Green River Lake

544 Lake Road.
Campbellsville, Kentucky  42718
(270) 465-4463

Office hours: Mon. - Sun., 7:30 am - 5 p.m. (may vary, call ahead)

Daily Lake Information Line: (270) 465-8824 (updated daily)

Lake Levels

Lake Temperatures

Lake Map

 

To see a VIRTUAL TOUR of Green River Lake campgrounds, recreational areas, and other facilities click here.

Annual Day Use Passes are available at this location. More information may be accessed by clicking here.

The Corps of Engineers is now selling the America the Beautiful Passes; for more information click here or visit the USGS website by clicking here.

For additional information about Green River Lake, please see below.

 

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Green River Lake is situated in Adair and Taylor counties, lying amidst rolling terrain, steep bluffs and flowing streams in the section of Kentucky known as the Highland Rim.  The dam, located on the Green River, is an 11 mile drive from the cities of Campbellsville and Columbia, and less than 100 miles from Louisville and Lexington.
The Green River Lake Project was authorized under the Flood Control Act of 1938.  The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers started construction in April 1964, and the lake was completed in June 1969.  In addition to flood protection, recreation and natural resources management are authorized for this Project.

The Corps operates the lake primarily for flood control in the Upper Green River watershed and forms an integral unit in the comprehensive plan for flood control for the Ohio and Mississippi rivers.  The lake’s dam is located 305.7 miles above the mouth of the Green River and 26 miles upstream from Greensburg, Ky.

The Corps keeps the lake at a low level (winter pool) during fall and winter months, when excessive rainfall is likely.  The lake can retain surface water runoff should heavy rains occur, until the swollen streams and rivers below the dam recede and can handle the release of stored water without threatening lives or property.

Green River Lake is the largest project in the Louisville District, counting both the land and water acreage (33,793 acres).  The Corps, in cooperation with the Commonwealth of Kentucky, manages the land and water for wildlife, fisheries and recreation.  Green River Lake provides immeasurable benefits to the local economy through flood protection and recreation.

The 8,210 acre Green River Lake and surrounding area offers a wide variety of outdoor recreation opportunities, to include campgrounds, boat ramps, picnic shelters, beaches and a Visitor Center.  The Visitor Center is a must see facility and is at the heart of Green River Lake.  Located close to the Dam, the Green River Lake Visitor Center was built in 1972 as the US Army Corps of Engineers Louisville District’s first Interpretive Center and was upgraded in 1978 to house the Corps Office staff.  Today, the Visitor Center is a big attraction to tourists, locals and school groups due to its educational exhibits and helpful staff. 

Green River Lake has prevented over $195 million in flood damages since impoundment, and in fiscal year 2019 alone the lake generated approximately $40.67 million in visitor expenditures.


Prior records:

FY2019

Flood Damages prevention - $195.96 million (total to date)

Visitor Expenditures - $40.67 million

 

FY2016

Flood Damages prevention - $182.20 million (total to date)

 

FY2015

Flood Damages prevention - $172.45 million (total to date)


FY2014

Flood Damages prevention - $163.57 million (total to date)

 

FY2013

Flood Damages prevention - $159.19 million (total to date)

 

 

FY2012

Flood Damages prevention - $148.23 million (total to date)

Visitor Expenditures - 17.02 million



FY2011

Flood Damages prevention - $142.59 million (total to date)

Visitor Expenditures - 20.78 million



FY2010

Flood Damages prevention - $133.56 million (total to date)

Visitor Expenditures - 29.85 million



FY2009

Flood Damages prevention - $129.997 million (total to date)



FY2008

Flood Damages prevention - $123.39 million (total to date)

Visitor Expenditures - 34.75 million

Dike and Dam Information

Dike Type:

Earth

Maximum Height:

103 feet

Length:

1,952 feet


Dam Type:

Earth and rock fill

Maximum Height:

141 feet

Length:

2,350 feet

Maximum Width at base:

960 feet

Drainage area above dam:

682 square miles


Pool

Elevation

Area

Length

(Feet mean sea level)

(Acres)

(Miles)

