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Camping

TVA campgrounds are open for the 2021 season. Learn more.

TVA recreation areas, trails and undeveloped lands are open with the exception of the following, which are closed for maintenance and improvements:

  • Melton Hill Dam Reservation – portion of the left bank tailwater parking lot

Visitor centers at dams remain closed. Restrooms are open with the exception of the following, which are closed for maintenance and improvements:

  • Raccoon Mountain – restroom at bottom of mountain, close to plant

Several public land gates and access roads will be closed to motorized vehicles at the following reservoirs during low winter water levels to reduce damage to roadbeds: Boone, Cherokee, Douglas, Hiwassee, Kentucky, Melton Hill, Norris, Nottely and Watts Bar. Please do not block any closed access gates as they may be needed in case of an emergency. All public dispersed sites will remain open to foot traffic at all times.

Visitors are requested to follow public health guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Executive Order 13991 while enjoying public lands.

If you want to be surrounded by some of the most beautiful scenery in the Southeastern United States, plan a stay with TVA. TVA offers hundreds of campsites among its six dam reservoir campgrounds, available from March 15 to November 15.

All six campgrounds are now managed by Recreation Resource Management (RRM) under a concessionaire agreement with TVA. This has allowed an expansion of services that includes new campground stores, wireless access, an online reservation system and more.

Here’s a sampling of what you’ll find at the campgrounds to help you make memories that will last forever:

  • Cherokee Dam Campground near Jefferson City, Tenn.: With a picnic pavilion, basketball court and children’s playground, this is a terrific meeting place for a family reunion.
  • Douglas Dam Headwater Campground and Tailwater Campground near Sevierville, Tenn.: At the Headwater Campground, multiple boat ramps offer easy access to some of the Valley’s best bass fishing. The Tailwater Campground offers easy access to the Great Smoky Mountains.
  • Melton Hill Campground near Lenoir City, Tenn.: High-tech energy efficiency facilities meet a beautiful natural setting at this TVA demonstration property.  Learn more about energy efficiency at Melton Hill.
  • Pickwick Dam Campground near Savannah, Tenn.: Pickwick Reservoir has excellent sport-fishing areas, including the Wilson Dam tailwater at the upper end of the reservoir, noted for record-size smallmouth bass and catfish. Pickwick is also popular for boating and water skiing. Learn more about Pickwick Landing.
  • Watauga Campground near Elizabethton, Tenn.: The Appalachian Trail intersects with trails here, making for some truly world-class hiking.

Fees, Reservations and Other Information

The length of stay is limited to 21 days during the high season (May 1 to Sept 30) and 30 days in the off-season (Oct 1 to April 30, excluding closure dates). RRM offers seasonal sites for a monthly rate at a portion of the campsites at Cherokee and Pickwick. Seasonal sites allow campers to stay up to the full season (two month minimum). See the rate sheets for those two campgrounds to see which campsites are open to seasonal renting.

Other information—including opening and closing dates, rates, rules and reservation details—can be found on Recreation Resource Management’s website: camprrm.com.

Campground Rules

Learn about what’s okay and what’s prohibited before you go to ensure you have a blissful, happy experience camping in the great outdoors. Everyone stays well and plays well when they follow some basic rules for keeping the peace on TVA’s recreation areas and campgrounds.

Campground rules and regulations

Rules for TVA day-use areas and picnic pavilions

Want to Rough It?

You can camp in the wild—sans facilities—on undeveloped TVA public lands. Learn more about recreational opportunities on these lands.