The Holmes Educational State Forest is located in the Blue Ridge Mountains. The forest offers picnic tables with grills and picnic shelter that seats up to 60 as well as ranger led adult and family programs. With rugged terrain, numerous rock outcroppings, and scenic vistas, it also offers a rich mixture of mountain hardwoods, rhododendron, flame azaleas, and a variety of wildflowers.These features are accessible by a series of well-marked trails, which are accented by exhibits and displays depicting the ecology of the managed forest. There are NO fees for any program at the forest.
Holmes Educational State Forest has been providing the citizens of North Carolina a living outdoor classroom where visitors of all ages can learn about the local natural forest environment since 1977. The forest, which started out as a nursery developed by the Civilian Conservation Corps, has now become one of seven educational state forests located throughout the state. The land along Crab Creek Road was obtained by the state in the mid-1930’s to provide North Carolina landowners White pine and Yellow poplar seedlings. By the late 1960’s the state moved the nursery to Avery County and developed Holmes has a small state forest. Since then, the forest has grown into a diverse woodscape that includes many other plant species from herbs on the forest floor to towering forest trees.
Season: Open Mid-March through the Friday before Thanksgiving. We are closed on Mondays. We are open Tuesday-Friday, 9am-5pm and we are open Saturday and Sunday 10am-6pm.