Winter

668

7,205

21

Summer

675

8,210

25

Total Storage

713

19,100

35

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is committed to providing universal access so that the lake facilities and programs will be available to the widest possible range of visitors, including people with disabilities. Green River Lake has the following accessible facilities:

Location

     

Facility

Visitor Center

 

Theater, Picnic Shelter, Dam Overlook

Tailwater

 

Picnic Shelter

Holmes Bend

 

Fishing Pier, Picnic Shelter, Restroom, Campsite

Pikes Ridge

 

Fishing Pier, Campsite, Portable Restrooms

Smith Ridge

 

Fishing Pier, Picnic Sites, Campground Showerhouse, Campsite

Big Oak

 

Picnic Shelter

Corbin's Bend

 

Hunting Blind

Looking to do some boating? During the warm summer months, Green River Lake offers more than 8,000 acres of shimmering water for boating pleasure. Read on below to learn more about what to know before going on the water.

Boat Launches

There are 10 boat ramps at Green River Lake. Four of the ramps are managed and maintained by the Corps. These include the ramps located at the Holmes Bend, Smith Ridge, Pikes Ridge and Dam Area recreation sites. A launching permit (which can be purchased either annually or daily) is needed to launch a boat at these Corps operated ramps.

Another boat ramp is located at the Green River Lake State Park and is managed by the Kentucky Department of Parks. There is also a ramp at the Green River Marina. The other ramps include Snake Creek, Butler Creek, Arnold's Landing and also one at Emerald Isle Marina. One of these ramps (Snake Creek) is maintained by the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources while Arnold's Landing and Butler Creek are managed by the local Adair County, Kentucky government. For boat ramp locations click here.

Keep this in mind too - with the exception of the ramp at Pikes Ridge Campground, each of the ramps mentioned above are open year round, subject to water level. To check for high water ramp closures, call the Corps automated information line at (270) 465-8824.

Boating Regulations

Boating regulations at Green River Lake are administered by the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife. Check out the following link to the Boating section of the KDFWR website for more related information, including a downloadable version of the most recent Kentucky Fishing and Boating Guide: www.kdfwr.state.ky.us/

WHAT ABOUT MARINAS?
There are three marinas at Green River. For more information on what each has to offer, use the contact information listed below:

Emerald Isle Marina (270) 465-3412

Green River Marina (270) 465-2512

Holmes Bend Marina (270) 384-4425

Green River Lake has approximately 155 miles of fee boundary line (often referred to as the “red line") surrounding 23,967 acres of fee property above the summer pool. The boundary for Government owned land around Green River Lake is marked with red blaze marks on trees, and with farm-type metal posts, also painted red. Some of the metal posts mark the location of brass-capped monument markers that denote the boundary line. There are also plastic orange boundary line posts and small, red metal placards in some areas.

It is possible that recorded plats of private property do not agree with the true boundary line at Green River Lake. To prevent encroachments, the Corps recommends that adjacent property buyers contract the services of a licensed surveyor prior to purchase, and that current owners contract the services of a licensed surveyor prior to any construction. Any discrepancies must be resolved prior to any construction activities on any land in question. Any encroachments onto lands owned in fee by the United States are subject to collateral citations, which can result in a fine not to exceed $5,000 and/or up to six months in jail (Title 36 - Regulation Governing Use of Federal Property), and the responsible party will be required to remove the encroaching structure. Questions and requests for assistance should be made to the project office.

In addition to fee property, the Corps of Engineers has also purchased flowage easements on over 1,616 acres of land around Green River Lake, using the ground elevation of 718 as an acquisition guide. These easements were purchased for the temporary storage of flood water during periods of high rainfall. Because of the potential for flooding, allowable improvements to property with flowage easement restrictions are limited. Vegetation alteration (mowing, agriculture, timber harvesting, etc.) is allowed under the flowage easement restrictions. Structures not intended for human habitation are allowed only after written permission in the form of a Consent to Easement has been obtained from the Corps of Engineers. Septic systems and structures intended for human habitation are prohibited on land encumbered with a flowage easement.

