Lake Chatuge’s (pronounced Sha Toog) scenic beauty is nearly unsurpassed in the Southern Appalachian Mountains, drawing tourists and seasonal residents from all over the country. The entire lake is approximately 7,200 acres, 3,700 of which are in Clay County, the remaining acres in Towns County, GA. “Chatuge” is a Cherokee word meaning “meeting of the waters” and was man-made by 2,000 skilled laborers in 1942.
Lake Chatuge has an abundance of scenic coves along its 133 miles of shoreline. Fishing, swimming, boating, and camping are just a few of the many activities to be enjoyed in and around the lake. Three public boat ramps are available, as Lake Chatuge is known for its outstanding fishing. Tournaments are held yearly with 32 species of fish for the catching, such as Small & Large Mouth Bass, Spotted Bass, White & Striped Bass, and Sunfish, to name a few.
Chatuge Dam, which formed Lake Chatuge, began construction in July of 1941 by the TVA. Spanning close to 3,000 feet across The Hiawassee River, its original purpose was for flood control and to bring affordable electrical power to the area. The Lake Chatuge Project brought badly needed jobs for local folks in the lingering post-depression years, which was a definite boost for the economy. The dam is made up of 21,900 cubic yards of concrete and is filled with over 360,000 cubic yards of earth. At its completion in 1942, the dam became an impressive 144 feet high, 2,850 feet long, and 980 feet wide at the base. The Weir, just north of the dam, offers picnic tables and a launch for canoes and tubes for an exciting journey on the Hiawassee River. Chatuge Dam also offers a leisurely walking trail made in mind for families with small children in strollers or for those needing an even surface under their feet. Take in outstanding views of Lake Chatuge and the surrounding mountains. The trail is open to walkers, hikers, bikers, runners, and all outdoor enthusiasts!
Clay County’s “Jewel of the Mountains”!