List of North Carolina state parks
The State of North Carolina has a group of protected areas known as the North Carolina State Park System, which is managed by the North Carolina Division of Parks & Recreation (NCDPR), an agency of the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources (NCDENR). Units of the system can only be established by an act of the General Assembly of North Carolina. The park system began in 1916 when the summit of Mount Mitchell became first state park in the Southeastern United States.1 According to the Division of Parks & Recreation, "the State Parks Act of 1987 lists six types of units included in the NC State Parks System."1 These are State Parks, State Recreation Areas, State Natural Areas, State Lakes, State Trails, and State Rivers. All units of the system are owned and/or managed by the division, and the division leases some of the units to other agencies for operation. Most units of the park system are also components of State Nature and Historic Preserve.
State Parks are the principle unit of the state park system. The NC Division of Parks & Recreation describes its parks as follows:
Generally, State Parks are expected to possess both significant natural resource values and significant recreational values. State Parks are expected to accommodate the development of facilities, but may vary in the extent of development depending upon what can be provided without damage to the scenic or natural features. Facilities are planned and constructed to keep disturbance of natural resources to a minimum and to leave a “liberal portion” of each park undisturbed and free from improvements and structures, except for trails.1
Several of the State Parks are new and are still being planned and developed. Also, a few of the older state parks were greatly expanded in size in the 2000s.
|Bay Tree State Park||—||Coastal Plain||Bladen2||3609 acres (2.46 km2)||19792||Undeveloped||North Carolina's oldest, undeveloped State Park is adjacent to Bay Tree State Lake.|
|Carolina Beach State Park||||Coast||New Hanover2||3420 acres (1.7 km2)||19692||Open||Named not for a beach, rather the Town of Carolina Beach, the park is located along the banks of the Cape Fear River and Snow's Cut (part of the Intracoastal Waterway). The park is best known for its variety of wild carnivorous plants, including the Venus Flytrap.|
|Carvers Creek State Park||||Coastal Plain||Cumberland2||34,332 acres (17.53 km2)||20052||Open||Under development;
Interim facilities are open at the park's historic Long Valley Farm Access.
|Chimney Rock State Park||||Mountains||Rutherford, Polk, Buncombe, Henderson2||35,942 acres (24.05 km2)||20052||Open||Under development;
The park protects the landscape of Hickory Nut Gorge, including its most well known feature, Chimney Rock.
|Cliffs of the Neuse State Park||||Coastal Plain||Wayne2||3892 acres (3.61 km2)||19452||Open||The park protects ancient cliff faces located along the banks of the Neuse River.|
|Crowders Mountain State Park||||Piedmont||Gaston2||35,126 acres (20.74 km2)||19732||Open||The park protects the Kings Mountain Ridgeline in North Carolina, including its highest peaks Crowder's Mountain and King's Pinnacle. The park is also adjacent to Kings Mountain State Park in South Carolina, which in turn is adjacent to Kings Mountain National Military Park. All three parks are connected via the Kings Mountain Ridgeline Trail.|
|Dismal Swamp State Park||||Coastal Plain||Camden2||314,432 acres (58.40 km2)||19742||Open||Under development;
The park protects large part of the Great Dismal Swamp, and it is adjacent to Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge. It is bounded on the east by the Dismal Swamp Canal.
|Elk Knob State Park||||Mountains||Watauga, Ashe2||33,473 acres (14.05 km2)||20022||Open||Under development;
Only interim facilities exist.
The park preserves some of the highest peaks in Ashe and Watauga Counties, and it protects headwaters of the North Fork New River.
|Eno River State Park||||Piedmont||Durham, Orange2||34,200 acres (17 km2)||19732||Open||The park protects the banks of the Eno River and surrounding lands.|
|Fort Macon State Park||||Coast||Carteret2||3424 acres (1.72 km2)||19242||Open||The first North Carolina State Park to open to the public. It protects the historic Fort Macon and the eastern end of Bogue Banks.|
|Goose Creek State Park||||Coastal Plain||Beaufort2||31,672 acres (6.77 km2)||19742||Open||The park protects part of the landscape along the Pamlico Sound.|
|Gorges State Park||||Mountains||Transylvania2||37,708 acres (31.19 km2)||19992||Open||Under development;
North Carolina's westernmost state park; it is located along the steep Blue Ridge Escarpment. The park is best known for the many waterfalls it provides access to, both inside the park and on adjacent public lands.
