Chimney Rock State Park, Growing Slowly

Chimney Rock - Ch. 7

Chimney Rock State Park is growing – slowly.

The state’s purchase of land around Rumbling Bald Mountain will expand Chimney Rock State Park by more than 20 percent.

The N.C. Council of State will pay the Nature Conservancy $4.2 million for 1,222 acres at Rumbling Bald, which is just north of Chimney Rock in Hickory Nut Gorge.

The tract includes Rumbling Bald Mountain, with its massive rock face visible from Lake Lure, steep cliffs, granite domes and a mature hickory forest. The state park now comprises more than 5,700 acres.

This sounds wonderful but it’s going to take a long time. The master plan for Chimney Rock State Park calls for development of three day use areas in phases over the next 20 years. The Rumbling Bald area, which has a great hike and is also popular with rock climbers, is to be developed in phase three.

Twenty years! And there are always delays.

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