State Park

North Carolina Zoo

The North Carolina Zoo in Asheboro will be closed Saturday and Sunday. Zoo staff must clear more than 5 miles of walkways inside the park. The facility will likely reopen Monday.

In addition, the NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources reports:

State park in Hillsborough overlooking the Eno River, forest, trees
Laura Candler

North Carolina's state parks will offer free hikes on New Year's Day, along with educational opportunities for children and adults alike. More than 40 outings are scheduled, rain or shine, as a healthy way to ring in the new year. Some hikes will be only a couple of miles, while others will run as long as 5 miles.

It's the third year the state parks system has offered free First Day Hikes. Park officials expect thousands to attend across the state.

The Blue Ridge Parkway is finally getting a management plan. The long-delayed outline for the next twenty years goes to a series of public hearings starting later today. Phil Francis is the park's Superintendent. He says much of the land that forms the backdrop for many of the views along the parkway's 469 miles is privately owned.

Great Dismal Swamp

It's tough to imagine the 112,000 muck-filled, bug-swarmed acres of the Great Dismal Swamp looking like paradise. But for enslaved people in the 18th- and 19th-century, the swamp provided protection from those who wished to keep them in bondage.

Visitors to the North Carolina State Parks can take advantage of a new smart phone app. The Pocket Ranger Mobile Tour Guide can be downloaded from the iTunes Store and Android Market. It includes maps for parks and campgrounds and a social networking tool that allows users to share experiences in real time. 
The State Parks' Charlie Peek says it's the first app of its kind to offer so many features. 

Chimney Rock Park Plans Posted

Nov 29, 2010
Chimney Rock

The public gets its first look today at the draft master plans for the new Chimney Rock State Park.  The landmark near Asheville has been one of western North Carolina’s top attractions for decades.  In 2007, its private owners sold it to the state to become part of a large new state park at Hickory Nut Gorge.