Like all lakes on the Catawba river system Lake Hickory was formed by the damming of this river. Lake Hickory was formed in 1927 with the creation of the Oxford Dam to supply water to the geographic region as well as for hydro electric power generation purposes. As a result we were lucky enough to be left with a beautiful lake which brings many visitors and new residents to our area. Lake Hickory covers almost 4,223 acres with 105 miles of shoreline and is located on the northern edge of the town of Hickory, NC which gives the lake its name. Today Lake Hickory is a fairly developed lake with a diverse array of homes and land for different tastes and budgets. Lake Hickory with recent development and very close proximity to shopping, restaurants, and hospitals has become has began to differentiate itself from other area lakes and is seeing price increases due to those reasons.
When I was 8 years old my parents bought a house on Lake Hickory and I remember the first time I ever walked out the back door of that home and saw the Lake. It’s close enough to the mountains and the source of the headwaters on Grandfather mountain that the water still retains a nice blue color. I made a bee line for the water and onto the sandy beach and jumped it. The most vivid memory though was that it was early April so the water was still pretty cold and I was only in for a second. I’ve had a special place in my heart for this lake ever since.
Fast forward 30 years and I live in the Lake Norman area but continue to own a home on Lake Hickory and besides working on the lake also spend quality time with my family there. In those 30 years the area and lake have changed quite a bit. Lake Hickory has now began to distinguish itself from its neighbors through a growing population and the luxuries that go along with that. The lake now features 4 full service marinas, 4 restaurants that you can visit by boat, multiple city parks and public access areas, and a City of Hickory mile long “riverwalk” which construction is now underway on. More info on the riverwalk here hickorync.gov/content/riverwalk-information Lake Hickory has over 10 active VRBO’s that I have been very surprised with the amount of traffic on which tells me Lake Hickory is beginning to become a destination all to itself apart from the city. Other cool features that stand out are the sand bar, LP Frans stadium fireworks, and scuba lessons. The sand bar is a large cove area on the eastern side of the lake which is a great place to tie up with your neighbors, meet some people, and just enjoy the day. Typically the sandbar is about 4-5 feet deep and is a unique place where you can walk around on a sandy bottom in the middle of the lake. Here is a drone video showing what looks to be a slow day at the sand bar. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f0_mshO_vSs
Another unique feature on Lake Hickory is its proximity to LP Frans stadium the home of the minor league baseball team the Hickory crawdads. The Hickory crawdads are a minor league affiliate of the Texas rangers and every weekend home game in the summer win or lose the Crawdads shoot fireworks from the stadium. With the stadium being right beside the lake it has become a pastime of many local boaters to meet out on the lake to watch the free fireworks show. I’ve seen over 30 boats docked waiting for the show.
One new feature that is very unique to Lake Hickory is Scuba lessons. Its on the only lake in the area that I know of where you can become fully scuba certified. Lake Hickory Scuba and Marina has been offering scuba lessons for the past 7 years. Here is a great info video from Brad and Lake Hickory Scuba. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sck41__dlUw
The town of Hickory which gives the Lake its name is a city of about 40,000 people and is where residents of the Lake will venture for shopping, grocery, fine dining, minor league baseball games, farmers markets, breweries, Valley Hills mall, multiple hospitals, etc. The city of Hickory is the hub of what is called the “Unifour” area which includes the towns of Taylorsville, Lenoir, and Morganton. The population of those surrounding towns and counties tops 350,000 so if you think a 40,000 person town may be too small you actually have the best of both worlds as you have all the luxuries of much larger cities due to the “hub” status of hickory yet don’t have the traffic, pollution, taxes, or other negatives of those large urban areas.
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As mentioned previously there are many different real estate options available on Lake Hickory and currently we have homes available from $150,000 to $2.5000,000 million. We have multiple gated communities surrounding the lake with my favorite of those being Anchors Landing. Anchors landing features over 300 homesites with about 1/3 of those being lakefront and many that are not lake front feature deeded boat slips which allow interior lots to still live the lake lifestyle. The neighborhood also features miles of paved nature trails, a community beach, interior lakes with canoe and kayak holders, boat and camper storage, huge clubhouse, and community pool. Many buyers are hesitant to buy properties with active HOA’s but in this community it is very much an asset. With an architectural review committee in place with a stated goal of keeping the community full of trees it creates a really beautiful naturalistic atmosphere. Many of the homes in the community have taken a “modern mountain” architectural approach and this neighborhood really has a one of a kind feel.
They are bordered on the west side by NC hwy 321 and on the east side by NC Hwy 16. Hwy 16 may be a small 2 lane highway but it very conveniently runs directly north from Charlotte all the way to Virginia. Lake Hickory real estate is also only 8 miles away from I-40, which runs directly through Hickory and can take you to the North Carolina Mountains and the city of Asheville or East to Winston Salem in about 1 hour.
Aside from the sparkling clear lake, there’s many native species of animals and vegetation. Bald eagles can sometimes be viewed soaring overhead and a mating pair are currently established just across from the city of Hickory park. There’s also an array of Blue Herrons, King Fishers, and many species of native ducks and migrating species. The lake’s seasonally warm waters, fluctuating depths, and water flows all help to support healthy populations of fish. I’m not a huge fisherman myself but as far as fishing goes Lake Hickory is best known for its stripped bass. The lake record is over 60 pounds and trophy fish are regularly pulled out during the winter. The area has many fishing tournaments throughout the year for residents to enjoy. This is my personal record back in 2009
There are two golf courses available here. Golfers can choose from either the 9-hole Town Club or the 27-hole Catawba Springs.Also available at the country club are tennis courts, a fitness center and restaurants.