25 acres added to Morrow Mountain State Park

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 22, 2019

Three Rivers Land Trust has partnered with the North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation to add 25 acres to Morrow Mountain State Park in Stanly County.

The newly acquired property has mature hardwood forests and frontage along Mountain Creek.

The acquisition was made possible through funding from the N.C. Parks and Recreation Trust Fund and Clean Water Management Trust Fund.

The site is part of Stony Hill Church Hardwoods, which is identified as a natural heritage area by the N.C. Natural Heritage Program because of its mature hardwood forests and rocky outcroppings.

Mountain Creek is a pristine stream that is home to a variety of species of rare and endangered mussels. A large population of a rare plant known as ravine sedge (Carex impressinervia) can be found on the property, as well.

“Three Rivers Land Trust is proud of our long-standing commitment to expanding public access. While adding 25 acres to Morrow Mountain will be one of our smaller conservation projects in 2019, it is one of our most important,” said Executive Director Travis Morehead. “Including this property, the Land Trust and our partners at State Parks have added 75 acres to Morrow Mountain in the past two years.”

“I am thrilled with this addition to Morrow Mountain State Park,” said Superintendent Jeff Davidson. “Mountain Creek is one of the most special features in the park, and this acquisition will allow us to protect these natural resources, provide education to our visitors about their importance, and offer opportunities to enjoy this beautiful area with low-impact recreation.”

Gary and Nancy Deeck, the landowners, worked with Three Rivers Land Trust and the Division of Parks and Recreation to conserve the property.

A dedication of the new property will be held at 11 a.m. Tuesday at the picnic shelter on top of Morrow Mountain. If it rains, the ceremony will be moved to the lodge adjacent to the park office. The ceremony is free and open to the public.

Duke Energy recently donated 62 acres to the park that had been leased by the park since 1941. Along the shoreline and banks of Lake Tillery, the donated land includes lake access facilities. The donation allows the park to sustain or expand recreational operations on Lake Tillery and to conserve the shoreline.

To learn more about Three Rivers Land Trust, contact Crystal Cockman at 704-647-0302 or crystal@threeriverslandtrust.org. More information about Morrow Mountain State Park is at ncparks.gov/morrow-mountain.