What we like: Lake Michael offers many of the same things as Lake Crabtree but on a slightly smaller scale. However, it is less crowded and boat rentals are cheaper than Lake Crabtree. Lake Michael is only about 30 minutes from SW Durham and is a nice change of pace. We rented a paddle boat and could put our 2 year old son in between us so he could steer, which he loved. The price is right too, costing us just $2 to rent a paddle boat (as opposed to $5 at Lake Crabtree). The park has two small shaded playgrounds for toddlers, as well as two fishing piers and nice shaded walking trails. We did not try the pontoon boat rides, though they looked like fun.
What we would change: The lake is a pretty good size lake, but you are only allowed in a limited area with the paddle boats. It would be nice to explore the entire lake with the paddle boats.
Website and other important information:
7300 Lebanon Road
Mebane, NC 27302
Phone: (919) 563-4573
The park is open from mid-March until the end of October. March hours are Monday - Saturday (closed Tuesday and Wednesday) from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. (or dark), and Sunday 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. (or dark). The hours of operation between April through the end of October are Monday - Saturday (closed Tuesday and Wednesday) from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. (or dark) and Sunday 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. (or dark).
Fees for various activities:
- Rental of a john boat: $4.00
- Launching your own boat: $4.00
- Fishing (all day): $2.00
- Pontoon boat rides: $1.00 per person
- Paddle boats: $1.00 per person (1 hour limit)
- Shelter fees: $10.00 (4 hour limit)
Paddle boats on Lake Michael
One of two shaded toddler playgrounds