|Grandfather Mountain State Park||||Mountains||Avery, Watauga, Caldwell2||33,393 acres (13.73 km2)||20092||Open||Under development;
Adjacent to the Blue Ridge Parkway, the park protects the highest peak located along the Blue Ridge Escarpment. The park consists of lands formerly known as the "backcountry area" when it was privately owned nature preserve.
|Hammocks Beach State Park||||Coast||Onslow2||31,155 acres (4.67 km2)||19612||Open||While protecting a variety of maritime habitats, the park is most known for its four mile (6.4 km) long barrier island, Bear Island. The park operates a passenger ferry service between the mainland and island in the warmer months.|
|Hanging Rock State Park||||Piedmont||Stokes2||37,014 acres (28.38 km2)||19352||Open||The park encompasses the eastern end of the Sauratown Mountain range, including a geologic feature known as Hanging Rock.4 It also protects a segment of the Dan River.|
|Haw River State Park||||Piedmont||Rockingham, Guilford2||31,374 acres (5.56 km2)||20032||Limited
Currently, there are no facilities set aside for day users.
This park preserves large wetlands along the Haw River.
|Jockey's Ridge State Park||||Coast||Dare2||3426 acres (1.72 km2)||19752||Open||The park protects the tallest sand dune system on the East Coast of the United States.|
|Jones Lake State Park||||Coastal Plain||Bladen2||31,669 acres (6.75 km2)||19392||Open||The park surrounds Jones State Lake and Salters State Lake, both of which are largely undeveloped Carolina Bay lakes.|
|Lake James State Park||||Mountains||McDowell, Burke2||33,515 acres (14.22 km2)||19872||Open||Under redevelopment;
Located near the base of Linville Gorge, the park encompasses large parts of the Lake James shoreline. In 2004, the park nearly octupled in size after a land deal with Crescent Resources.
|Lake Norman State Park||||Piedmont||Iredell2||31,934 acres (7.83 km2)||19622||Open||Formerly known as Duke Power State Park, most of this park consists of lands donated by Duke Power along the shores of Lake Norman, the largest manmade body of fresh water in North Carolina.|
|Lake Waccamaw State Park||||Coastal Plain||Columbus2||32,159 acres (8.74 km2)||19762||Open||This park is along the shoreline of Lake Waccamaw, the largest natural Carolina Bay lake.5|
|Lumber River State Park||||Coastal Plain||Scotland, Hoke, Robeson, Columbus2||39,268 acres (37.51 km2)||19892||Open||The State Park with the greatest geographic expanse, it preserves the banks of the black water Lumber River, which is Wild and Scenic River and a State River.|
|Mayo River State Park||||Piedmont||Rockingham2||32,244 acres (9.08 km2)||20032||Open||Under development;
This new, still growing park is located along the Mayo River.
|Medoc Mountain State Park||||Piedmont||Halifax2||33,892 acres (15.75 km2)||19732||Open||At 325 foot (99 m), Medoc Mountain isn't a true mountain but rather the remnant of a former mountain range which eroded long ago.6 The park preserves the land around the Medoc, as well as the banks of nearby Little Fishing Creek.|
|Merchants Millpond State Park||||Coastal Plain||Gates2||33,447 acres (13.95 km2)||19732||Open||The park protects a unique, cypress filled millpond and the Lassiter Swamp.|
|Morrow Mountain State Park||||Piedmont||Stanly2||34,496 acres (18.19 km2)||19352||Open||At 936 foot (285 m), Morrow Mountain is the fourth tallest peak of the Uwharrie Mountains,7 and the park encompasses several peaks of the range, just west of the Yadkin / Pee Dee River.|
|Mount Mitchell State Park||||Mountains||Yancey2||31,996 acres (8.08 km2)||19162||Open||The first North Carolina State Park, it protects the summit of Mount Mitchell the highest point in the eastern United States.1|
|New River State Park||||Mountains||Alleghany, Ashe2||32,781 acres (11.25 km2)||19752||Open||This park preserves the landscape along the New River, which is Wild and Scenic River and a State River.|
|Pettigrew State Park||||Coastal Plain||Tyrrell, Washington2||35,768 acres (23.34 km2)||19362||Open||The park protects the banks of Lake Phelps, the state's second largest natural lake, and the Scuppernong River.8|
|Pilot Mountain State Park||||Piedmont||Surry, Yadkin2||33,651 acres (14.78 km2)||19682||Open||The park encompasses the western end of the Sauratown Mountain range, including Pilot Mountain, as well as an island filled segment of the Yadkin River.9|
|Raven Rock State Park||||Piedmont||Harnett2||34,694 acres (19.00 km2)||19702||Open||Located along both banks of the Cape Fear River, the park encompasses a rock outcropping where the river crosses the fall line.|
