The Crystal Clear Waters of Lake Blue Ridge
One of Georgia's most picturesque mountain lakes is Lake Blue Ridge in Blue Ridge, GA with its cool crystal clear turquoise waters. The 3,290-acre lake operated by the TVA (Tennessee Valley Authority), offers four public boat ramps, a full-service marina, public swimming, campground, and picnic areas. What makes Lake Blue Ridge so beautiful is that 80% of the shoreline on Lake Blue Ridge is in the Chattahoochee National Forest, managed by the USDA Forest Service.
Blue Ridge Dam
The Blue Ridge reservoir is located on the Toccoa River in the Chattahoochee National Forest. Eleven miles below the dam with 65 miles of shoreline and 25% of which is developed, the Toccoa River flows northwestward into Tennessee where it becomes the Ocoee River. When water is released from the Blue Ridge Dam to generate electricity, the Toccoa River becomes a Class I-II float through the North Georgia mountains. Floating northward into Tennessee, the Toccoa River becomes the Ocoee River best known for exhilarating Class III-IV whitewater rafting and home to the 1996 Summer Olympics.
Besides providing power and recreational opportunities, Lake Blue Ridge also helps reduce flood damage. The lake was formed when the Blue Ridge Dam was constructed on the Toccoa River in 1930 by the Toccoa Electric Power Company. At the time it was built, the dam was the largest earthen dam in the Southeast. The TVA purchased the facility in 1939 for hydroelectric power production.
There’s a scenic overlook above the dam and a shaded picnic area near the powerhouse. The canoe and kayak launch site below the dam gives non-motorized boaters access to the Toccoa River.
Things To Do For A Fantastic Lake Blue Ridge Vacation
North Georgia's Lake Blue Ridge has water so clear and blue, you’ll want to jump right in! The refreshing turquoise waters will cool you off on the warmest of summer days in Blue Ridge.
The lake is only 3 miles from downtown Blue Ridge and 1.5 hours from Atlanta. There are plenty of boutiques, adventure outfitters, restaurants, and the always-popular Blue Ridge Scenic Railroad in Blue Ridge, so it's well worth a visit!
Boat ramps, swimming, a marina, picnic spaces, and water activity rentals are all available in the Lake Blue Ridge region.
We'll tell you everything you need to know about having a great time on Lake Blue Ridge and beyond!
Fishing in Lake Blue Ridge
The Toccoa River, which feeds into Lake Blue Ridge, is noted among anglers for its rainbow trout and brown trout. Blue Ridge, GA is well known as Georgia's Trout Capital. The best trout fishing is near the Blue Ridge Dam. If you would like guided tours with an expert angler, contact Andrew Bruce at Toccoa River Outfitters and he will give you the thrill of a lifetime on the Toccoa River or on a private stream where the trout are insanely trophy-sized!
Lake Blue Ridge is home to bass, bream, catfish, perch, and crappie, which make the area popular with anglers. It is the only lake south of the Great Lakes where Walleye are caught, and is also known for small-mouth bass fishing.
Serious fisherman seeking smallmouth bass or muskie go to Lake Blue Ridge since it is the only spot in the state where they may be found!
Lake Blue Ridge Loop
Lake Blue Ridge Loop is a 0.8-mile moderate hike near Blue Ridge, Georgia that offers animal viewing and is suitable for hikers of all abilities. Catch glimpses of Lake Blue Ridge along this wooded hike. Suitable for families with small children and those with limited mobility.
Pontoon Boat Rentals
Some of the most memorable experiences for most has been a day spent on a pontoon boat in Lake Blue Ridge. There are a couple of pontoon boat rentals. Our favorite is the great guys at Blue Ridge Boat Rentals. They run a seamless operation from rental, put-in at Lakewood Boat Ramp to take out. The Blue Ridge Marina also offers pontoon rentals.
Rent Kayas, Canoes, Paddleboards, and Paddleboats
Enjoy Lake Blue Ridge up close and personal in your own kayak, canoe, paddleboard or paddleboat. A truly relaxing and peaceful opportunity to take in all the sights, sounds, and cool refreshing waters of the beauty that is Blue Ridge, GA.
If you don't have your own kayak or SUP, our favorite outfitter, Andrew Bruce, will rent you what you need at Lake Blue Ridge Outfitters. He has kayaks, SUPs, and fishing kayaks, plus all the other accoutrements that you might need!
The Lake Blue Ridge Marina also rents kayaks, canoes, paddle boats, and paddleboards. At the marina you can launch all kinds of watercrafts here, as well as fill up on gas and get your boat serviced.
As large and beautiful Lake Blue Ridge is, there are only four public boat ramps with paid parking. Morganton Point Recreation Area, Lakewood Landing, Dry Branch Boat Launch off Aska Rd., Lake Blue Ridge Marina
Water Ski Jump
On the Ski Jump, you can put your skills to the test. Water skiing is available on most Georgia lakes, however on Lake Blue Ridge, the sport is taken seriously. Lake Blue Ridge is the only lake in Georgia with a public ski jump!
Swimming, Picnic, Campground Places
Lake Blue Ridge is a great place to go swimming. Morganton Point Recreation Area is well-known for its boat launch, but it's also a terrific spot for an old-fashioned beach day! It's important to note that this is a pebble beach, which means it's sandy but also has rocks, therefore water shoes are recommended. Parking, which is $5, can be limited on summer weekends and holidays.
Only open from April to October, you can enjoy the beach access to Lake Blue Ridge, picnic spots, and restroom facilities.
If you're wanting to spend the night, Morganton Point Campground and Recreation Area offers 40 campsites.
Parking at Lake Blue Ridge
You could easily spend an entire day here at the Lake Blue Ridge Marina, as it is more than just a launch point. Due to the limited amount of parking during the summer season, the Marina’s launching ramp is closed. However, the launching ramp is open during the off-season for $10 ($5 launching fee and $5 parking fee).
Where to Stay near Lake Blue Ridge
Above the banks of Lake Blue Ridge, there is a one-of-a-kind luxury cabin rental in Blue Ridge, GA that will transport your heart and soul to the peace and tranquility you seek in this crazy frantic world.
Blue Ridge Lake Sanctuary is a luxury vacation property that has been thoughtfully built as a retreat and haven to replenish and restore even the most jaded of spirits. Despite being less than 10 minutes from downtown Blue Ridge, you feel a million miles away from the rest of the world.
Check out our other luxury Blue Ridge vacation cabin rentals!
Where to Eat in Lake Blue Ridge
The Boat Dock Bar and Grill is located on the water's edge at the Lake Blue Ridge Marina and a fun spot to dine and enjoy the views.
It's worth noting that on busy weekends, there's generally a long wait, so set your watch to lake time, grab a drink, and take in the sights.
Other great Blue Ridge restaurants nearby!