CAMP: Camping hot spots in Western North Carolina

Apr 19, 2017

Davidson River Campground

Located at the entrance to Pisgah National Forest in the Brevard area. The Davidson River is a premier trout stream. Located nearby is the Cradle of Forestry. Open year-round. The campground is located at 1 Davidson River Circle, Pisgah Forest For reservations, call 877-444-6777, or visit

North Mills River Recreation Area

The North Mills River runs through this recreation area and camping facility. Each campsite is only a short stroll from the river. Swimming, fishing and river tubing. Open year-round with limited service November through March. Located at 5289 N. Mills River Road, Mills River. For reservations call 877-444-6777 or visit at

Lake Powhatan Recreational Area

Lake Powhatan offers peace, quiet and solitude on the border of Bent Creek. Camping, swimming, fishing, hiking trails.  Beach and fishing pier. Open April through October. It's located at 375 Wesley Branch Road, Asheville. To make a reservation, call 877-444-6777, or visit

Blue Ridge Parkway

There are six campgrounds open to the public on the Parkway in North Carolina from May 1 through October. Facilities are limited in winter. Fees are charged and length of stay may be limited. Camping is permitted only in designated campgrounds. Drinking water and comfort stations are provided; shower and laundry facilities are not. Sites in each campground are designated for trailers but none is equipped for utility connections. Campgrounds have sanitary dumping stations. Each campsite has a table and fireplace. 

Milepost 241.1: Doughton Park
Milepost 297.1: Julian Price Memorial Park
Milepost 316.4: Linville Falls
Milepost 339.5: Crabtree Meadows
Milepost 408.6: Mount Pisgah
Milepost 418.8: Graveyard Fields

For further information, call the Blue Ridge Parkway headquarters at 828-298-0398.

Tsali Campground

Tsali Campground is located at the Tsali Recreation Area, near Bryson City, Cherokee, and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The campground offers 42 sites in all and is perfect for tent camping.  The sites are $15 per and the campground offers showers, flush toilets, ample room for tent pads, picnic tables, paved access, lantern posts and fire rings. It is open from April through October. Call 828-479-6431 or 828-479-3790.

Lake James State Park

A variety of camping options: 20 walk-in campsites are located along the shoreline at the Catawba River area - with fire pit, picnic table and room for a six-person tent, plus washhouse and hot showers. Boat-in camping on the Long Arm Peninsula with 30 campsites with fire pit, table and space for six-person tent. Reservations are required. Canoes and kayaks for rent. Cost is $10-$23/night. Located 50 miles east of Asheville at 2785 highway 126 in Nebo. Call 828-584-7728.

South Mountains State Park

Family campground has 18 campsites with picnic table and fire circle. Bathhouse with hot showers. Make reservations or stop at park office upon arrival. They also have 20 backpack camping sites in six remote areas of the park. Each camping area has a pit toilet. The equestrian camping area has 15 campsites, 33-stall barn and washhouse with hot showers and flush toilets. Open year round. Located about 70 miles east of Asheville at 3001 South Mountains State Park Ave. in Connelly Springs. Call 828-433-4772.

Mount Mitchell State Park

Camp on the highest peak east of the Mississippi. The nine-site family campground is open throughout the year. Only tent camping is allowed. Each site is equipped with a grill and picnic table. Restrooms provided, but showers and hot water are not. Campers may leave vehicles in the park overnight to backpack into the Pisgah National Forest. Be prepared for extreme weather changes and temperatures about 20 degrees cooler than Asheville. The campground is located at 2388 State Hwy 128 in Burnsville. Call 828-675-4611.