Stay awhile in Wilkes County, where great weather and abundant natural resources make it easy to enjoy the outdoors, especially at these places:
More than 700,000 people annually visit W. Kerr Scott Dam and Reservoir to enjoy activities such as boating, canoeing, fishing, hiking, kayaking, paddleboarding, wakeboarding and waterskiing. The 1,475-acre lake has 55 miles of shoreline, seven boat launches and a marina.
Foothills Outdoor Adventures provides everything you need for a safe and enjoyable water experience. The company has rentals for fun on both the Yadkin River and W. Kerr Scott Reservoir, with equipment choices that include canoes, paddle boats, tubes and river tubs that hold up to eight people – and even dogs.
Beauty and function are the key assets of the Yadkin River Greenway, a seven-section exercise facility for walkers, joggers and bicyclists that also preserves wildlife, vegetation and streams. Highlights include a 1.9-mile Mulberry walking trail that offers river access and a fishing pier. A short .15-mile Moravian Creek section extends to Wilkes Community College.
Also in Wilkes County, Dark Mountain Trail includes 8 miles of mountain bike and rugged hiking pathways, with several small numbered and named loops. They include “Snake” and “Lake,” which both feature challenging climbs and descents.
Head to Stone Mountain State Park if you want a good workout with a scenic view. Activities include trail hiking and horseback riding, and a 600-foot granite face that is ideal for intense rock climbing. Another premium place to hike and enjoy spectacular views is Rendezvous Mountain Educational State Forest, which schedules several family-friendly educational programs.
Fishing and Campgrounds
Fishing is off the hook in Wilkes County, with many spots to catch brown, rainbow and speckled trout as well as bass and walleye. Popular fly-fishing spots include Reddies River, Roaring River, Stone Mountain Creek, W. Kerr Scott Reservoir and dozens of creeks and streams. An annual Kids Fishing Day takes place every second Saturday in April and every third Saturday in October at Cub Creek Park, where the creek is stocked prior to the event.
Campgrounds in Wilkes County are also easy to find. Stone Mountain State Park has 90 sites for backpackers and RVs, while Bandits Roost Campground on the south side of W. Kerr Scott Reservoir is another popular camping destination. Moravian Falls Family Campground has RV hookups, cabin rentals, walking trails and a 60-foot waterfall.
Wilkes has three disc golf courses: the newest, a course in Wilkesboro at Fort Hamby Park on the waters of W. Kerr Scott Dam and Reservoir; Highland Hills Disc Golf Course at Municipal Park in North Wilkesboro; and Rolling Pines Disc Golf Course in North Wilkesboro. All three are 18-basket courses and feature unique natural scenery.