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Year-round access to the Pisgah National Forest, in our unforgettable region of the Blue Ridge.

Find canoe, kayak, tube rentals and local guided tour operators taking you down the Catawba River, on Lake James, floating the Toe River, or rappelling classes and trips with local adventure guides Thrifty Adventures and Catawba River Outdoors.  

Explore a trail! With over 20 waterfall and hiking trails, vineyard trails, off road biking trails, a 200 + quilt block trail and, of course, our driving trails, we'll help you relax throughout the year.

We're also known for our mining history.  Visit former commercial mines offering authentic, recreational mining fun with gold and gems.

Search our "play list" to find attractions, trails and more.  Lake James State Park, golf courses, museums and galleries.  If you need a little help finding the perfect spot, call us toll free.  888-233-6111

Andrews Geyser

Andrews Geyser

**Andrews Geyser Park is open, however, the "geyser" itself is non-operational, while the Town of Old Fort makes repairs to ...

  • Phone
    828-668-4244
Blue Ridge Pinnacle

Blue Ridge Pinnacle

Prominent peak near Mt. Mitchell State Park, with awesome views.  Begin at swing-bar gate on side road at Blue Ridge ...

Buck Creek

Buck Creek

(Game land section) 200 yards along NC 80 also light fishing pressure.

Catawba Falls

Catawba Falls

The Headwaters of the Catawba River and protected by conservation easements, this 340 foot cascade includes an upper and lower ...

  • Phone
    828-668-4282
Catawba River at Joseph McDowell Greenway

Catawba River at Joseph McDowell Greenway

Easy walk in access, handicap accessible fishing piers and canoe/kayak access available from three points along the greenway.  This ...

Catawba River Park and Canoe Launch

Catawba River Park and Canoe Launch

Catawba River Park and Canoe/Kayak Launch is located within one quarter mile of the intersection of Highway 70 West ...

Crabtree Falls

Crabtree Falls

A 60 foot plunge down a wide and even rock face, located off the Blue Ridge Parkway at Milepost 339 ...

Curtis Creek

Curtis Creek

A rushing trout stream, stocked with Brook Trout, Rainbow Trout and Brown Trout, with handicapped access overlook on left side ...

Curtis Creek Campground

Curtis Creek Campground

U.S. Forest Service Recreation Area with over 10,000 acres in the Pisgah National Forest including Mackey Mountain, a ...

  • Phone
    828-652-2144
Dugger's Creek Falls

Dugger's Creek Falls

On the Blue Ridge Parkway at Milepost 316.5 (the Linville Falls parking area and visitor center).  In the parking ...

McDowell County Placeholder

East McDowell Middle School

The auditorium of East Middle School in Marion, NC is a venue for Foothills Community Theater performances. Throughout the year ...

  • Phone
    828-652-7711
Geneva Hall

Geneva Hall

Geneva Hall is located in "uptown" Little Switzerland at the end of HIgh Ridge Road, beside the Switzerland Inn.  Geneva ...

Heartbreak Ridge

Heartbreak Ridge

As the name implies, this down hill, four mile bike trail descends approximately 2,000 feet and is a true ...

Historic Old Fort

Historic Old Fort

Historic Old Fort is a quaint community of 900+ and regularly celebrates its heritage with mountain music performances, preservation of ...

  • Phone
    828-668-4282
Joseph McDowell/Catawba River Greenway

Joseph McDowell/Catawba River Greenway

The Joseph McDowell/Catawba River Greenway is located just outside downtown Marion, NC.  This paved trail follows the flow of ...

  • Phone
    828-668-4282
Kitsuma Peak

Kitsuma Peak

Breath taking views along Kitsuma Trail and Young's Ridge.  This one is not for the faint of heart!  ...

Mackey Mountain

Mackey Mountain

Excellent views inside a BEAR sanctuary, hunting is illegal!!  Hike this area with caution, particularly during spring and fall seasons ...

  • Phone
    828-668-4282
McDowell High School

McDowell High School

McDowell High School's auditorium and gymnasium are used for some public events.   The annual Appalachian Potters' Market is ...

  • Phone
    828-652-7920
Mill Creek

Mill Creek

Old Fort has the distinction of being a certified N.C. Mountain Trout Town!  Why?  Mill Creek runs through the ...

Mill Creek Village

Mill Creek Village

Mill Creek Village is located in downtown Old Fort, NC and is comprised of the following businesses and attractions.  ...

  • Phone
    828-668-4282
Newberry Creek Trail

Newberry Creek Trail

Scenic trail ending at Blue Ridge Parkway.  Top elevation is 4,300 feet.  East of Old Fort, take Curtis Creek ...

  • Phone
    828-668-4282
North Fork Catawba River

North Fork Catawba River

Download the river access map here or use these GPS coordinates to find access points for the North Fork Catawba ...

Peavine Trail

Peavine Trail

The Peavine Rail Line, once an active Norfolk Southern Railway line, is included in the company's "rails to trails ...

  • Phone
    828-652-3551
Point Lookout Trail

Point Lookout Trail

Spectacular views of the Royal Gorge and 19th century railroad tunnels.  Paved, hiking and bicycle trail rising approximately 1,000 ...

  • Phone
    828-668-4282
Roaring Creek Falls

Roaring Creek Falls

You'll find this one in the Toecane District of Pisgah National Forest with a 30 foot rush down a ...

Setrock Creek Falls

Setrock Creek Falls

This one includes four distinctive levels, totaling 50 feet of falling water.   Refer to directions for Roaring Creek Falls ...

Snook's Nose Trail

Snook's Nose Trail

This is a rocky, single track path used by hikers and mountain biking enthusiasts.  Trail crosses Slick Falls Branch climbing ...

  • Phone
    828-668-4282
Star Gap Trail

Star Gap Trail

From the Old Fort Picnic Area, continue onto Mill Creek Road, passing Andrews Geyser on left to road's end ...

The Flats Off Road Park

The Flats Off Road Park

The Flats is a large tract of land specifically constructed to challenge the most rugged 4-wheeler.  This facility hosts special ...

  • Phone
    828-442-7932
Tom Johnson's Camping Center

Tom Johnson's Camping Center

Tom Johnson's Camping Center is more than a campground, it also serves as a performance/event venue.  Located beside ...

  • Phone
    800-225-7802
Tom's Creek Falls

Tom's Creek Falls

Tom's Creek Falls is accessible year round, located south of the Blue Parkway at Milepost 316/Hwy. 221 South ...

Woodlawn Fitness Trail

Woodlawn Fitness Trail

Fitness Trail consists of 7 stations, two exercises per station on a 1/4 mile jogging path.  Additional one mile ...

  • Phone
    828-668-4282
Woods Mountain Trail

Woods Mountain Trail

Hike or bike this one.  It's not for the faint at heart!  Elevation peaks at 3,600 ...

  • Phone
    828-668-4282
Woody's Original Mountain Music House

Woody's Original Mountain Music House

Join Max Woody and friends each Friday night to experience one-of-a-kind bluegrass music with local performers.  Any and all musicians ...

  • Phone
    828-724-4158
Young's Ridge

Young's Ridge

Trailhead begins inside the Old Fort Picnic Area with incredible views of Kitsuma Peak at trail end.  Elevation is 3 ...

  • Phone
    828-668-4282

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