Friday, August 15, 2014

Lake Hiawassee Dam


Blairsville, Georgia  (high 83, low 59)


Our plan for yesterday was to head up to Murphy, North Carolina and check out Lake Hiawassee Dam.  We’re going to rent a pontoon boat one of these days, and we’re trying to decide on which of the many lakes we want to explore by boat.

Nancy and Bill arrived Wednesday.  They were armed with the literature we gave them and were out exploring and looking for a place for a big hike on the Appalachian Trail.  They found just the right place, and are planning on spending the entire day hiking. 

Before we left, we puttered around the house for awhile, having our morning coffee and computer time, then off for a bike ride.   We hadn’t been on the bikes for a while and Dead Squirrel Hill beat me yesterday.  I just couldn’t get up that darn hill, but Al did!


We decided to have lunch at the beautiful Butternut Creek Golf Club.  They have a nice cafe with a beautiful outside dining area which overlooks the golf course.  It was a perfect day weather-wise with temps in the low 70’s at lunch time.

What a view.

Butternut Creek Golf Course, Blairsville, GA

There are a lot of dams and man made lakes in this part of the south, so there are no shortage of lakes.

Lake Hiawassee is in a more remote setting than most of the lakes we’ve been.  We wound around the mountains for quite awhile before we got to the lake.

The scenery was pretty.  How about this house built on the side of a cliff overlooking the lake?

Lake Hiawasee, Murphy, North Carolina

We started at the marina so that we could check out the boats.

The water really was that color.

Lake Hiawasee, Murphy, North Carolina

That is the marina you see in the background.  There are a bunch of boat slips.  I was curious if the boats stayed all winter and if the lake froze or not. 


I was told this part of the lake is deeper and doesn’t freeze, so most of the boats stay in the water all winter.  They have to be winterized.  That seemed funny to me because we’ve never had to winterize a boat.  :)  We actually had to “summerize” ours that we left in the Keys.

There are depths of up to 300 feet in this lake.  Wow.  This is all due to flooding when the dam was built by the Tennessee Valley Authority.   I’m not sure I like all these dams, but they certainly make for some beautiful lakes and recreational areas.

As we walked along the dock, we were amazed at how green the water was in the sun.


It was a pretty green and the water was pretty clear.


The lady at the marina said it was because of the red clay bottom.

There were some fish hanging out waiting to be fed, so she fed them early so that we could watch.

Lake Hiawasee, Murphy, North Carolina

After we explored the marina and discovered that this lake had very little boat traffic, we decided this might be a great place to rent the pontoon boat.


We drove over to the dam and checked out the beautiful lake views.

Lake Hiawasee, Murphy, North Carolina

The day couldn’t have been any more beautiful.

Lake Hiawasee, Murphy, North Carolina


There was a map showing the many states and dams involved in the TVA project.

Lake Hiawasee, Murphy, North Carolina

What a massive undertaking this was.  Did they have a master plan for the entire multi-state project, or did they just do a little at a time?  Where would you start?  What about all the people that were displaced?  What about all the animals that lost not only their homes, but probably their lives?


This  next photo was taken from the top of the dam.


Looking down, riverside.

Lake Hiawasee, Murphy, North Carolina

It was a looong way down. 


Staircase for the workers to go down into the dam.


The view lakeside was incredible.


I would love to take a guided tour of one of these dams so that someone could explain how they work. 

I imagine we’ll be a get an interesting view of the dam from the water when we rent the boat.


Lake Hiawasee, Murphy, North Carolina


We got home, visited a little with Nancy and Bill, then they went out for a walk and we went for a golf cart ride.  We offered them a ride, but Nancy had to get in her steps for the day.   She’s way more disciplined than we are!

We can’t wait to hear about their hike on Blood Mountain.

I think we’re going to do a less ambitious hike today ourselves.

Stay tuned.


  1. It is beautiful country with such a beautiful lake but it wasn't always like that. In the early days of settlers there were droughts and flash floods that were unpredictable. The creation of dams not only as a source of generating electricity but somewhat controlling Mother Nature has given us the world we have today. Unfortunately people and animals lives had to be disrupted in order to accomplish it.
    Is there a possible second boat in your future for exploring your northern home or maybe you will start hauling the other boat with you?
    Be Safe and Enjoy!

    It's about time.

  2. Another nice day in sunny Georgia, you certainly made the most of it. Dams are such fascinating structures, I'd love to watch one being built.

    Have a great time with Nancy and Bill, they are special folks and so much fun to be with. :c)

  3. Georgia is such a pretty state. You guys have lots to look at from there!

  4. You sure did have a beautiful day for your trip. The lake looks lovely but I'm for sure not a lover of dams. Let the rivers be free is my feeling. Say Hi to Bill and Nancy for us. We love to go hiking and biking with them.

  5. So beautiful! I've pinned this to make sure we visit!


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