Outdoor Activities Near North Wilkesboro
North Wilkesboro’s close proximity to the Blue Ridge Parkway makes it an oasis for nature lovers and adventures. It’s about a 30 minute drive to the Parkway and the town is lush with gorgeous scenery. If you like hiking, biking, or just walking, the area offers numerous parks and trails for you to take advantage of. Outdoor fun & activities are easy to find if you are an active, adventure seeker. In this post we’ll explore the numerous outdoor activities near North Wilkesboro.
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So Many Outdoor Activities Near North Wilkesboro!
Stone Mountain State Park is one of our favorite places to spend the day. There are over 18+ trails, waterfalls, fishing, camping sites and the historic Hutchinson Home- stead and Garden Creek Baptist Church. In the spring and summer you can swim in the creeks and streams and in the fall you can just relish in the air. Of course in the fall you daydream amongst the colorful array of fall foliage and falling leaves. It’s just magical here. Stone Mountain State Park is free to visit and there are no parking fees currently in the park. This my friends, is a rare find anymore.
Check out our “Exploring Stone Mountain State Park” video on YouTube
Parks & Waterfalls
Stone Mountain features waterfalls off the side of the mountain and numerous streams, that are great for fishing. Additionally there are smaller waterfalls that are still very lovely. These smaller falls also make for a great spot for a picnic or just to enjoy the relaxing sounds.
Cascade Falls is just off the Blue Ridge Parkway in Deep Gap, NC. The falls are only about a 30 minute drive from North Wilkesboro. The hike to the falls is less than mile round trip and you can enjoy a stunning view of the falls off the mountain for your efforts.
W. Kerr Scott Dam, was created to stop the destructive flooding that destroyed countless property and took many lives in the early 20th century. It is now a state recreational area with hiking, biking, picnic areas, fishing and playgrounds.
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Hiking, Biking and Walking
Hiking can be found all over Wilkes County and along the Blue Ridge Parkway. As mentioned in the previous section, Stone Mountain State Park and W. Kerr Scott Dam, offer numerous hiking trails. Not only can you find easy trails, but there are moderate and strenuous trails as well.
Warrior Creek Mountain Bike Trail is considered one of the best in the world by the International Mountain Bike Association. Located in W. Kerr Scott Dam Park, this trail is popular amongst bikers, runners and hikers.
Yadkin Valley Greenway extends all over North Wilkesboro along the Yadkin River, and consists of mostly flat paved surfaces. Those who want to walk and bike, but are not necessarily up to the strenuous hiking in the mountains, will love this Greenway.
Add a Little Shine & Sparkle to Your Trip
Try Some Moonshine
North Wilkesboro was once named the “Moonshine Capital of the World”, by the head of the ATF. Obviously this little piece of North Wilkesboro history makes the area so much more fun and interesting. Of course, you will want to make a visit to a Distillery part of your itin- erary if you visit North Wilkesboro. Well, you are in luck! There are two that just happen to be located here.
First of all, Call Family Distillers is family owned and has been making moonshine since 1868. The family has a long and interesting history including the fact that Reverend Dan Call taught Jack Daniels how to make whiskey. Plus Willie Clay Call, nicknamed “the Un- catchable”, because he was never caught in his high speed chases with the law.
Copper Barrel Distillery was founded in 2013 by George Smith and Buck Nance. George, President and CEO, had a vision of crafting legal Moonshine in the beautiful town of North Wilkesboro. Buck, Master Distiller, is a long time moonshiner who also was a fabricator for NASCAR. Buck designed & fabricated the world’s first legal steam-injected distillation system, which is used to make Copper Barrel Shine. In fact, the two together have made Copper Barrel the success it is today.
Each distillery has it’s own unique origin story and offer tours and tastings. The Copper Barrel is open for tours everyday from 11- 6 pm and the Call Family Distillers offer tours and tasting Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
So Many Wineries to Choose From
When it comes to outdoor fun and activities in North Wilkesboro, you must visit at least one Winery and Vineyard. There are multiple to choose from and each have their own unique style and flair, but all are enjoyable. There is a complete list of wineries in the North Wilkesboro area at Visit North Wilkesboro website.
A few others that are worth mentioning are as follows:
Grassy Creek Vineyard– A former Dairy Farm, the Dairy Barn is now the winery. They offer cabins available for rentals and events, and there’s also a short trail along grassy creek to enjoy – Open everyday.
Roaring River Vineyards – located on the Roaring River offers a Restaurant, Bed & Breakfast, as well as host events. Summer Tours & Tastings are Thurs-Sunday. Fall & Winter Tours & Tastings are Fri-Sun.
Slightly Askew Winery – Definitely not your typical winery as they say. They have a fun and funky vibe and use local juices to flavor their wines. They have wines for everyone, but favor the “sweet” side which is my favorite.
Of course, a stop at one of the wineries is one of the top outdoor fun & activities options in this area of North Carolina.
Unique Experiences Near North Wilkesboro
Visit NASCAR’S First Raceway
Yes, the North Wilkesboro Speedway, was the very first NASCAR raceway. It probably won’t surprise you that it was built by moonshiners. I guess they had so much fun outrunning the police while bootlegging moonshine, that they wanted to make a sport of it. This Speedway was a proud host to NASCAR races from 1949 to 1996. It was also where many of the most famous NASCAR champions became stars, including Bobby Allison, Richard Petty and Dale Earnhardt.
Even though the Speedway was abandoned in 1996, I am excited to announce that is back in business! Recent efforts by Wilkes County, NASCAR greats and the state of North Carolina have it up and running again! Therefore you can actually enjoy a genuine Nascar Race as part of your vacation! Probably one of the most exciting outdoor activities near North Wilkesboro!
The track located just outside of town on US 421, better known as Junior Johnson Memorial Highway.
One little fun fact about the North Wilkesboro Speedway after it was abandoned. The folks at Disney-Pixar thought it still had a special appeal and would be the perfect ghost track. Consequently, this lead to the Speedway being the inspiration for Thomasville Speedway in “Cars 3”.
Click Here to Plan Your Adventure Today
Finally, you will easily be able to plan your trip with all these outdoor activities near North Wilkesboro. If you are interested in more things to do in North Wilkesboro, check out my post Things to Do in North Wilkesboro.
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