The Concern Over Lake Levels

By: Jim Freeman
By: Jim Freeman

Knoxville (WVLT) Lake levels are always a concern this Memorial Day weekend.

Dale Hollow is actually above full pool. A couple of campgrounds are underwater.

Douglas Lake, Lake Cumberland and Cherokee are all below full pool.

While Fort Loudon, Watts Bar, Melton Hill and Norris are all right at full stage.

Wendall Johnson says, "When its at full stage, its just the appearance of the lake is better. You don't see the muddy shores also you don't have to worry so much about underwater obstacles."

Johnson boats out of the Lighthouse Marina at Norris Dam and likes the way TVA manages the Norris Lake levels.

"They've come up with a pretty good program to bring the lake level up earlier and hold it up longer."

Wendell says he's shopped around and loves the looks of Norris.

"We've visited all local lakes and to us again this has the best scenery.
It's a very deep lake so the water is very clear as you can see."

And its just minutes from Johnson's home in Halls.

"And just convenient for us from where we live. We mostly come up for pleasure and relaxation."

But he says if you're looking for fishing, a full pool lake may not be best.

"The fishing is average on Norris but because its so deep you don't have a lot of vegetation."

So even though Douglas is on the low side it has lots of upside when it comes to dragging the line.

"For example on Douglas Lake its a shallow lake, its sort of stained, its a little darker but you have a lot more vegetation so the fishing is better on that lake."

And what has Wendell noticed most in his almost 20 years boating on Norris besides more crowds, more speed, more size.

"We'll actually what we've noticed mostly, a good thing is that the water quality has actually improved over the years."

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