|Singletary Lake State Park||||Coastal Plain||Bladen2||3649 acres (2.63 km2)||19392||Limited
|The park surrounds Singletary Lake, which is a State Lake and a Carolina Bay lake. The park's facilities are usually reserved for registered group campers, but limited day use may be allowed while the camps are unoccupied.|
|South Mountains State Park||||Mountains||Burke2||318,491 acres (74.83 km2)||19782||Open||Under redevelopment;
The largest unit of the state park system, it encompasses a large part of the South Mountains range, which is a branch of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
|Stone Mountain State Park||||Mountains||Alleghany, Wilkes2||314,210 acres (57.5 km2)||19692||Open||Adjacent to the Blue Ridge Parkway, this large park's centerpiece is a granite dome named Stone Mountain.|
|William B. Umstead State Park||||Piedmont||Wake2||35,606 acres (22.69 km2)||19452||Open||This large, forested park is in the heart of the Research Triangle.|
State Recreation Areas more intensely developed units than State Parks, and they largely encompass lands less sensitive to human activities than State Parks. According to the NC Division of Parks & Recreation:
State Recreation Areas are sites where the primary purpose is outdoor recreation, rather than preservation. More intensive development of facilities is provided than in State Parks. Protection and enjoyment of the natural resources are still important, and the sites are expected to contain scenic and attractive natural features. Development is planned and constructed to keep a “reasonable amount” of each area undisturbed and free from improvements and structures.1
|State Recreation Area||Web-
|Falls Lake State Recreation Area||||Piedmont||Wake, Durham2||35,035 acres (20.38 km2)||19822||Open||This recreation area is located along the shores of Falls Lake, a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers built reservoir.|
|Fort Fisher State Recreation Area||||Coast||New Hanover2||3287 acres (1.16 km2)||19862||Open||This recreation area is known for its long, sandy beach between the Cape Fear River and the Atlantic Ocean. This is the only unit of the park system that allows four-wheel drive vehicles off road.|
|Jordan Lake State Recreation Area||||Piedmont||Chatham2||33,916 acres (15.85 km2)||19812||Open||This recreation area is located along the shores of Jordan Lake, a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers built reservoir.|
|Kerr Lake State Recreation Area||||Piedmont||Vance, Warren2||33,002 acres (12.15 km2)||19522||Open||This recreation area is located along the North Carolinian shores of Kerr Lake, a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers built reservoir, which is along the border of North Carolina and Virginia.|
State Natural Areas protect areas more sensitive to human activities than State Parks. Most of the State Natural Areas are undeveloped and have limited to no facilities, and some of them are closed to the general public to protect rare, fragile ecosystems. A few have developed facilities for low intensity, passive recreation, as well as facilities for public interpretation and education of the natural area. The NC Division of Parks & Recreation states:
The purpose of State Natural Areas is focused on preserving and protecting areas of scientific, aesthetic, or ecological value. Facilities are limited to those needed for interpretation, protection, and minimum maintenance. Generally, recreational and public use facilities such as camping, swimming, picnicking, and the like are not provided in State Natural Areas.1
|State Natural Area||Web-
|Baldhead Island State Natural Area||Coast||Brunswick2||31,260 acres (5.1 km2)||19792||Contiguous to Fort Fisher State Recreation Area, this undeveloped natural area preserves a large portion of the Smith Island Complex, which consists of barrier islands, salt marshes, bays, tidal creeks and estuarine islands.10|
|Bear Paw State Natural Area||Mountains||Avery2||3351 acres (1.42 km2)||20082||Closed||The natural area is located just north of Grandfather Mountain State Park, and it protects Hanging Rock Ridge and the headwaters of Dutch Creek. The Cherokee name for the site is "Yonah‑wayah", which means "Bear's Paw".11 There are no public right of ways to the natural area's boundary. It is managed by Elk Knob State Park.|
|Beech Creek Bog State Natural Area||Mountains||Watauga2||3120 acres (0.49 km2)||20022||The natural area protects a southern Appalachian bog.|
|Bullhead Mountain State Natural Area||Mountains||Alleghany2||3365 acres (1.48 km2)||20002||This natural area is adjacent to the Blue Ridge Parkway and just north of Stone Mountain State Park.|
