Lake Gaston

The impoundment of Lake Gaston in 1963 was created for the purpose of hydroelectric power generation, and it is owned by Dominion Resources. Lake Gaston has more than 20,000 surface acres, is 34 miles long and 1.3 miles across at its widest point.  Its average water depth is 40 feet.  

As one of many lakes along the Roanoke River Basin, water feeds into Lake Gaston from the Kerr Lake Dam upstream and flows over the Gaston Dam into the Roanoke Rapids Lake downstream.  Under normal conditions the maximum water elevations are 200 feet above mean sea level on Gaston, and 132 feet in the Roanoke Rapids lake.  A real plus for Lake Gaston is its relatively constant water level, which generally fluctuates only one-half a foot higher or lower than its average 199.5 feet above mean sea level. 

Like all bodies of water its size, Dominion operates the lake within the regulations and license of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), and the U.S. Corps of Engineers.  It is monitored by the U.S. Coast Guard and the Wildlife Commissions of both North Carolina and Virginia.  

The “main” body of the lake runs east/west and is approx 35 miles long between the dams.  The main bridge crossing over the main lake (Eaton Ferry Bridge) is centrally located and elevated to allow boats to go under. The lake also includes 20 “Creeks” that run north or south off the main body.  All have access to the main body, and some require boating under a bridge.  Many people prefer living, boating, or swimming in the coves/creeks on Lake Gaston (large lakes themselves) because they tend to be quieter and there is less wind, surf and boating activity.  Property that is not located on the “main” lake is considered to be on a "cove".

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