What can I say, but dam!
The Fontana Dam was right around the corner from Fontana Village so naturally we had to check it. As you leave Fontana Village you stay to the left towards Fontana Marina and then stay left again. (go past the marina)
It took no time at all to get the dam and as soon as we saw the dam it was totally worth the less than 10 minute drive through the windy roads.
We stopped at the first look out just prior to the dam and took in the scenery. The water was way down, but we later learned the water fluctuates about 50 feet, crazy.
Riley wasn’t ready to get back in the car so he actually ran (on the sidewalk) for about a half mile down to the actual dam.
It was pretty awesome
When we got to the dam is was a very nice set up complete with clean bathrooms, gift shop and small visitor center to answer all of your questions. To top it of (no pun intended) there was a look out on top of the visitor center to get another perspective.
Fontana Dam is the highest dam east of the Rocky Mountains, and is on the Little Tennessee River in western North Carolina. The dam was built and managed by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA for short).
Interesting facts about Fontana Dam:
- Construction of Fontana Dam began in 1942 and was completed in 1944.
- Fontana Dam is a hydroelectric facility. It has three generating units with a net dependable capacity of 304 megawatts. Net dependable capacity is the amount of power a dam can produce on an average day, minus the electricity used by the dam itself.
- The dam is 480 feet high and stretches 2,365 feet across the Little Tennessee River.
- Fontana Reservoir provides 238 miles of shoreline and 10,230 acres of water surface for recreation activities.
- In a year with normal rainfall, the water level in Fontana Reservoir varies about 56 feet from summer to winter to provide seasonal flood storage.
- Fontana has a flood-storage capacity of 514,000 acre-feet.
- Find Fontana Dam off Hwy. 28 in Fontana, N.C.
Fontana Dam was impressive and the nicest dam setup I’ve seen. If you are visiting Bryson City or Cherokee it’s not far at all. Worth the visit especially if you want to partake in the Tail of the Dragon.
Our Life Goal is to get out and Live!