|Bushy Lake State Natural Area||Coastal Plain||Cumberland2||36,343 acres (25.67 km2)||19772||Managed by Jones Lake State Park, the natural area protects an area of wet pocosin and carolina bay forest.|
|Chowan Swamp State Natural Area||Coastal Plain||Gates2||36,066 acres (24.55 km2)||19732||Open||Located along the northern shores of the Chowan River, this natural area is leased by the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission for management as part of the larger Chowan Swamp Game Land.|
|Hemlock Bluffs State Natural Area||||Piedmont||Wake2||397 acres (0.39 km2)||19762||Open||The natural area is leased by the Town of Cary for operation as Hemlock Bluffs Nature Preserve.12|
|Lea Island State Natural Area||Coast||Pender2||325 acres (0.10 km2)||20002||The natural area preserves a largely undeveloped barrier island.|
|Lower Haw River State Natural Area||Piedmont||Chatham2||31,025 acres (4.15 km2)||20032||Open||Underdevelopment;
This natural area is adjacent to and managed by Jordan Lake State Recreation Area, and it has one 2-mile (3.2 km) hiking trail along the Haw River.
|Masonboro Island State Natural Area||||Coast||New Hanover2||3106 acres (0.43 km2)||19762||Open||Managed by the North Carolina Division of Coastal Management, this natural area preserves an undeveloped barrier island, near Wilmington, North Carolina. The island is only accessible by boat.|
|Mitchells Millpond State Natural Area||Piedmont||Wake2||393 acres (0.38 km2)||19762||Closed||The natural area protects granitic flatrock outcrops. The ecosystem of the flatrocks is unique and fragile.|
|Mount Jefferson State Natural Area||||Mountains||Ashe2||3803 acres (3.25 km2)||19562||Open||Formerly a State Park, this natural area is managed as a satellite of New River State Park, and it preserves the prominent peek of Mount Jefferson.|
|Occoneechee Mountain State Natural Area||||Piedmont||Orange2||3190 acres (0.77 km2)||19972||Open||Managed as a satellite of Eno River State Park, this natural area preserves the highest point in Orange County.|
|Pineola Bog State Natural Area||Mountains||Avery2||391 acres (0.37 km2)||20062||The natural area protects a southern Appalachian bog.|
|Run Hill State Natural Area||Coast||Dare2||3123 acres (0.50 km2)||19952||Open||Managed as a satellite of Jockey's Ridge State Park, the natural area preserves Run Hill, a large sand dune north of Jockey's Ridge.|
|Sandy Run Savannas State Natural Area||Coastal Plain||Pender, Onslow2||32,538 acres (10.27 km2)||20062||The natural area preserves southern pine savannas.|
|Sugar Mountain Bog State Natural Area||Mountains||Avery2||3102 acres (0.41 km2)||20062||The natural area protects a southern Appalachian bog.|
|Theodore Roosevelt State Natural Area||||Coast||Carteret2||3265 acres (1.07 km2)||19712||Open||Jointly managed by Fort Macon State Park and the North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores, the natural area preserves Bogue Banks' only intact maritime forest.|
|Weymouth Woods-Sandhills Nature Preserve||||Coastal Plain||Moore2||3900 acres (3.6 km2)||19632||Open||The first North Carolina State Natural Area, it preserves strands of longleaf pine forests in Sandhills region.|
|Yellow Mountain State Natural Area||Mountains||Mitchell, Avery2||31,421 acres (5.75 km2)||20082||Open||The natural area protects a Grassy Bald in the Roan Highlands range.11 The natural area is adjacent to the Pisgah National Forest.|
State Lakes are all large, naturally formed bodies of water in the state's Coastal Plain. Most of the lakes are Carolina Bays. The NC Division of Parks & Recreation describes its State Lakes as follows:
Chapter 165 of the Laws of 1929 specified that “all lakes now belonging to the State having an area of 50 acres or more” should be “administered as provided for other recreational areas now owned by the State.” This allowed the then-Department of Conservation and Development to assume management authority for seven Coastal Plain lakes that became units of the State Parks System known as State Lakes. Most of these are administratively included as part of an adjoining State Park, but one of the lakes (White Lake) has no public ownership on its shoreline.1
|State Lake||Adjoining State Park||Counties||Size||Remarks|
|Bay Tree State Lake||Bay Tree State Park||Bladen2||31,418 acres (5.74 km2)||Bay Tree Lake was formerly known as Black Lake.|
|Jones State Lake||Jones Lake State Park||Bladen2||3224 acres (0.91 km2)||The shore line of Jones Lake is entirely owned by the state.|
