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Lumber River in North Carolina - Weekend Trip Report

Trip Overview

We put in at the boat ramp at Boardman on US Hwy 74 on Saturday morning on the Lumber River setting out for an overnighter. Several paddlers just wanted to go on a day trip and took out at Lumber River State Park which was 8.4 miles from the put in. The put in is easy at the boat ramp and the river is anywhere from 50 ft to 150 ft wide. This is a black water river and very scenic. A few trees present challenges as far as working your way through them but no portages unless water is very low. There is a USGS gauging station at Boardman and minimum paddle depth on this gauge should be about 2 1/2 ft.

The Lumber River State Park has canoe in camp sites and they can be contacted at 910-628-9844, or you can paddle several miles past the park and camp on any part of land that is not posted. The park owns most of the land and primitive camping is available. The take out at Fair Bluff, NC is 11.3 miles and it is at a boat ramp on river left before bridge. There is an outfitter at the take out, River Bend Outfitters which can provide rentals, shuttles or equipment. They can be contacted at 910-649-5998. In the summer or when water is low there are many beautiful white sandbars to camp on. The Lumber River is designated a wild and scenic river.


Motels and restaurants located in Lumberton, NC.


No fees or permits for primitive camping but fees for camping at the Lumber River Park


The put in at Boardman on US Hwy 74 is located approximately 15 miles East of Interstate 95 at exit 14. Boat ramp in on the right before you get to bridge over Lumber River. The take out is at Fair Bluff, NC


Paddling Eastern North Carolina by Paul Ferguson, and DeLorme North Carolina Atlas and Gazetteer.

  • Skill Level: Beginner
  • Water Type: River/Creek (Up to Class II)
  • Group Rates: No

Locations on this Trip