I know how hard it is to get young kids out of the house to go somewhere - even quick outings require you to pack enough snacks, diapers, and toys to make you think you’ll be gone for a week. And who wants to wrestle kids in and out of carseats just to find out that your destination isn’t kid-friendly? That’s why I’ve decided to visit Triangle area sites to see if they’re worth your trip. I won’t use a rating system but I’ll try to describe what you’ll see well enough for you to decide if your kids would find it interesting. I’ll also give you the heads up on bathrooms, stroller accessibility and any other SNAFUs I encounter.


Lake Crabtree County Park - Morrisville

Park website

         I wanted to see this Park because I heard about their rod and reel loaner program and my preschooler has been asking me if she could learn to fish. Never having caught a fish in my life, I'm not sure I'm the best to teach her. Still, with my inland fishing license that I bought at Dick's Sporting Goods, we set out on one of the most beautiful summer days we've had yet. When we got to the Park we soon learned that everyone who could set me up with the loaner program was at an off site training. The one worker who was there offered to let me borrow her personal rod but she didn't have any lures and me, being the well-prepared dad that I am, hadn't brought any food that could be used as bait. So even though my preschooler was disappointed because we couldn't fish, we decided to hang around and see what the Park had to offer.

       Fishing at Lake Crabtree is catch and release and only permitted in certain areas of the Park. The fishing pier is very accessible and the view is beautiful. You can also rent boats from the boathouse on the weekends.

from the fishing pier

        There are plenty of picnic shelters, picnic tables, and clean restroom facilities at the Park. There are two playgrounds - a large one in partial shade and a smaller one in almost complete shade. The restroom facility is very close to both of these playgrounds. Mountain bike and hiking trails run throughout the park and range in length from a quarter mile to six miles. Some of the trails are paved and great for stroller hikes. One mountain bike trail goes by the foundation of an old homestead left over from when the Park was all farmland.

the larger playground

        Down at the area called the floodplain - a large grassy meadow - there is a sand volleyball court, picnic tables, and a garden. When we were there a gentleman was flying very large kites where the grassland meets the water's edge. The floodplain also provides a great place to watch planes coming in and out of RDU.

the floodplain

       My kids had a great time playing on the playgrounds and enjoying the scenery. I enjoyed it too. Finding someplace that both my kids and I can enjoy is difficult and one of the main reasons I started this blog. Taking my kids to a playground is a no-brainer but it's nice to go somewhere that appeals to adults as well.

      Lake Crabtree is a Wake County park and, as I've noted before in other postings, Wake County has some of the best parks in the Triangle. Wake County has found a way to combine kid-friendly fun, educational opportunities, and scenic landscapes in many of its' parks. 

     Lake Crabtree is one of my favorite spots and I'll definitely return. Even besides the fishing, there are lots of other activities at the Park I'd like to try.

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