|Phelps State Lake||Pettigrew State Park||Washington, Tyrrell2||316,600 acres (67 km2)||Phelps is North Carolina's second largest natural lake.8|
|Salters State Lake||Jones Lake State Park||Bladen2||3315 acres (1.27 km2)||Salters is the only State Lake without development along its shores.|
|Singletary State Lake||Singletary Lake State Park||Bladen2||3572 acres (2.31 km2)||The shore line of Singletary Lake is entirely owned by the state.|
|Waccamaw State Lake||Lake Waccamaw State Park||Columbus2||38,938 acres (36.17 km2)||Lake Waccamaw is the largest natural Carolina Bay lake.5|
|White State Lake||None||Bladen2||31,068 acres (4.32 km2)||This is the only State Lake without public lands along its shores.|
State Trails are one of the principal components of the State Trail System. State Trails may be either long-distance, hiking trails or paddle trails. State Trails may have land components for providing a trail corridor or for protecting significant features or resources along the trail. Most of these lands are leased to other land management agencies. All of the State Trails are joint projects with other government agencies and nonprofit organizations. The following is the NC Division of Parks & Recreation description of State Trails:
The North Carolina Trails System Act was passed in 1973 to help provide for the state’s outdoor recreation needs and to promote public access to natural and scenic areas. The act prescribed methods for establishing a statewide system of scenic trails, recreation trails, and connecting or side trails. The Trails System includes “park trails”, which are designated and managed as units of the State Parks System known as State Trails, and “designated trails”, which are managed by other governmental agencies or corporations.1
|Deep River State Trail||Piedmont||30 miles (0 km)||31,274 acres (5.16 km2)||20072||Under planning|
|French Broad River State Trail||Mountains||367 miles (108 km)||30 acres (0 km2)||18972||paddle trail|
|Mountains-to-Sea State Park Trail13||State||3530 miles (850 km)||3778 acres (3.15 km2)||20002||The Mountains-to-Sea Trail (MST) is a Long-distance, hiking trail, which runs across North Carolina from the Great Smoky Mountains to the Outer Banks. Still a work in progress, the trail will be approximately a 1,000 miles (1,600 km) long when completed.|
|Yadkin River State Trail||Piedmont||3130 miles (210 km)||30 acres (0 km2)||19872||This paddle trail is along a mostly free-flowing stretch of the Yadkin River between the W. Kerr Scott Dam and the beginning of High Rock Lake. There are only two small impoundments along the trail, and neither one creates a large reservoir.|
State Rivers are components of the state's Natural and Scenic Rivers System, which is the state's equivalent to the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System. Most of the state's National Wild and Scenic Rivers, are also State Rivers and vice versa. The NC Division of Parks & Recreation states that:
The Natural and Scenic Rivers System was created by the 1971 General Assembly to preserve and protect certain free flowing rivers, their water quality and their adjacent lands for the benefit of present and future generations. The Natural and Scenic Rivers Act established criteria and methods for inclusion of components to the system. Components of the Natural and Scenic Rivers System are State Rivers, and are also units of the State Parks System.1
|Horsepasture State Natural River||Mountains||34.5 miles (7.2 km)||30 acres (0 km2)||19852||The river is located in the Pisgah National Forest, within a moderate 1.75 miles (2.82 km) hike of Gorges State Park, via the Rainbow Falls Trail.14|
|Linville State Natural River||Mountains||313.0 miles (20.9 km)||30 acres (0 km2)||19752||The river is located in the middle of the Linville Gorge Wilderness.|
|Lumber State Natural River||Coastal Plain||334.5 miles (55.5 km)||30 acres (0 km2)||19892||Lumber River State Park is along portions of the adjacent river banks.|
|Lumber State Scenic River||Coastal Plain||352.0 miles (83.7 km)||30 acres (0 km2)||19892||Lumber River State Park is along portions of the adjacent river banks.|
|Lumber State Recreational River||Coastal Plain||315.5 miles (24.9 km)||30 acres (0 km2)||19892||Lumber River State Park is along portions of the adjacent river banks.|
|New State Scenic River||Mountains||326.5 miles (42.6 km)||30 acres (0 km2)||19752||New River State Park is along portions of the adjacent river banks.|
Some units have been formally removed from the NC State Park System and transferred to other agencies for management.
