Lake Johnson Park

Last Modified: February 27, 2014
Greenway Trail
Greenway Trail
Winter Wonderland at Lake Johnson
Winter Wonderland at Lake Johnson

Park Features | Map

Lake Johnson Park is composed of a 150+ acre lake and 300+ acres of land surrounding the lake. The lake/park offers boating, picnic shelters, concessions, facility rentals, greenway trails, and a vast array of classes, special events and recreational opportunities for the entire family.

Lake Johnson has 3.5 miles of paved greenway trails and 1.9 miles of unpaved trails.

For more information contact:
Lake Johnson Park
4601 Avent Ferry Road
Raleigh, NC 27606 (Get Directions)
Phone: 919-233-2121
Fax: 919-233-2127


Biking is prohibited on unpaved trails.

Park Activities

Park Programs

Winter-Spring Programs 2014

Summer Programs 2014

Boating at Lake Johnson

Personal Boat Launches


  • City Resident - $4 daily
  • Non Resident - $6 daily
  • Senior*/Veteran - $2 daily
    * Aged 62 or better

Boat Launches

Lake Johnson allows non-trailer, electric motorized boats to be launched. Boats may be launched sunrise to sunset, 7 days a week, year-round, unless the park or lake is closed. All boats must be off the water 15 minutes prior to sunset. They may only be launched at the designated launching site.

Boat Rentals & Fees (You must be at least 16 years old to rent a boat):

  • Jon Boats – no motor (available year round): $4/hour, $20/day
  • Jon Boats – with motor (available year round): $10/hour, $50/day
  • Canoes (available April through October): $5/hour
  • Kayaks (single & double - available April through October): $5/hour
  • Pedal Boats (available year round): $6/half hour
  • Sunfish Sailboats (available April through October): $10/hour (must be 18 or older)

Fishing at Lake Johnson

There are many opportunities for fishing at Lake Johnson. We only ask that you follow a few guidelines:

  • Bank fishing is prohibited
  • Fishing is permitted from our boardwalk, rental boats, or personal boats
  • A current NC fishing license is required to fish at Lake Johnson

Bait for Sale (seasonal usually March - October)

Live bait can be purchased from the onsite bait vending machine located on the main deck of the Lake Johnson Waterfront Center

Tackle Loaner Program

Whether you are 8 or 88 years young, you can borrow a rod and reel from us for free. Some of our sites host this program. Please check with the site to see what equipment is available.

Boat Rentals and Weather Concerns


Once the lake water temperature drops below 65 degrees, the renting of beach boats (kayaks, canoes and sunfish sailboats) is suspended. This typically occurs in late October to as late as the second half of April. The lake temperature must reach or exceed 65 degrees in order for beach boat rentals to resume each Spring.

The renting of dock boats (jon and paddle boats) is regulated by the "100 Rule". These procedures involve the measuring of both the air and water temperatures on a daily basis. If the measurement of both yields a combined total of less than 100 degrees, then boat rentals are not allowed. If the combined temperatures of both total more than 100 degrees, then boat rentals are allowed.

These temperature rules are designed to offset the possibility of hypothermia in the event of capsizing.


Wind speed also dictates whether or not boat rentals are permitted. It is always best to call ahead to see what conditions are like at the lake when planning your outing.

Please call ahead to determine any weather conditions for the day.

Hours of Operation

Lake Johnson Park is open daily, dawn to dusk.
Closed on Mondays from October - March.
Classes, programs, and special events may lengthen hours.

Closed for the following holidays: New Year's, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day

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