Davidson and the Greater Charlotte area provide the perfect mix of outdoor and city activities. Davidson College maintains outdoor facilities for recreational and educational use by students, faculty, staff and the general public.
Students, faculty, and staff enjoy exclusive access to Davidson College's Lake Campus located just a few minutes north of campus on beautiful Lake Norman. Lake Campus's 110 acres of waterfront property provides Davidson students with the unique opportunity to be involved in a variety of water activities. The Lake Campus is the home of Davidson's club sailing and crew teams. It also provides for numerous other recreational activities that benefit the school as a whole, such as Odyssey campouts, first-year orientation socials, yoga classes, department cookouts and more.
The Davidson College Ecological Preserve was established in the spring of 2001 to provide unique experiences in teaching and research for Davidson College students and faculty. The preserve, encompassing about 200 acres of forested land adjacent to the Davidson College campus, includes a variety of habitats and provides homes for many animals and plants. The preserve offers 5K and 8K trails for jogging, walking, biking, and bird watching, as well as large tracts of habitat for ecological studies.
The Davidson campus has been a National Arboretum since 1982 with more than 3,000 labeled trees and shrubs. Students and Physical Plant workers contribute to the ongoing responsibility of labeling and caring for the trees on campus. During the 80s, the legacy-planting program began, in which new trees were planted in dedication to various faculty, staff, and students.
Davidson Outdoors offers students, faculty, and staff a variety of outdoor activities and courses throughout the year. Davidson Outdoor trips are student run and include whitewater kayaking and canoeing, backpacking, rock and mountain climbing, and caving. Davidson Outdoors also offers weekly kayak rolling lessons, daily indoor climbing, bicycle repair tools, a community bicycle program, a group initiatives challenge course, and, for those who want to run their own trip, an equipment rental and trip planning resource center.
The Town of Davidson Parks and Recreation Department oversees a variety of community, neighborhood, greenway and natural parks areas. The Town encourages a walkable, bikeable and fit community. Mecklenburg County, the county home for Davidson and Greater Charlotte, maintains 210 public parks and facilities as well as 37 miles of greenways. Jetton Park and Ramsey Creek Park are close to the college and reside along Lake Norman.