North Carolina parks record breaking visitation 2020

Pilot Mountain State Park in Surry and Yadkin counties will celebrate its 50th anniversary this month with a day full of events at the park.

The area near the big and little pinnacles in the Sauratown Mountains became a state park in 1968. The park now consists of more than 3,800 acres and includes a section along the Yadkin River.  

Activities will begin at 10 a.m. July 24 with a “Year of the Fish” program for kids at the Pilot Creek access off Boyd Nelson Road and wrap up with a sunset hike around the Big Pinnacle at 8 p.m. The celebration will include live music, a food truck, and a presentation about the future of the park at 5 p.m. at the summit picnic area.

“We look forward to celebrating the 50th anniversary of Pilot Mountain State Park with staff, friends, volunteers, neighbors, and everyone else who loves the outdoors,” State Park Director Dwayne Patterson said. “The events will offer enjoyment for everyone and will highlight the reasons Pilot Mountain is an important part of its community and the state park system.” 

Pilot Mountain became North Carolina’s 14th state park in 1968, due in large part to the efforts of a group of local citizens. Prior to that time, the mountain was a commercial tourist attraction. The park offers trails, camping, climbing and spectacular scenery.

The mountain summit is connected to the Yadkin River section by a 6.5-mile trail corridor. An extensive trail network is augmented by a bridle trail and a canoe trail section on the river. Rock climbing and rappelling are allowed on portions of the park’s steep cliffs. 

More information about the park and the 50th anniversary celebration can be found on the park’s website at


photo credit/Jordan Kiser


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