TVA created Douglas Lake on the French Broad River in 1941 for flood control and power generation. Douglas Lake is located among the rolling uplands of the Great Valley of east Tennessee. Set against the backdrop of the lush, green Smoky Mountain foothills, Douglas attracts two million recreation visitors a year. Picnicking, camping, boating, and fishing are all popular activities at the reservoir. Douglas Dam is on the French Broad River in east Tennessee. The reservoir extends 43 miles upriver from the dam through the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains. Douglas and other TVA reservoirs built during World War II made a historic contribution, providing hydropower to drive the war effort. The reservoir remains an integral unit in the overall water control system in the Tennessee Valley. Work on Douglas Dam began in February 1942 and was completed on a crash schedule in just 12 months and 17 days. The construction of Douglas set a world record for projects of equivalent size. The water level in Douglas Reservoir varies about 41 feet in a normal year.
Douglas has a flood‐storage capacity of 1,081,880 acre‐feet. Under normal conditions, Douglas stores spring rainwater for release during the dry summer and fall months to maintain adequate depth for navigation on the Tennessee River and to generate electricity. Water levels begin dropping in late summer to provide space for the next spring’s rains. Birdwatchers enjoy the fall migration of shore birds, wading birds, and other waterfowl that flock to Douglas from late July to early October. The birds rest and feed in the muddy shoreline and areas of shallow water exposed as the level of the reservoir is lowered to prevent spring flooding downstream.
Douglas Dam Tailwater Campground
This is a self‐service campground 423‐585‐2120). 62 campsites with water and electric hookup and two handicapped accessible sites. Rest rooms with heated showers and flush toilets, dump station, children’s play equipment, picnic tables and grills, group pavilion available by reservation, boat ramp, river fishing with fishing pier, bait and tackle shop, wildlife viewing area, bird‐watching 829 Riverview Way Sevierville, TN 37876 Near Sevierville and Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg, Tenn. From Interstate 40 take exit 407. Go South on Hwy. 66, then 3.5 miles east on Hwy. 139, then 0.5 miles south on Hwy. 338 to campground.
Advanced reservations for the pavilion can be made by calling the toll‐free number, 866‐494‐7186.
TVA created Cherokee Lake on the Holston River in 1941 for flood control and power generation.
Cherokee Lake is 54 miles long with a shoreline of nearly 400 miles and a surface area at summer water level of 30,300 acres. It collects rainfall from a 3,428 square-mile watershed. TVA owns approximately 8,000 acres around Cherokee ake. Seventy-five percent of the shoreline is undeveloped. Portions of the lake are located in Jefferson, Hamblen, Grainger, and Hawkins Counties in East Tennessee. Nearby communities include Jefferson City, Morristown, and Rogersville. Because Cherokee Lake was constructed as a critical part of the integrated regional flood protection system, its water levels vary widely between summer and winter. The lake’s normal summer water level is elevation 1071 and at full pool is 1073. Its minimum winter water level is elevation 1020. The lake usually reaches its summer elevation by June 1. The fall drawdown to make room for winter rains begins August 1. TVA maintains two recreation areas on Cherokee Lake: Cherokee Dam Reservation and May Springs Recreation Area. There are a dozen more public and commercial docks and campgrounds around the lake. Favorite sportfish includes white bass, largemouth and smallmouth bass, crappie, walleye, striped bass, and bluegill.
Cherokee’s water elevation, predicted elevation, and discharge schedule are available by calling TVA’s Automated Lake Information Line at 1-800-238-2264.
Cherokee Dam Campground
This is a self‐service campground (423‐585‐2120). 42 campsites with water and electric hookups, rest rooms with heated showers and flush toilets, dump station, children’s play equipment, picnic tables and grills, group pavilion available by reservation, swimming beach, boat ramps above dam and below dam, lake and river fishing, paved walking trail, bird watching.
Advanced reservations for the pavilion can be made by calling our toll‐free number, 866‐494‐7186. This pavilion has the following amenities: (1) electrical outlet with (2) plug ins, there is no lighting under the pavilion, (10) tables that will seat 50 people, (1) large charcoal grill, handicap accessible, restrooms near by (about 1100 feet), near the beach area & boat ramp, paved parking lot, water is furnished, and there is horseshoes and stakes, no other equipment for activities such as volleyball poles/net, etc. From Jefferson City, Tenn., go 1.5 miles west on US 11E, then follow signs 4.5 miles north to Cherokee Dam Reservation. 2805 North Highway 92, Jefferson City, TN 37760.
Information courtesy of Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce
Cherokee Dam Photo courtesy of David Hardin
Douglas Dan Photo courtesy of firstname.lastname@example.org
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