The boundary line of flowage easement property is not well marked. Legal descriptions of acquired flowage easements are contained in the Government’s acquisition documents recorded in the County Recorder’s Office, and should appear as an encumbrance against the property during a title search. Some information on the boundary of flowage easement property is available at the Green River Lake project office. To locate the boundary line on any affected property, however, the Corps of Engineers recommends that landowners obtain the services of a licensed surveyor. Encroachments on land encumbered by a flowage easement are violations of legal restrictions on the property and are subject to litigation. They also constitute a title defect which may affect the future sale of the landowner’s property, and the Government cannot assist landowners in the resolution of title defects.

If questions about the fee or flowage easement boundary line at Green River Lake, contact the Green River Lake project office at (270) 465-4463. An appointment with a Corps Ranger can be scheduled to assist with answering any questions.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers operates three campgrounds at Green River Lake, and all three offer great campsite amenities and beautiful scenery. Both Holmes Bend Campground and Smith Ridge Campground have sites with water and electric along with several primitive sites. These two campgrounds also have shower house facilities. Pikes Ridge Campground has 20 sites with water and electric. Pikes Ridge also has several primitive sites but no shower house or flush restroom facilities at this time. The following information will help visitors select the right campsite for individual needs (click on the campground name to link to the Recreation.gov reservation service for campsite availability and booking information):

Holmes Bend Campground - Holmes Bend Campground, located in Adair County, is a class A campground with 125 campsites. Sites 1-23 are non-electric, primitive sites while sites 24-125 provide electric hookups. Sixty two sites also have water hookups provided. The campground opening date is April 15 and will close on October 23 and camping fees will range from $17 - $25 (depending on site type). Washhouse and restroom facilities are located in the campground along with potable water and dump stations. A nature trail and play area are also available. Location wise, Holmes Bend is located in the central time zone and is near Columbia, KY. Day-use fees are collected at the Corps boat ramp and a (reservable) picnic shelter is also nearby. A concessionaire marina is also located in this recreation area.  For a campground map click here.

Smith Ridge Campground - Smith Ridge Campground, located in Taylor County, is a class A campground with 80 campsites. Eighteen sites are non-electric, impacted sites while 62 sites provide water and electric hookups. Thirty-one sites also have water hookups provided. The campground opening date is May 13 and will close on September 11 and camping fees will range from $17 - $25 (depending on site type). Washhouse and restroom facilities are available along with potable water and dump stations. A nature trail and play area are also available. Location wise, Smith Ridge is located in the eastern time zone and is near Campbellsville, KY. Day-use fees are collected at the Corps boat ramp while a picnic area and beach are nearby as well. A concessionaire marina is also located in this recreation area.  For a campground map click here.

Pikes Ridge Campground - Pikes Ridge Campground, located in Taylor County, is a class B campground with 60 campsites. Sites 1-20 include water and electric hookups while sites 21-60 are non-electric, primitive sites. Almost every site at Pikes Ridge is located near the lake. Because of this, certain sites are prone to flooding at elevations slightly above summer (seasonal) pool. The campground opening date is May 13 and will close on September 25 with camping fees ranging from $15 to $21 depending on the site. No washhouse facilities are located in the campground, but a play area, potable water, pit toilets, and a dump station are available. Pikes Ridge is located in the eastern time zone and is near Campbellsville, KY. Day-use fees are collected at the Corps boat ramp for those not registered as campers and a beach for campers' use is located in the campground as well.  For a campground map click here.

For information about the State Park Campground at Green River Lake visit their website link via the Lessees and Concessionaires page.

Campground Rules

To see a virtual tour of Green River Lake campgrounds, recreational areas, and other facilities click here.

From Louisville, Kentucky: Merge onto I65 South toward Nashville (travel approximately 44 miles). Exit on ramp 91 for KY-61 toward Hodgenville. Stay to the left and take the ramp toward US-31W Bypass/KY-61/Elizabethtown/Hodgenville. Then, stay immediately to the right and take the ramp onto Wendell H. Ford Western Kentucky Parkway - East. Wendell H. Ford Western Kentucky Parkway becomes KY-61 South/Lincoln Pkwy (travel approximately 8.6 miles). Turn right onto KY-210 (travel approximately 29.2 miles). KY-210 becomes KY-55 South, continue straight ahead. Cross a bridge over Green River and climb a large hill, at the top of the hill is an entrance sign, turn left onto Lake Rd/KY-1061. The road will come to a "Y" - go to the right and it will bring you to the office/visitor center (if you go to the left it will take you across the dam). End at 544 Lake Road, Campbellsville, KY 42718-9393 US. Distance is approximately 93 miles.

