Lake Gaston is conveniently located about an hour from Richmond, Virginia and Raleigh, North Carolina. Lake Gaston is one of the truly superior lakes in the country. It is some 20,000 acres and 34 miles long, approximately 1 1/2 miles wide at the lower end of the lake. It has over 350 miles of shoreline. Lake Gaston begins at Kerr Dam, a lake built in 1953 for flood control. Below Lake Gaston is Roanoke Rapids Lake, a smaller lake built in 1955 for hydroelectric power. Gaston Dam completed in 1963, borders the counties of Mecklenburg and Brunswick in Virginia, and the counties of Warren, Halifax, and Northampton in North Carolina. Normal height of the water is 200 feet above sea level and by regulation, the water depth may vary only one foot, plus or minus from the normal level except in case of emergency.
Because North Carolina Power schedules most of the power distribution from Kerr Lake Dam and also controls the Gaston Dam, both dams typically operate at the same time. This kind of coordination keeps the water level in Lake Gaston stable during normal conditions. The fact that it fluctuates usually less than one foot has encouraged high quality recreational use and resulted in a boost for the local economy. People like the stabiltiy and beauty of the lakes. In the decades since the dams were built, the fish population in Lake Gaston has grown strong and diverse. A steady flow from the dams helps minimize the impact of heavy fishing pressure on the striped bass population. Lake Gaston is well stocked with game fish which include striped bass or rock fish, large mouth bass, crappie, sunfish and several varieties of catfish. Other species of fish sometimes caught are walleye, yellow perch, and chain pickerel. Hunting for many species of game is prevelent in many areas near the lake. There are hundreds of subdivisions around the lake where many own retirement homes and many others own homes for weekends or vacations.
There are also five resort style campgrounds on the lake. These campgrounds attract thousands of consumers to the lake each week during the peak season which typically runs from May to September. These campgrounds are unique in that they all offer long term yearly leases or property ownership to their residents, in addition to attracting overnight or weekly campers. These non-traditional style property owners visit the lake frequently and utilize local businesses. Campground in this area create very concentrated numbers of consumers, recreational boaters, fishermen, and hunters in the area. A single campground regularly accommodates 5000 guests over a peak season weekend.
Work on your golf game while you're enjoying the area. Lake Gaston offers numerous golf courses, both on the lake and the surrounding area. Shopping is never very far away with easy access to South Hill on the north side of the lake and Roanoke Rapids to the south. Of course, there are quaint towns in the area which offer a laid back, casual experience. And don't forget Under The Sun in Bracey for all your lake needs!