Lake Oconee

"There is never a time you can’t just jump in your boat and go out on the lake!"

Lake Oconee is a 19,050-acre Georgia Power Company reservoir controlled by Wallace Dan and used to generate hydroelectric power. The water level on Lake Oconee stays relatively stable, Wallace Dam, which holds back the lake, can pump water from downstream and keep lake levels up in dry periods, unlike other lakes in Georgia where water levels can plummet. Offering 376 miles of shoreline, it is at least 20 miles from the Northern most flooded area South to Wallace Dam. Built as a recreational lake, it has been the core of development in this area of the state since it was flooded in 1980. Lake Oconee is not used for flood or drought control.

Three counties in Northeast Georgia were directly affected by the construction of the lake, and the impact on the area has been dramatic. Greene, Putnam and Morgan Counties serve as boundaries of Lake Oconee surrounding it with rich Georgian history and many superb examples of antebellum architecture. Each county has experienced an influx of residents and business since the lake was built. Best known as a scenic resort area tucked away in one of the most beautiful areas of the state, Lake Oconee is home to more than 100 subdivisions and developments, including several large, prestigious, gated communities that are anchored by well-regarded golf courses. An influx of buyers are purchasing or building primary residences, second and retirement homes on lots that front on water or fairways. Homes range from one-bedroom condos to enormous estates. The eight world class golf courses read like a who’s who of prominent course designers and players, including Jack Nicklaus, Tom Fazio, Rees Jones, Bill Coore, Ben Crenshaw, Tom Weiskopf, Jay Morrish and Jim Engh.

Formed by the Oconee and Apalachee Rivers plus several major creeks, Lake Oconee is environmentally safe, since neither of the rivers passes through an industrial-based city. Georgia Power does its part to keep the lake safe and clean by maintaining an environmental strip, surrounding the entire lake on which no building of any kind is allowed and no boats larger than 30 feet with heads or cabins are allowed on its waters.

Have fun on the water! Lake Oconee is considered the best fishing lake in the Southeast, estimated at having more than 433 pounds of fish per acre, nearly double of what is normally found in other Middle Georgia Lakes. Georgia Power operates three 85-acre recreational areas in Greene and Putnam Counties: Parks Ferry, Old Salem and Lawrence Shoals. Each offers boat ramps and camping sites, many with full hook-ups. There is also a 1450-acre wildlife preserve and 55 acre fish plot. The constant water levels along its shoreline make boating, waterskiing, fishing and kayaking popular activities.

With easy access to Atlanta, Athens and Augusta, Lake Oconee is in the perfect location for access to the very best amenities the state has to offer. Only one hour from Atlanta, one hour and fifteen minutes from Augusta and just forty five minutes from Athens, Lake Oconee today is not only accessible by car with an upgraded airport in Greene county and many of the gated communities offering a helicopter pads.