From Nashville, Tenn.: Merge onto I-65 North toward Louisville (travel approximately 76 miles). Merge onto Louie B. Nunn Cumberland Pkwy via exit 43 toward Glasgow/Somerset (travel approximately 49 miles). Take Exit 46 for KY-61 towards Columbia/Burkesville. From the exit turn left onto KY-61 North and go straight thru the red light. At the second red light turn left onto KY-55 North. The road will come to a “T” at another red light, turn left to stay on KY-55 North. Follow KY-55 North approximately 10 miles and then turn right onto Lake Road at the “Corps of Engineers, Green River Lake” entrance sign. Continue to a “Y” in the road. Stay right at the “Y” for the Corps of Engineers Office & Visitor Center. [Stay left at the “Y” for the Green River Lake Dam.] Distance is approximately 142 miles.

From Lexington, Ky: From Lexington take the Bluegrass Parkway West. Take Parkway Exit 42 and turn onto KY-555 toward Springfield/Lebanon. At Springfield KY-555 changes (junctions) onto KY-55 South at a traffic light, go straight thru light to stay on KY-55 South. Stay on KY-55 South for about 7.5 miles. At red light turn right onto KY-2154 (Veterans Memorial Hwy). Stay on KY-2154 and at second red light turn right onto US-68 West/US-55 South. Follow US-68 West/US-55 South for about 18 miles into Campbellsville. At a four-way intersection turn left to stay on KY-55 South (New Columbia Rd). Continue approximately 8 miles and turn left at the “Corps of Engineers, Green River Lake” entrance sign. Continue to a “Y” in the road. Stay right at the “Y” for the Corps of Engineers Office & Visitor Center. [Stay left at the “Y” for the Green River Lake Dam.] Distance is approximately 90 miles.

The Corps hopes these maps help visitors in planning trips to Green River Lake. Additional maps are available at the project office.

 Green River Lake Map

Fun Facts ----> Green River Lake offers one of the premiere muskie fisheries in Kentucky. The KDFWR annually stocks muskellunge in the lake, and fish up to 40 inches long aren't uncommon. Muskies are most active in March/April, and then September through November.

Other Fish Found in Green River Lake
Smallmouth, largemouth, crappie and other species are present in the lake for anglers to pursue. The Corps of Engineers and the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources work together on various projects to improve fish habitats as well. The results from valuable partnerships such as this result in increased angler success, thus providing enjoyable fishing experiences for folks of all ages.

Where to Find Fishing Rules and Regulations:

When fishing Green River Lake, remember that all Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources fishing regulations are enforced at the lake. For additional information about fishing regulations, including size limits, visit the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources website.

Don't Miss Out on this too...
The Corps, the Friends of Green River Lake and KDFWR team up annually to host a fishing day especially for kids. The event, which always includes free take home treats for the kids who participate, is held generally in August and is open free of charge to anyone who would like to participate. For more information on this event, call the Corps office at (270) 465-4463.

Don't forget too that all Green River Lake related special events, including the kid's fishing day, are posted on the " Upcoming Events" page. 

 

Fishing Tournaments

In 2017, federal regulations were put in place that required all Special Uses (fishing tournaments, weddings, sporting events, races, etc…) of Federal Government facilities to be regulated and permitted. Whether your fishing club or group is having a one-time event within the year, or plans to have several throughout the year, a permit is still required from the Corps of Engineers. Fees for the permit depend on the details of the event and can also be waived in return for services provided to the project. The permitting process first begins with filling out the Special Use Permit Application. Applications must be submitted 30 days prior to the activity/event. A permit application can be mailed, emailed, or faxed. The application has several questions for the activity/event holder to answer about their activity/event. We will review the completed application, decide what fees or other paperwork, if any, are needed, and decide if the requested use is an Activity or an Event.

