Occoneechee Mountain State Natural Area is located on 190 acres in Hillsborough and has about 3 miles of hiking trails. The rugged terrain supports an ecosystem more typical in western, mountainous regions. Occoneechee's brown elfin butterfly population is 100 miles further east than any other. The natural area contains a former quarry and a portion of the Eno River.
Occoneechee Mountain Loop Trail (2.2 miles, moderate)
Summit Trail (0.35 mile, moderate)
Brown Elfin Knob Trail (0.15 mile, easy)
Overlook Trail (0.10 mile, easy)
White-tailed deer, beavers, river otters, woodchucks, muskrats, chipmunks, squirrels, raccoons, opossums, skunks, rabbits, fish, salamanders, snakes, turtles, frogs, toads, lizards, skinks, great blue herons, green herons, belted kingfishers, songbirds, hummingbirds, bats, hawks, owls, woodpeckers, black vultures, turkey vultures, geese, ducks, wild turkeys, butterflies, moths, dragonflies, damselflies, grasshoppers, and crickets.
Mountain laurel, catawba rhododendron, lady's thumb, wildflowers, sunflowers, galax, holly, ivy, ferns, mushrooms, honeysuckles, strawberries, blackberries, huckleberries, sumac, poison ivy, river birch, ironwoods, dogwoods, eastern red cedars, beech trees, oak trees, pine trees, red maples, black walnuts, yellow poplars, eastern hemlocks.
Occoneechee Mountain — the highest point in Orange County at 867 feet.
Eno River Association