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Saturday, October 7

Annual Passholder Sunrise Breakfast
Time: Gates open 6:30-7:00am for 7:29am sunrise.
Cost: $12 Adult Annual Passholder; $6 Youth Annual Passholder. Advance registration required.
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Imagine watching the sunrise over Lake Lure and the Hickory Nut Gorge with a warm cup of coffee in hand. Our annual passholders enjoy early access to the Park at this exclusive event. Savor your delicious breakfast prepared by the Old Rock Cafe and hit the trails after sunrise to take advantage of the quiet before the Park opens. This event is exclusively for Annual Passholders.

Saturday, October 7 - Saturday, October 28

Fall Animal Encounters
Time: Saturdays at 2pm.
Cost: Included with Park admission.
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Do you know our staff has a wild side? Join a Park naturalist to meet some of our live Animal Ambassadors and learn about the types of wildlife in the area and their jobs. Some of our best educators have feathers, fur, shells or scales!

Sunday, October 15 - Wednesday, November 15

Fall Photo Contest: “Autumn Trails”
Time: 12:00 am - 11:59 pm
Cost: Included with Park admission.
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The trails come alive in fall as the trees transform and leaves blanket the paths. This contest will round out our celebration of NC State Parks’ Year of the Trail. We can’t wait to see the photos you capture as you enjoy fall hiking in the Park. Enter your best shots to win prizes!


1st Prize: The winning photo will be our Facebook cover photo for two weeks, and the photographer will receive two annual passes to Chimney Rock State Park and lunch for four at the Old Rock Café.

2nd Prize: After the first place photo, the second place photo will be our Facebook cover photo for one week. The photographer will receive one annual pass to Chimney Rock State Park and lunch for two at the Old Rock Café.

3rd Prize: The third place photographer will receive two adult day passes (or one family pack of day passes) to Chimney Rock State Park and lunch for two at the Old Rock Café.


  1. There is no fee to enter the contest. All photographs must be taken of Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park only in areas accessible to guests between October 15, 2023 – November 15, 2023.
    The contest is open to amateur and professional photographers.
  2. Up to three photos per person can be submitted via any of the following ways to be eligible to win:
    • Facebook: First, like the Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park page. Next, send us a private message including your contact information specified in rule #3.
    • E-mail: If you don’t have access to social media, you may email your digital photo with your contact information specified in rule #3 to [email protected].
  3. Every entry should be clearly labeled with the photographer’s name, city & state, a brief photo caption, an email address and the best phone number to reach you.
  4. Photos should be available at a minimum resolution of 1200 x 1600 pixels (1 MB minimum) to be eligible to win. Photos taken via smart phones, tablets and other mobile devices are welcome if they meet minimum requirements.
  5. For entries showing human faces, you must list their name(s) and have written permission from any photographed person(s) to use their image.
  6. Entries should reflect the photographer’s interpretation of the theme. Emphasis will be placed on quality, composition and creativity. All entries may be used in promotions of Chimney Rock and park-related activities.
  7. Digital images can be optimized but not dramatically altered with photo editing software. Black and white photographs are welcome.
  8. Winners will be chosen by a team of Chimney Rock staff. Decisions regarding winners are final.

Winners will be notified personally and announced on Chimney Rock’s social media. For more information, call 1-828-625-9611, ext. 1812 or email us at [email protected].

Saturday, October 21

Nature at Night Hike
Time: 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
Cost: Includes Park admission: $25 Adult, $8 Adult Annual Passholder, $15 Youth, $6 Youth Annual Passholder. Advance Registration Required.
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Watch as the Park comes alive under the shadow of darkness on this guided evening excursion with a Park naturalist. Do you know which animals come out along the Hickory Nut Falls trail when the sun goes down? Get ready to learn more about the Park’s rarely-seen residents. Note: The Hickory Nut Falls trail is approximately 3/4 of a mile each direction and is considered a moderate trail. Participants must be able to hike the trail out and back. This trail is not suitable for wheelchairs or strollers.

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