Watauga County

Watauga County

Last updated March 2020

45,733 Total Voters

Republican 29.38% Democrat 26.45% Libertarian 1.07% Unaffiliated 43.1%
White 90.18% Black 2.22% Other 7.6%

Watauga County () is a county located in the U.S. state of North Carolina. As of the 2010 census, the population was 51,079. Its county seat and largest town is Boone.

Watauga County comprises the Boone, NC Micropolitan Statistical Area.


As with most of North Carolina's High Country, the climate of Watauga County is that of a Humid continental climate characterized by considerably cooler and more drastic weather than other parts of the state. Dramatic and unexpected changes in the weather are not uncommon in the county, particularly when it comes to precipitation. This is partly due to the elevation of the county, and partly due to orographic lifting, which causes precipitation to fall more readily in Watauga County than in lowland areas to the east. Summers can be very warm with temperatures commonly in the 80s and on a rare occasion in the 90s. Snow usually starts in November, and there can be snow falls in April, although this is not usual. Windy conditions tend to be amplified across the county due to the rugged terrain and high elevation. Many people have noted that the winters of Watauga County tend to resemble those of the northern United States instead of the South.

Because of the cold weather in Watauga County, the area is home to several ski resorts. Among them is Appalachian Ski Mountain.==History==The county was formed in 1849 from parts of Ashe, Caldwell, Wilkes, and Yancey counties. It was named for the Watauga River, whose name is said to be a Native American word, the translations that range from among them, beautiful water, whispering waters, village of many springs, and river of islands.

In 1861 part of Watauga County was combined with parts of Burke, Caldwell, McDowell, and Yancey counties to form Mitchell County. In 1911, the county was reduced to roughly its current size when portions of it were combined with parts of Caldwell and Mitchell counties to form Avery County.

Watauga County on Wikipedia »

Unemployment 8.11%

Voter Registration Thousands

In the General Assembly

  • State House
  • Jonathan Jordan (NC-93)
  • State Senate
  • Dan Soucek (NC-45)

Election Results