1 & 2, and Crabtree Shelter 1 all remain CLOSED. 

There will also be NO BOAT RENTALS this year. We will resume rentals next spring.

Please note that this alert is updated only when something changes. Generally, state parks are following the phased reopening statewide. As of October 3, we are following modified Phase 3.

 Last updated on: Monday, November 2, 2020


Map of North Carolina – William B. Umstead State Park


Contact the park
 

919-571-4170

william.umstead@ncparks.gov

 


Addresses
 

Crabtree Creek access
and visitor center

8801 Glenwood Ave.
Raleigh, NC 27617

GPS: 35.8905, -78.7502

 

Reedy Creek access

2100 N. Harrison Ave.
Cary, NC 27513

GPS: 35.8334, -78.7603

 


Hours
 

► 

  • November to February:
    8:00am to 6:00pm
     
  • March to April:
    8:00am to 8:00pm
     
  • May to August:
    8:00am to 9:00pm
     
  • September to October:
    8:00am to 8:00pm
     
  • Closed Christmas Day
     

► 

  • November to February:
    8:00am to 6:00pm
     
  • March to April:
    8:00am to 8:00pm
     
  • May to August:
    8:00am to 9:00pm
     
  • September to October:
    8:00am to 8:00pm
     
  • Closed Christmas Day
     

► 

  • The visitor center is currently closed until further notice due to COVID-19 precautions.
     
  • Open daily:
    9:00am to 5:00pm
     
  • Exhibit hall open daily:
    9:00am to 4:30pm
     
  • Closed Christmas Day
     

► 

  • Tent and trailer family campground is open from April 1 to October 31
     
  • The campground gates currently open at 8:00am and close at 9:00pm due to COVID-19 procedures. These new campground gate hours are in effect until further notice.
     
  • April:
    7:00am to 9:00pm
     
  • May to August:
    7:00am to 10:00pm
     
  • September to October:
    7:00am to 9:00pm

 


 

 

 

Natural resources

Get plant and animal checklists at the park office.

Relics of the past are still found throughout William B. Umstead State Park. The land was once shaped and altered to develop home sites, roadbeds, and agricultural fields. Following designation as a park, young forests returned and recreational facilities were added.

The past continues to influence the park’s ecology. The stone dams of grist mills held back sediments and shaped the stream bank. Roadbeds remain marked in the landscape. And ornamental plants continue to endure amidst the forest.

When the land was settled, the residing families subsequently introduced ornamental plant species into their landscapes. While the plants provided enjoyment and aesthetics, many were non-native and invasive. Once the park was established, these species were left unabated and continued to grow with an impact on native vegetation. The prevalence of non-native plants and their affect on the ecology can still be seen within the park.

The change in land use from farm to forest has allowed signs of lasting human impacts to converge with elements of the natural world. Demonstrating the ways state parks preserve the marks of history as well as the natural ecosystems.

Unique flora and fauna native to North Carolina can be found throughout the park. The varying forest types provide habitat for beavers, raccoons, deer, and a multitude of bird species. Belted kingfishers and great blue herons are commonly seen near streams and lakes. A variety of trees, shrubs, ferns and wildflowers offer beauty in the midst of every season.

Management of the park includes preserving the native ecosystems and natural areas. The Piedmont Beech Natural Area, a 50-acre tract of towering beech trees, has been included in the National Registry of Natural Landmarks. The tract exemplifies a forest type found in the piedmont prior to development. Due to the sensitive nature of the area, access is allowed only by permit. Crabtree Shrub Slopes Natural Area contains shrub species uncommon in the piedmont region including rhododendron and laurel. Access is available from Company Mill Trail.

The park continues to provide a view into North Carolina’s unique flora and fauna. And many visitors find there is reason to return, within each season and in each year, the park’s ecology shows traces of change.

Park Maps and Brochures:

Upcoming Events:

Friday, November 27, 2020 - 2:00pm
Tuesday, December 1, 2020 - 8:00am