Lower Winter Water Levels
At the request of many property owners, TVA is currently drawing down Watauga Reservoir to facilitate private shoreline cleanup and general maintenance on permitted docks.
The reservoir will be pulled down to approximately the 1,940-foot contour elevation (about 10 feet below normal winter pool) between now and mid-November 2013. This is similar to the draw down pattern last year when navigation safety buoys were installed.
TVA will hold the reservoir around the 1,940-foot contour elevation for approximately four weeks, from mid-November until mid-December, and then quickly begin recovery toward normal 2014 spring/summer levels as rain and runoff permit.
Watauga property owners, dock owners and marina owners are encouraged to take advantage of these low water conditions to complete shoreline cleanup or permitted stabilization efforts, or general dock maintenance on previously permitted structures. As a reminder, any new shoreline work or dock alterations require prior approval from TVA.
For questions regarding Section 26a permitting or other general maintenance questions, please contact Anthony Summitt, the area Program Manager, at 423-467-3801 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Additional information on TVA Section 26a permits may also be found at http://www.tva.gov/river/26apermits/ or by calling 1-800-882-5263.
Lake users, boaters and shoreline property owners are encouraged to prepare docks and boats for lower water levels, anticipate limited access at many locations and use caution while on the water.
As a reminder, it is illegal to remove, disturb, dig or damage cultural archaeological artifacts on federal property, including land normally covered by water. The public is asked to leave in place any cultural or archaeological items and to report anyone digging for artifacts by calling 1-855-548-2489.
At more than 1,900 feet above sea level, Watauga holds the distinction of being the highest reservoir in the Tennessee River system. The reservoir is managed for many uses, including flood damage reduction, power generation, water quality, and aquatic ecology.
Surrounded by the Cherokee National Forest and flanked by the Appalachian Mountains, Watauga Reservoir is one of the most scenic in the Tennessee River watershed. It offers access to the Appalachian Trail. Below Watauga Dam is a wildlife observation area where visitors have a chance to view unique species of waterfowl.
More information on Watauga Reservoir