This past weekend was the last camping trip of the year for me. I have had some great adventures camping and this last one was no exception. We headed out to Morrow Mountain State Park for a weekend of camping, hiking, campfires, time in the hammock, good food and good friends. And completely out of our control, we had wonderful weather for December.
Located in Stanly County, development of the park began in the 1930s through the efforts of a local committee interested in establishing a state park in the area. By 1937, more than 3,000 acres of land had been acquired, much of it donated by the citizens of Stanly County. The park was opened to the public in the summer of 1939. Early development of park property was a cooperative effort between state and federal governments. Work crews of the Civilian Conservation Corps and the Work Projects Administration constructed many of the facilities. Additional facilities were added with state funds in the 1950s and 1960s. Today, the park covers 4,742 acres.
While exploring the park, I found a great swimming pool and community building that is connected to the park office. The day I was there, a group was prepping for an event later that day. The park also has a great museum that highlights the history of the area and the park. After the 3 mile hike from the museum to the top of Morrow Mountain, I had the opportunity to read several of the educational exhibits about the volcanic rock Rhyolite. This rock was very popular with prehistoric peoples. The rock exhibits a property called conchoidal fracture. When the rock is broken, it forms shell-like fractures that create a very sharp edge that can be shaped into sharp points, knives, scrapers, and axes.
While at the top we enjoyed our lunch at a picnic shelter that overlooked the area and even had a fireplace. After the 3 mile trek to the bottom, it was time to relax, shower and prep dinner. In my opinion, it was a great way to spend the day.
If you are looking for a quiet place to camp and maybe even enjoy the nearby rivers and lakes, consider a visit to Morrow Mountain. With one campground loop open year-round, you could always visit the next time we have an unseasonably warm weekend. Visit the State Parks website at https://www.ncparks.gov/morrow-mountain-state-park
to learn more about Morrow Mountain State Park.