When the State Historic Site system was established in 1955, the system's first seven components were historic properties transferred from the State Park System.15
|Boone's Cave State Park16||||Piedmont||Davidson17||16110 acres (0.45 km2)||197117||200218||Open||Formerly managed by Morrow Mountain State Park, Boone's Cave is now a Davidson County Park.|
|Frutchey State Park19||||Piedmont||Montgomery19||54.89 acres (0.2221 km2)||193719||195519||Open||The park was named after L. D. Frutchey, who donated the core property to the state, and it was later renamed "Town Creek State Park". The park was transferred as one of the initial components of the State Historic Site system, becoming known as Town Creek Indian Mound.19|
|Waynesborough State Park20||
|Coastal Plain||Wayne20||20130 acres (0.53 km2)||197920||200321||Open||Formerly managed by Cliffs of the Neuse State Park, the park is now owned and managed by the Old Waynesborough Commission, a non-profit corporation.|
|† Size while the unit was part of the park system|
- List of U.S. national parks
- List of North Carolina state forests
- List of National Natural Landmarks in North Carolina
- "About Us » The Park System » Overview". North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation. Archived from the original on November 20, 2010. Retrieved May 20, 2011.
- "Directory of State Parks and Recreation Areas" (PDF). North Carolina Office of Administrative Hearings. May 1, 2010. pp. 1–2. Retrieved May 20, 2011.
- "Size of the North Carolina State Parks System" (PDF). North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation. January 1, 2013. pp. 1–4. Retrieved March 20, 2013.
- Lynch, Ida Phillips; Pendergraft, Bill (2007). "Piedmont". North Carolina State Parks: A Niche Guide. Design by Leesa Brinkley Graphic Design. Chapel Hill, North Carolina: Niche Publishing. pp. 40–41. ISBN 978-0-9794591-0-8. "Hanging Rock State Park is located at the eastern end of the isolated Sauratown Mountain range."
- Lynch, Ida Phillips; Pendergraft, Bill (2007). "Coastal Plain". North Carolina State Parks: A Niche Guide. Design by Leesa Brinkley Graphic Design. Chapel Hill, North Carolina: Niche Publishing. pp. 96–97. ISBN 978-0-9794591-0-8.
- Lynch, Ida Phillips; Pendergraft, Bill (2007). "Piedmont". North Carolina State Parks: A Niche Guide. Design by Leesa Brinkley Graphic Design. Chapel Hill, North Carolina: Niche Publishing. pp. 54–55. ISBN 978-0-9794591-0-8. "This "mountain" reaches a height of only 325 feet and is the eroded remnant of a larger mountain range."
- Lynch, Ida Phillips; Pendergraft, Bill (2007). "Piedmont". North Carolina State Parks: A Niche Guide. Design by Leesa Brinkley Graphic Design. Chapel Hill, North Carolina: Niche Publishing. pp. 56–57. ISBN 978-0-9794591-0-8. "Morrow is the tallest of the range's four major peaks and measures 936 feet."
- Lynch, Ida Phillips; Pendergraft, Bill (2007). "Coastal Plain". North Carolina State Parks: A Niche Guide. Design by Leesa Brinkley Graphic Design. Chapel Hill, North Carolina: Niche Publishing. pp. 106–107. ISBN 978-0-9794591-0-8.
