Size & Depth – 30,400 acres with a maximum depth of 140 feet. The lake extends 43.1 miles upstream from the Douglas Dam.
Water Source – An impoundment of the French Broad River completed in 1943. The Nolichucky and Pigeon rivers are the primary tributaries, and there are numerous small inlet creeks.
During rainy seasons, it is not uncommon for the lake to rise as much as 15 to 20 feet in a day or two, if heavy rains occur in the nearby Appalachians. Summer levels are usually relatively stable.
Water – Very fertile and green in color. Water clarity is greatest near the dam, while the upper sections of the lake are usually stained. In general, the lake stains easily following heavy rains due to the muddy bottom. Thermal stratification (thermocline) usually develops in the summer months. Dissolved oxygen becomes depleted below the thermocline during late summer (July and August), making fishing tough until cooler fall weather arrives.
Bottom – Mostly silt and clay with some areas of rock outcroppings and bluffs.
Shoreline – Only about 17% of the shoreline is developed; the remainder is controlled by the TVA. Rolling hills of farmland and residential areas surround the lake.
Cover – The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency has placed many fish attractors in the lake, mainly in the backs of hollows where they are marked by signs or buoys.