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another view of Stone Mountain
Stone Mountain State Park
Closest available address
3042 Frank Parkway Roaring Gap, NC 28668
Park hours vary, generally 8-6, longer in summer. Homestead open weekends in summer.
Best time to visit
Summer, Fall, Spring
Established in 1969, Stone Mountain State Park is a 14,200 acre park in western North Carolina. The park’s namesake Stone Mountain is a Natural National Landmark granite rock formation with a 600 foot protrusion. Hiking is the main park activity, and there are over 18 miles of trails. Additional options include rock climbing, camping and picnicking. The park also has a historic homestead and waterfalls.
Stone Mountain Park is a heavily forested landscape with thick stands of oak, maple and pine trees. There are also a number of cool and clear mountain streams. Prior to becoming a park, the land was settled by poor farmers of western European descent. Their history is preserved in the Hutchinson Homestead which was built in the mid-1800s. A Baptist church later built in 1897 is still in use today. The park borders the Blue Ridge Parkway, and Stone Mountain is visible from the parkway.
This park was an impromptu visit while driving along the parkway. The visitor center had displays about the early settlements as well as a few animals. The exhibits were simple but were moderately interesting. With only a few hours to see the park, a ranger advised a short hike to Stone Mountain Falls and then taking the Stone Mountain Trail out to see the homestead and Stone Mountain. The trails were easy, but the Stone Mountain Trail has a more difficult section that includes the mountain summit. The falls were pretty, but water volume was light. The trail out to the homestead was a shady and relaxing hike. Homestead buildings were closed at the time - aim for a summer weekend if you want to see them. With the exception of some massively annoying gnats, the homestead area was a pleasant place to walk around and view the mountain. Had there been more time, some additional trails would have been hiked, but the parkway beckoned. Stone Mountain is a quiet and enjoyable setting to connect with nature and view mountain scenery. Those into the outdoors will most enjoy a visit here.
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