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Cherokee Lake

General Information

Jefferson County

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 (423-58?-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.

Group Pavilion

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 nearby (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

Cherokee Lake Lakeway Area MLS Lots & Land