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Located at the foothills of the Smoky Mountains, visitors can find the gorgeous and activity-filled Douglas Lake. If you feel like enjoying some time out on the water when you visit the Smoky Mountains, whether it’s relaxing in a boat or splashing around, take a drive to Douglas Lake. Before you go, check out these 5 interesting facts about Douglas Lake:
1. BASSMASTER Top 100 Lake
Douglas Lake has been named a BASSMASTER Top 100 Lake! Bassmaster Magazine is known as the “Bible of today’s bass fishermen,” so if you love to fish, this is the perfect lake for you to visit. Douglas Lake is ranked in the top 10 in the nation for largemouth bass and is also rated one of the top 5 crappie locations in the nation! In addition to largemouth bass, anglers can find white, striped and spotted bass in the lake. When you go fishing at Douglas Lake, a fishing license is required. Learn more about fishing in Douglas Lake and have your fishing poles ready when you visit!
2. Douglas Dam Was Built in Record Time
Douglas Lake was formed when the Tennessee Valley Authority built the Douglas Dam to provide hydroelectric power to help with downstream flood control of the Tennessee River Valley. Douglas Dam was built in record time for a facility of its size. Construction began on February 2, 1942 and lasted until February 19, 1943 at the height of World War II. The dam itself is a hydroelectric facility with 4 generating units that have a combined net dependable capacity of 111 megawatts. Douglas Lake extends 43 miles upriver from Douglas Dam through the foothills of the Smoky Mountains.
3. Flood Storage Reservoir
Douglas Lake, also known as Douglas Reservoir, is a flood storage reservoir. It helps with the overall water control in the Tennessee Valley. Its flood-storage capacity is 1,082,000 acre-feet. To prepare for the winter, TVA lowers the water level to make room for the runoff from winter storms. When there is a storm, TVA holds the water back by reducing releases from the dam, and when the rain stops, TVA gradually lets the water out to prepare for the next storm. In the summer when there is less risk of floods, TVA keeps lake levels higher to support recreation. In a year with normal rainfall, Douglas Lake’s water level varies about 44 feet from summer to winter.
4. More Than 1.7 Million Visitors Each Year
Douglas Lake has become a popular recreational site where visitors can enjoy picnicking, camping, fishing and more! The lake attracts more than 1.7 million visitors each year, and it’s not hard to understand why. Besides being a top spot for fishing, it also has exceptional opportunities for boating. Whether you bring your own boat or rent one at the lake, you’ll love taking it out on the water and relaxing! For some fun on the lake, visitors can rent kayaks, paddle boats and more. You’re also allowed to go for a swim anywhere in the lake! For the perfect end to a day at Douglas Lake, spend the night underneath the stars. Douglas Lake Campground has 100 sites with electric and water hookups. Read our blog, “Top 6 Things to Do When You Visit Douglas Lake,” to find out more exciting activities at the lake.
5. Just a Few Miles from Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg
When you visit Douglas Lake, you’ll be surrounded by mountains and gorgeous nature scenes. But just a few miles away, you’ll find all the excitement of Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg! Popular area attractions are a short drive away from the lake, so if you want to explore a museum, visit thrilling attractions or browse unique shops, you won’t have far to go. Between all the things to do in Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg and the amazing experience you’ll have at Douglas Lake, you’re guaranteed to have an unforgettable vacation.
Find out more interesting facts about Douglas Lake and start planning your trip to the Smoky Mountains today!