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Natural History

Natural_History_Shoreline.jpgBlue Jay Point County Park is a 236-acre park that was once primarily agricultural land. A majority of this acreage is now second-growth forestlands. We have roughly three acres dedicated to open play fields, playgrounds, an environmental education center and an overnight lodge.

Blue Jay Point is a peninsula, bordered on three sides by Raleigh's primary drinking water supply, Falls Lake. The lake is a reservoir managed by the US Army Corps of Engineers. Park boundaries are marked by orange blazes on trees and with signs. All local, state and federal laws apply while inside the park. The park officially opened its gates to the public on January 1, 1992.

Please remember that no collection, removal or release of any animal, plant
or mineral material is allowed in the park.
 

Park Rules and Regulations

Safety and enjoyment go hand in hand at Blue Jay Point County Park. The following rules and regulations have been established to ensure a safe and pleasant visit:
  • Speed limit is 20 mph.
  • Pets must be kept on a leash – 6 feet max.
  • Open fires are not allowed.
  • Park only in designated areas. No parking on roadsides or grass.
  • The following are prohibited:
    • Alcoholic beverages
    • Firearms
    • Hunting
    • Overnight camping
    • Swimming
    • Collection or removal of any animal, plant or mineral material
    • Amplified music

Park Hours

Park Grounds: 8 a.m.–sunset, seven days a week.
Blue Jay Center Exhibit Hours: 8 a.m.–5 p.m., seven days a week.
Park Office Hours: Usually 8 a.m.–5 p.m., Mon.–Sat.

The park is closed Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and
New Year's Day.

Park Facilities and Activities

Blue Jay Center for Environmental Education
 
The Blue Jay Center houses an exhibit hall that explores many environmental and natural resource themes. Water is the focus of the first set of exhibits, offering a glimpse of the water cycle, the Neuse River basin, the Falls Lake watershed, and the city's reliance on Falls Lake for its supply of drinking water. The next series of exhibits offers visitors a look at many of the perils currently impacting the local environment, and highlights steps citizens can take toward its preservation. Finally, the Nature Discovery Room allows visitors an up-close look at the natural habitats found at Blue Jay Point, exploring the plants, animals and ecology of the fields, forests and streams of the park.
 
The Blue Jay Center is also the base for the park's environmental education programs. We have two indoor classrooms that are used for programs, workshops and environmental education resource professional meetings.
 
 
Gardens and Study Pond
 
This area, located next to the Blue Jay Center for Environmental Education, gives visitors ideas for their own backyard wildlife habitat and native plantings. The gardens and pond are also important staging areas for many of our environmental education programs.
 

 

Overnight Lodge
 
Blue Jay Lodge.jpgBlue Jay Point's Overnight Lodge exists to turn environmental education into a prolonged experience. Our overnight facility is used exclusively for this purpose. For more information on the Lodge, its amenities, requirements and reservations, please read our information on the Overnight Lodge
 
 
 
 
Hiking and Walking Trails
 
Blue Jay Trail.jpgThere are five miles of trails within the park.  For a trail map, see pages 3–4 of Blue Jay Point's Park Brochure.  Remember: ALL dogs must remain on a 6-foot leash.
Walk our Azalea Loop Trail for an interpretive experience. At the trail head, pick up an Interpretive Guide for the seasonal Information that corresponds with numbered posts along the trail.
Hikers seeking extended trail opportunities will discover that Blue Jay's Section VI of the Falls Lake Trail connects with North Carolina's Falls Lake Trail, thus extending the hiking opportunities well beyond the boundaries of Blue Jay Point – NC Falls Lake Trail Map, turn-by-turn description, and start-finish shortened description.
Mountain biking is not allowed on Blue Jay Point's trails. For mountain biking opportunities in the RTP area, please visit Triangle MTB 
 
 
Picnic Area
Blue_Jay_Picnic_Area.jpg
Blue Jay Point has several picnic areas with tables and grills. The tables are in shaded areas, not shelters. Use of picnic areas is on a first-come, first-served basis, with no reservations. If you are planning to bring a large group (75+ people) out to the park, please read our Big Group Trip Tips.
 

 

 

Playgrounds

Blue_Jay_Playground.jpgBlue Jay Point has a Tot Lot playground for 2–5-year-olds and a Kids Lot for 5–12-year-olds AND a Natural Play Area!  Picnic tables, restroom facilities, and a paved loop trail (great for strollers) are nearby. Don't forget to visit the Blue Jay Center for Environmental Education just over the hill!  Check out this video of our playgrounds!

 

 

 

Open Play Field

This large open area is ideal for flying kites, throwing Frisbees, and just relaxing in the sun. Remember: all dogs must remain on a 6-foot leash. If you are planning on bringing a large group (75+ people) out to the park, please read our Big Group Trip Tips.  Blue Jay Point does not offer organized sports. Please contact your local municipality's Parks and Recreation Department for information on organized sports.

 
Fishing Areas
 
Blue_Jay_Fishing_Area.jpgThe shores of Blue Jay Point provide informal bank fishing in Falls Lake. NOTE: All N.C. Inland Freshwater Fishing Regulations apply. Please be aware of the new fishing license requirement – all anglers ages 16 years and older using any type of bait or gear must possess a valid North Carolina fishing license.
 
 
 
Geocaching
 
Blue_Jay_Geocache.jpgThe hunt is on during this high-tech “treasure” hunting activity! The idea is to use GPS devices to find hidden containers within the park. This activity is self-guided by getting coordinates from Geocaching.com and bringing your own GPS unit. Those wishing to establish a new cache must receive approval prior to placing a cache. To obtain the approval you must complete and submit a Geocache Placement Request Form to the park office.
 

Other Links

US Army Corps of Engineers
Local Municipality Parks and Recreation: