Marina reacts to lower lake levels

All of this beautiful weather and sunshine could be hurting some East Tennessee lakes.

Jerry Dalton has docked his boat at Sequoyah Marina on Norris Lake for more than 20 years. In his time boating in East Tennessee, he has learned one thing about the weather.

"I have lived here all my life, and really you just don't know what you're going to get," said Dalton.

According to Travis Brickey with TVA, the lake levels at Norris Lake and Cherokee Lake are lower than usual. That's because a drier spring has kept reservoir levels low.

Because of this, the levels will be lower come the beginning of lake recreational season on June 1. Norris has received 50% of its normal run off from rain, while Cherokee has seen only 49% of the usual.

Jim Folck became co-owner of Sequoyah Marina 17 years ago and his business thrives on a mix of rainfall and sunshine.

"You get some nice weather you will get some people out here but you do have some cautious people that are from out of town that if they know the lake isn't full, they may decide to hold off just because they aren't educated about the lake," said Folck.

When the water levels are this low you will see shallow spots closer to the surface. That is dangerous when you are taking your boat out. Especially at night when you can't necessarily see what's in front of you.

Folck offers safety tips to his customers about the shallow spots.

"I actually tell them, 'I want you to cruise down the center, I want you to go wide around the turns, And I want you to use caution in the coves,'" said Folck.

He believes the lake is still enjoyable, even if it's a little lower than hoped.

Fort Loudoun Lake and Douglas Lake are expected to see normal levels, but TVA isn't sure Cherokee and Norris will ever reach ideal depths this coming summer.

If you are interested in knowing the lake levels, you can download the TVA lake level cell phone app.


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