ABCNews.com features DuPont State Forest and its prominence in “The Hunger Games” in an article on movie-inspired tours. As “Life imitates art,” vacations imitate the movies. Obviously not down to every plot detail – but when choosing a theme, travelers look to the movies. Of the movie locations, the article says the rural western parts of the state, including DuPont State Forest, where the gruesome Games took place, expected and received a huge tourism boost following the first Hunger Games film.
Record-breaking crowds continue at DuPont Forest
Last year, roughly 250,000 people visited DuPont State Forest in Henderson and Transylvania counties. Since then, publicity surrounding its mountain biking trails, waterfalls and role in the filming of the popular “Hunger Games” movie has drawn thousands more, already topping an all-time high of 327,000 so far this year. Initial results of a 2012 exit poll conducted by DuPont rangers showed half of roughly 900 visitors surveyed were from North Carolina, 21 percent from South Carolina, 9 percent from Florida and 5 percent from Georgia, according to Forest Supervisor David Brown. But Brown was surprised to find that about 2 percent of DuPont visitors were from California, while other groups came from as far away as China, Great Britain and the Ukraine. “I think that’s one reason the visitation continues to go up,” Brown said. “There’s still a lot of people discovering DuPont, and it has become a major destination for North Carolina.” About 40 percent of visitors polled came to hike the forest’s 82 miles of hiking trails and multi-use roads, while 26 percent came to view some of its six major waterfalls. Roughly 19 percent came to mountain bike, an increasing draw since DuPont was featured in January on the cover of Bike magazine.