Kings Mountain Offers History and Hiking

As one of 16 State Parks built by the Civilian Conservation Corps, the 6,885-acre Kings Mountain State Park boasts two lakes for fishing along with camping, hiking, equestrian facilities AND an 1800's living history farm.

You can also visit the adjacent Kings Mountain National Military Park which offers a peak into history as a Revolutionary War site famous for the Battle of Kings Mountain, considered a major turning point in the War. Thomas Jefferson called it "The turn of the tide of success." Walk through the museum, visitor's center and actual battlefield site and picture yourself as a Revolutionary Soldier, getting ready for the battle.

Pitch a Tent

Camping is a main draw at Kings Mountain State Park and the park features 115 standard sites, 10 tent sites, 15 equestrian sites and a primitive group camping area for up to 30 people. The campground also has restroom facilities with hot showers and packed-gravel sites with water and electrical hookups.

Down at the Farm

The Living History Farm is a replica of an 1800's South Carolina yeoman farm, complete with a barn, cotton gin, weaves shop and blacksmith/carpenter shop. It also has two herb gardens, a vegetable garden and field to depict how essential it was for lower-class yeoman farmers to grow their own food for their families and animals, make their own medicines from herbs and grow enough cotton to make clothing. Self-guided tours of the farm are available.

Hike the Trails

Hiking trails abound at the park with more than 20 miles of trails. The 1.5 mile Farm Trail is probably the most popular, taking hikers by Lake Crawford, the old bathhouse and around to the Living History Farm. The 1.8-mile Ridgeline is also popular and connects two states (South Carolina and North Carolina) and three parks (Kings Mountain State Park, Kings Mountain National Military Park and Crowder's Mountain State Park in North Carolina). The park also has a 16-mile trail that traverses the entire park that is shared with horses. Hikers are warned with signs that they need to allow plenty of time if they are going to try to tackle this hike.

The Kings Mountain Gateway Trail is also nearby and part of the new Carolina Thread Trail, a regional trail network named for the rich regional heritage of weaving fabric. This trail will eventually link the City of Kings Mountain to Crowder's Mountain State Park, Kings Mountain State Park and Kings Mountain National Military Park. The first 2.26 miles of the trail recently opened to the public.

Cast a line

Fishing is another popular activity at the park with both the 63-acre Lake York and the 13-acre Lake Crawford were built by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). Bass, bream crappie and catfish are the top catches and fishing is allowed from the bank of Lake Crawford or you can rent a fishing boat, pedal boat or canoe on Lake York.

So bring your hiking boots, fishing poles and camping gear and enjoy the cooler weather and holiday activities at Kings Mountain State Park.

To get there

The Kings Mountain Gateway trail head is located about 1/2 of a mile south of Downtown Kings Mountain at 807 S. Battleground Avenue at the corner of Quarry Road. 

Sherry Jackson is a freelance writer, editor and entrepreneur. Her articles have been featured in InfoWorld Magazine,Entrepreneur.com, USA Today, Blue Ridge Country, Jetsetter, Bootsnall, Gadling, Yahoo, See the South, Beckett Media, The Simpsonville Sentinel and many other print and online publications. For clips and examples of her work, please visit her website at www.dragonflyventures.com