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A Short History of Lake Barkley


Lake Barkley was impounded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in 1966.  Lake Barkley Dam impounds the Cumberland River near Grand Rivers, Kentucky, approximately 38 miles up stream from where the Cumberland  empties into the Ohio River. One mile above the dam is a canal connecting  Lake Barkley with Kentucky Lake, forming one of the greatest freshwater recreational complexes in the country. The lakes run parallel courses   for more than 50 miles with Land Between the Lakes recreational area  located between them. Lake Barkley is 134 miles long with a shoreline  measuring 1,004 miles. Kentucky Lake is 183 miles long with 2,380 miles of shoreline and 160,000 acres of water. The lake's level is fluctuated from summer to winter for flood control purposes.  Summer pool (359 ft. sea level) is normally reached by May 1.  The water level begins dropping gradually on July 1, and winter pool (354 ft.) is reached by Dec. 1. The spring rise starts April 1. The lake's water surface area varies accordingly from 57,920 acres at summer pool to 45,210 acres at winter pool. Both lakes are navigable waterways that connect to the Mississippi River and to the Tombigbee waterway. The Tombigbee goes from Lake Michigan  to the Gulf of Mexico.





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1564 Palisades Drive

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