RALEIGH, N.C. – As our state continues to feel the effects of COVID-19, some families may be looking for ways to enjoy the warmer weather while still staying safe through social distancing. One way to do this is by visiting North Carolina’s state forests, which remain open to the public. As more and more North Carolinians work from home, consider taking advantage of state forests to take a break from staying indoors while maintaining a safe distance from other people.
Please note that some trails may be closed at some locations. Below is a list of North Carolina state forests and where you can find them:
- Bladen Lakes State Forest, 4470 NC Highway 242 N, Elizabethtown
- Clemmons Educational State Forest, 2411 Old U.S. 70 West, Clayton
- Dupont State Forest, Staton Road, Cedar Mountain
- Holmes, 129 Educational State Forest, 9 Crab Creek Road, Hendersonville
- Jordan Lake Educational State Forest , 2832 Big Woods Road, Chapel Hill
- Headwaters State Forest, Southern Transylvania County
- Mountain Island Educational State Forest, 534 Killian Road, Stanley
- Rendezvous Mountain Educational State Forest, 1956 Rendezvous Mtn. Road, Purlear
- Turnbull Creek Educational State Forest, 4803 Sweet Home Church Road, Elizabethtown
- Tuttle Educational State Forest, 3420 Playmore Beach Road, Lenoir
If you plan on visiting your local state forest, it is still important to observe certain guidelines to keep you and your family safe from COVID-19. Keep distance between yourself and other visitors as much as possible, and avoid touching your face with unwashed hands. It is important to note that, as of March 16, most public bathroom facilities at state forests are temporarily closed, so consider washing your hands before leaving your home and bringing your own hand sanitizer. Some portable toilets and handwashing stations may be available depending on the individual site.
–Andrea Ashby, NCDA&CS