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Ocoee Recreational Attractions

picture of kayakerThe main attraction of the Ocoee River Gorge is the whitewater course below Ocoee Dam No. 3, which drew thousands to the Olympic competitions in 1996. But if you’re not a world-class kayaker (and even if you are), there are plenty of other things to see and do on the Ocoee.

Rafting Trips

The four-and-a-half-mile Ocoee whitewater rafting area, located below Ocoee Dam No. 2, attracts more than 200,000 visitors each year. A number of commercial outfitters organize and supply rafting trips down the floatway.

Copper Basin Restoration

Until recently much of the Copper Basin, a few miles upstream from Ocoee Dam No. 3, was barren and bleak, the effect of years of copper mining and smelting. The practice of burning the ore to get rid of sulfur produced acid rain, which denuded an area of more than 50 square miles. Astronauts could once see the red scar on the earth from outer space. Today, thanks to restoration efforts by TVA and other organizations, the Copper Basin’s recovery is almost complete and the area has been returned to its former beauty.

Recreation Areas

The U.S. Forest Service manages a number of recreation areas in the Ocoee River region. Swimming, picnicking, and camping facilities are available, as well as boat launching ramps.

Parksville Lake

Parksville Lake, also known as Lake Ocoee, is located behind Ocoee Dam No. 1 and is easily accessible from Interstate 75. Lake levels fluctuate very little during the year, and the lake offers scenic vistas of Cherokee National Forest. Visitors can stay at the Forest Service campgrounds or at a commercially operated inn on the lakeshore.


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The three Ocoee dams are located on the lower Ocoee River, east of Cleveland, Tennessee, in Cherokee National Forest.




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