- Biggs, Jr., Walter C.; Parnell, James F. (1993) . "Piedmont". State Parks of North Carolina (2nd ed.). Winston-Salem, North Carolina: John F. Blair. pp. 176–187. ISBN 0-89587-071-1. "Pilot Mountain, like the rocky escarpments in nearby Hanging Rock State Park, is a remnant of the ancient Sauratown Mountain range."
- "I. Description of Fort Fisher State Recreation Area" (PDF). Fort Fisher State Recreation Area General Management Plan. North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation. February 1, 2007. Retrieved May 20, 2011. "The Bald Head Island State Natural Area consists of a complex of barrier islands, salt marshes, bays, tidal creeks and estuarine islands located south of the state recreation area. (Figure I-2) The state natural area, a unit of the N.C. State Parks System, is under administration of staff from Fort Fisher State Recreation Area and includes: all of Bluff Island; about five miles of the beach strand of East Beach and the marshes behind it; and land at the actual point of Cape Fear on the southeastern tip of Bald Head Island."
- "Session Law 2008-155". Raleigh, North Carolina: General Assembly of North Carolina. June 19, 2003. Retrieved May 20, 2011.
- Lynch, Ida Phillips; Pendergraft, Bill (2007). "Piedmont". North Carolina State Parks: A Niche Guide. Design by Leesa Brinkley Graphic Design. Chapel Hill, North Carolina: Niche Publishing. p. 43. ISBN 978-0-9794591-0-8.
- "Session Law 2000-157". Raleigh, North Carolina: General Assembly of North Carolina. August 2, 2000. Section 1. Retrieved May 20, 2011. "The General Assembly authorizes the Department of Environment and Natural Resources to add the Mountains to Sea State Park Trail to the State Parks System as provided in G.S. 113-44.14(b)."
- Burgess, Randall (March 17, 2010). "Rainbow Falls Trail Decision Memo" (PDF). Transylvania County, North Carolina: USDA Forest Service, National Forests in North Carolina, Pisgah Ranger District. pp. 1–4. Retrieved May 20, 2011.
— "Rainbow Falls Trail Extension". USDA Forest Service, National Forests in North Carolina. Retrieved May 20, 2011.
— "Rainbow Falls Trail #499". USDA Forest Service, National Forests in North Carolina. Retrieved May 20, 2011. "1.75 mi - Moderate"
- McCullough, Gary L. (2001). "Foreword". North Carolina's State Historic Sites. Winston-Salem, North Carolina: John F. Blair. p. vi. ISBN 0-89587-241-2. "In 1955, seven historic properties were transferred from the state parks system to what was then the North Carolina Department of Archives and History. Thus began the system of state historic sites..."
- "Boone's Cave State Park - Park Profile" (PDF). North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation. pp. 1–2. Archived from the original on May 27, 2010. Retrieved May 20, 2011.
- Biggs, Jr., Walter C.; Parnell, James F. (1993) . "Piedmont". State Parks of North Carolina (2nd ed.). Winston-Salem, North Carolina: John F. Blair. pp. 107–110. ISBN 0-89587-071-1.
- "Session Law 2002-149". Raleigh, North Carolina: General Assembly of North Carolina. October 9, 2002. Section 2. Retrieved May 20, 2011. "Boone's Cave State Natural Area is deleted from the State Parks System pursuant to G.S. 113-44.14. The State may transfer this property to Davidson County for management as a park. The instrument transferring this property shall provide that the State retains a possibility of reverter and shall provide that, in the event that Davidson County ceases to manage the property as a park, the property shall revert to the State. The State may not otherwise sell or exchange the property."
- McCullough, Gary L. (2001). "Central". North Carolina's State Historic Sites. Winston-Salem, North Carolina: John F. Blair. pp. 51–54. ISBN 0-89587-241-2.
- "Waynesborough State Park - Park Profile" (PDF). North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation. pp. 1–2. Retrieved May 20, 2011.
- "Session Law 2003-234". Raleigh, North Carolina: General Assembly of North Carolina. June 19, 2003. Section 5. Retrieved May 20, 2011. "Waynesborough State Park is deleted from the State Parks System pursuant to G.S. 113-44.14."
- NC State Parks home page
- Size of the North Carolina State Park System (Updated biannually)
- NC General Statute § 143‑260.10. Components of State Nature and Historic Preserve.