Master Plan

Friends of Lower Haw River State Natural Area Awarded Grant for Lower Haw Trails Master Plan


Click here for a map produced as part of the Master Plan effort.


July 2017


We have been awarded a grant from Triangle Community Foundation to develop a Lower Haw Trails Master Plan.  Although informal use by hikers and paddlers has occurred for years, this state natural area is considered undeveloped by State Parks since there are no authorized land and paddle trails. 


The grant will be used to develop a trails master plan over the next year, providing a structured process for planning future sustainable development of official hiking and paddle trails and amenities.  Permitted uses include hiking, paddling, fishing, and swimming.  


Activities that will not be permitted are camping, horseback riding, mountain biking, hunting, motorized vehicle riding, or motorized boating.  


This project has been made possible with a grant from Triangle Community Foundation’s Support for Places Awareness Program.  Our Friends chapter is working with Recreation Resources Service to develop the plan and is collaborating with NC State Parks and other stakeholders as well as the public for input.



Public Input Meeting: Lower Haw Trails Master Plan

Date:   Thursday, October 19, 2017
Time:   6:30 - 8:00 pm
Place:  Chatham County Agriculture & Conference Center, 1192 US Hwy 64 West Business, Pittsboro NC 27312

The public is invited to attend a meeting about developing a trails master plan for the Lower Haw River State Natural Area in Chatham County.  Come view maps and share your wants, needs, and concerns for future sustainable development of this state natural area. 

Lower Haw Trails Master Plan Update - October 21

Thanks to everyone who attended the public input meeting on Thursday evening, October 19!

See photos of the meeting on our Facebook page.

In addition to the public input session, we have been meeting with many other stakeholders to get their input.  We've heard from local government stakeholders including Chatham County, Pittsboro Parks, Swift Water Rescue Team, Sheriff's Office, and Emergency Operations.  We had a meeting for members of Friends of Lower Haw River State Natural Area on Tuesday evening.  Stakeholders who attended our State and Federal Agencies meeting included Triangle J Council of Governments, NC Wildlife Resources Commission, NC Geological Survey, and NC Natural Heritage Program.  Stakeholders who attended our Outdoor Interest Groups meeting included Haw River Assembly, Triangle Land Conservancy, UNC Campus Recreation Outdoor Education Program, and the Haw River Trail Coordinator.  Stakeholders who attended our Business Community meeting included Haw River Canoe & Kayak, Great Outdoor Provision Company, and Chatham County Convention & Visitors Bureau. We also met with Chatham Park.

We have gotten a lot of helpful information and appreciate the input received from all of these stakeholders and the general public.  We will begin compiling all of this information and our consultants, Recreation Resources Service, will begin drafting a report and concept designs for a final round of reviews in early spring.  The final report and concept maps will be completed by June 2018.  Keep checking back for periodic news updates.

If you missed the public input meeting on Thursday, it is not too late to share your wants, needs, and concerns by using this PDF Comment Sheet and sending to Recreation Resources Service either via email or postal mail. 

Lower-Haw-Master-Plan-Comment-2017-10.pdf