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Hartwell Lakeside Park

Swimming, boating, and water skiing are prime reasons to visit Hartwell Lakeside Park in northeast Georgia. Largemouth bass, hybrid bass, and striper are just some of the fish to be found in the sparkling waters of this 55,590-acre reservoir.

The Anderson Independent showed a photo taken at the site of the Hartwell Dam by a group of Russian specialists. Portman Shoals power plant is in the background. Click here for more info.


The lakeside park offers a range of camping options including paved RV sites, tent campsites, and single-room camper cabins. The Crescent Group Camp Park is one of the few USACE campgrounds that are positioned right on the “big water” near Hartwell Dam and many of the paved campsites offer breathtaking views at sunrise and sunset.

Three group camp loops within the campground can be rented for groups of people and are the ideal setting for family reunions, birthday parties, weddings, or any type of large gathering. Other amenities include restrooms/showers, a pay phone, a courtesy dock, and a boat ramp. The campground is open year-round. Swimming, boating, water skiing, and fishing are available on the 56,000-acre lake. Hiking/biking trails are also a feature of the facility.


Known as one of the Southeast’s premier professional bass tournament lakes, recreational and leisure boating, fishing, camping, swimming, and other outdoor activities lure visitors to Lake Hartwell every year. Located just north of the state line with South Carolina, Lake Hartwell is 56,000 acres in size and has 962 miles of shoreline. The Corps operates nine campgrounds, 15 major day-use areas, and numerous other lake-access areas around the lake.

Big Oaks Recreation Area, 1 mile past the dam on the GA side or 5 miles from downtown Hartwell, offers playgrounds right on the water, picnic areas with beautiful vistas of Lake Hartwell, restrooms, and a boat ramp. A small visitor’s center and facilities for the handicapped are available here, too. This lakeside park also features a swim beach and picnic shelters that are reservable. A must-see place!


With 962 miles of shoreline and 56,000 acres of water, Hartwell Lake has a lot to offer fishers. It’s a favorite bass fishing spot for both beginners and professionals, and its deep waters and diverse habitat make it ideal for catfish, bream, crappie, and hybrid stripers as well.

Largemouth bass fishers can find plenty of pre-spawn action in the winter and early spring. They target structures in 10 to 15 feet of water, such as submerged trees, bridge abutments, and roadbeds. Dropping shad-patterned crankbaits or curly tail grubs into these areas will produce solid results.

Fishing is allowed on the shore banks and off piers, but not in public boat ramps, courtesy docks, or private boat docks (unless you have the owner’s permission). A Georgia state fishing license or South Carolina fishing permit is required.


Whether you’re dressing to impress for dinner at a fancy restaurant or want to loosen up your belt and grab a beer and burger, there are plenty of dining options around Lake Hartwell. From waterfront restaurants to those accessible by boat, there’s something for everyone.

Portman Marina’s newest restaurant brings in locals and tourists for a dining experience that includes seafood, steak, and platters from the one-of-a-kind hearth room oven. With scenic views and online ordering, The Galley is sure to change the way you enjoy Lake Hartwell.

The owners of Hartwell Speedway have made it a priority to create a family-friendly environment at their 3/8 mile dirt oval. Kids have the opportunity to participate in power wheel and foot races and enjoy activities at the track.


Lake Hartwell, formed by damming the Savannah River and straddling the Georgia/South Carolina border, is one of the most popular Corps lakes in the country. Visitors come here for swimming, boating, and water skiing as well as to fish, camp, hike, and picnic.

The Big Oaks Recreation Area offers sandy beaches on the lake, a children’s playground, and picnic areas with grills and pavilions. The area also includes a boat ramp, courtesy dock, electric and water hookups, and group camping areas. Hikers love walking to the top of the dam for views of Lake Hartwell and the Savannah River.

The nearby Table Rock State Park has hiking trails of varying lengths, including the challenging 7.2-mile Table Rock Mountain Trail with spectacular views. Other popular hiking spots include the Stumphouse Tunnel and Issaqueena Falls. Discover more interesting articles.



Driving directions from Southern Pressure Washing to Hartwell Lakeside Park

Driving directions from Hartwell Lakeside Park to Elrod Ferry Recreation Area