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Parks and Outdoor Recreation

William B. Umstead State Park Large wilderness right smack in the middle of the Triangle.
Falls Lake State Park Large multipart park surrounding Raleigh's primary resevoir. Start of the Neuse River.
Lake Crabtree County Park Lake Crabtree is part of a flood control program. Unfortunately pollution concerns.
Shelley Lake Park Another park surrounding a flood control lake in North Raleigh.
Lake Johnson Popular jogging park around lake in university area.
Jordan Lake Large lake popular for boating at the end of the Haw river. Bald Eagle nesting.
Schenk Forest Not actually a park but a university research forest. Many were sad when the university decided dogs had to be banned.


Eno River State Park Durham: Travels a length of the Eno River.
Occoneechee Mountain State Natural Area Hillsborough: One of the steepest and tallest parts of the area, near an old quarry and the Eno River.

Taking a Drive

Blue Ridge Mountains There are many parks in the NC mountains stretching from the Smokies, along the Blue Ridge Parkway with Shining Rock, Grandfather Mountain, and Linville Gorge to the Virginia Border. North Carolina is home to the largest mountain east of the Mississippi River (Mt. Mitchell). Although not reaching to alpine zones, most mountain activities, such as hiking, climbing, rafting, and skiing can be easily accommodated. Great Smoky Mountains, The Blue Ridge Parkway, Black Mountains State Park, Shining Rock Wilderness, Pilot Mountain, Hanging Rock From a 2 1/2 to 5 hour drive.
North Carolina Beaches From just north of Myrtle Beach, through Wilmington, to Camp LeJeune, and finally along the famous Outer Banks barrier islands, a variety of shoreline atmospheres are available. North Carolina has some of the longest stretches of continuous beach to be found anywhere. Thanks to proximity to the Gulf Stream, the water has a long period of pleasant warmth. Oak Island, Southport, Wilmington, Wrightsville, Carolina, Kure, Topsail, Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Nags Head From 2 to 4 hours drive.
Uwharrie National Forest (1 1/2 hours), Kerr Lake (1 hour), Raven Rock (1 hour)


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