Lake Barkley is a 134-miles-long reservoir located in Livingston, Lyon, and Trigg counties in Kentucky and in Stewart and Houston counties in Tennessee. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers impounded the lake from the Cumberland River near Grand Rivers, Kentucky, in 1966 upon the completion of Barkley Dam. The dam is located approximately 38 miles upstream from where the Cumberland enters the Ohio River.
One mile above the dam is a canal that connects Lake Barkley with Kentucky Lake, forming one of the greatest freshwater recreational complexes in the country. The Land Between The Lakes National Recreation Area runs between those two lakes for more than 50 miles. The canal contains a 400-foot bottom width, and a 1.75-mile length. It provides a navigable channel for both commercial and recreational craft moving between the two waterways.
President John F. Kennedy designated The Land Between The Lakes National Recreation Area as a national recreation area in 1963. The recreation area, which TVA originally managed, is now managed by the United States Forest Service.
Millions of visitors come to Lake Barkley each year to enjoy a variety of outdoor recreational opportunities such as boating, fishing, hiking, fishing, hunting, camping, and picnicking. In addition, vacationers can enjoy historic relics, a Civil War Monument, commercial marinas, public parks, and wildlife refuges that contain and abundance of wildlife, including bald eagles.
Search Lake Barkley Resources
Boaters will enjoy the numerous marinas and several access sites located along the lake's 58,000 acres. Most marinas offer full service including boat rentals, accommodations, supplies, fishing tackle, and restaurants. The warmth of summer brings water activities to an all-time high. Drag boat races, poker runs and open regattas are scheduled throughout the year. Boating, skiing, swimming and personal water crafts are a great source of recreation and entertainment in the summer months. Search the Lake Resource Guide for boating resources.
Lake Barkley State Resort Park provides a lake view from the private balconies of most of the 120 rooms and four suites. Check out more Land Between the Lakes lodging, including cozy cabins and campsites at the Lake Resource Guide..
The closest major city is Paducah KY and Nashville TN. Other nearby Tennessee cities; Camden, Dickson and Centerville. The lake is located in the Tennessee counties of Stewart and Houston.
Fun times at Lake Barkley
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