Created by Duke power in 1916 and finished in 1923, Lake James has been one of the most successful lakes in the Catawba River System. Covering around 10.2 miles of surface area, and with a surface elevation of 1,200 feet, Lake James is one of the largest reservoirs in the mountains of Western North Carolina. The shoreline is around 150 miles with lots of small beaches, places for both lake and boat access, along with many campsites. As a part of the Catawba River System, the Catawba River flows in east from the Blue Ridge Mountains in McDowell County, and flows south on the North Carolina and South Carolina border into Lake Wylie.
Living around or on Lake James has great opportunities for family fun or even for those who like to spend time outdoors. Lake James State Park, located in both Burke and McDowell Counties, is near the small town of Nebo, North Carolina and covers 3,644 acres of land and borders 6,510 acers of land. Within the State Park, locals and visitors have the experience of enjoying the public beach access, fishing, hiking various trails, getting to see different types of wildlife, and spending time at the campsites.
Lake James offers many different marina and boat access places. Bear Creek Marina, Mimosa Boat Landing, Lake James Marina, and Castle Bridge Boat Access are all open to the public and offer a family friendly environment for all ages to enjoy.
Nebo is a small town on Lake James that is part of McDowell County. Although the town does not have very much to offer, Nebo’s pride is the State Park that brings in hundreds of people to the town each month. Over all, whether you live on Lake James or in the town of Nebo, there is always something to do. Having public lake access as well as a beach access, allows for fun at any time of the year. Not only does Lake James have many activities for kids and adults to do, it also has fantastic scenery and breath-taking views that would make anyone want to live there.