Boating & Watersports in the Smokies

Fontana Lake

Fontana Lake.

When one thinks of the Smoky Mountains, they probably aren't thinking of boating and water recreation. 

However, there's a beautiful lake along the southern border of the national park that deserves water enthusiasts' attention.

Fontana Lake offers a unique getaway to explore the Smokies by waterway.  Nestled between the Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the Nantahala National Forest, Fontana Lake offers 240 miles of shoreline - mostly undeveloped and perfect for any fisherman. 

Fontana Lake stretches 29 miles long and contains an 11,700-acre area.  The lake was created back in 1944 by the Tennessee Valley Authority, with the construction of Fontana Dam.  Today, Fontana Lake is deemed the "best kept secret in the mountains." 

The deep depths of Fontana Lake provide fishermen with a wide variety of fishing options.  Northern fish, such as walleye and muskie, have been caught here.  The most abundant fish is the smallmouth bass.

Fontana Lake Boat Launch Areas

  • Alarka Boat Dock
  • Almond Boat & RV Park
  • Cable Cove Boat Ramp
  • Flat Branch Boat Ramp
  • Fontana Dam
  • Fontana Village Marina
  • Lemmons Branch Boat Ramp
  • Lewellyn Branch Boat Ramp
  • Old 288 Boat Ramp

Douglas Lake

Located just north of Sevierville and just east of Highway 66, the French Broad River is dammed creating Douglas Lake.  Several marinas, resorts and launching ramps are available on the lake. Douglas Lake was created in the early 1940s. It is 60 miles in length and features 513 miles of shoreline.  The surface area of the lake is just over 44 square miles.