 

If use is deemed as a Special Activity, a Special Activity Permit will be issued and fees can be collected.

a. A one-time Special Activity Permit may be issued for small club fishing tournaments that reoccur throughout the year and the one-time fee would cover that year.

b. Fees for special activities can be waived or charged at the discretion of the park manager based on in-kind services provided by the permit holder (trash pickup, cleanup of area, etc.)

c. If the Special Activity would require assistance from the USACE, a cost reimbursement could be determined.

 

If use is deemed a Special Event, a Special Event Permit will be issued and a minimum $75.00 fee will be charged for the event.

a. For Special Events with more than 50 participants and special equipment (motor boats, bounce houses, Adventure races, corporate events, etc.,) insurance will have to be provided.

b. If the event requires USACE assistance, fill out cost reimbursement.

c. For-profit events will be assessed a 2% fee of gross revenue. In-kind services may be accepted in lieu of these fees at the discretion of the park manager (trash pickup, cleanup of area, etc.).

d. Fees for special events can be waived or charged at the discretion of the park manager based on in-kind service performed by the permit holder (trash pickup, cleanup of area, etc.)

 

This process helps us keep track of what tournaments are taking out of what boat ramps and when. This information helps to regulate overcrowding at the boat ramps around the lake.

 

KDFWR Fish Attractor Map

Volunteers

Volunteers provide a valuable service while gaining experience.  The US Army Corps of Engineers at Green River Lake offers many types of volunteer opportunities.  Volunteers can participate in organized events, such as the Annual Lakeshore Cleanup, or they can sign up to do their own approved project.  Volunteers can do many types of things to help:  trail maintenance, campground hosting, assisting with interpretive programs, litter removal, park beautification, tree planting, and much more.  Individuals and groups are welcome.  If you are interested in volunteering at Green River Lake, contact our office at (270) 465-4463.       

Volunteer.gov website is an excellent resource for finding volunteer opportunities across the nation.  With almost 12 million acres of land and water, The Corps of Engineers relies on volunteers to help get the job done.  The Volunteer.gov website helps connect potential volunteers with those Corps sites in need to access the website click here.

Friends of Green River Lake

The Friends of Green River Lake is a non-profit group that also provides excellent volunteer opportunities.  The group was created in July 2010 and partners with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, State of Kentucky, County and Local Governments, as well as local businesses and private individuals in management of 20,000 acres of Public Land which offers extensive opportunities for camping, fishing, hunting, wildlife viewing, hiking, and biking.

Mission Statement: The mission of the Friends of Green River Lake is to promote the educational and recreational uses of Green River,... lake shore and associated land regions while protecting and enhancing their ecologial, and cultural attributes.

Each year the group organizes large events at the lake such as the annual "I'm A Dam Runner" 5K Run/Walk, the annual Kid's Outdoor Day event, the annual Outhouse Ride, and grow and create a corn maze at the Green River Lake State Park. The group also helps sponsor many events such as the Halloween in the Park at the State Park, the Fall Festival at Holmes Bend campground, the annual Fishing with a Veteran Event, and the Annual Lakeshore Cleanup. They also provide funds to purchase campground program items and trail signage.  

The group meets at 6 PM (Eastern Time) the second Thursday of each month at the Corps of Engineers Visitors Center at Green River Lake; all are welcome. Membership is only $10.00/year.

For more information, please visit their Facebook Page at: https://www.facebook.com/FriendsOfGreenRiverLake/ or their website at: https://www.friendsofgreenriverlake.org/.

A number of game and nongame species inhabit the lands of the Green River Wildlife Management Area. Various habitats support deer, turkey, rabbit, quail, squirrel, dove and waterfowl.

Green River WMA quota hunt
Deer hunting with firearms is available through the KDFWR quota hunt system and requires advanced application. For more information on applying, feel free to visit the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources website.

Other Hunting Programs Available
The KDFWR prepares some acreage for fall dove hunting on the WMA. The Corps of Engineers also offers a limited number of permitted blinds to hunt waterfowl via cooperation with KDFWR. Selection is made through a drawing, held annually on the last Saturday in September at the Corps' Green River Lake Visitor Center building. More information about the waterfowl blind drawing can be found on the "Upcoming Events"  page.

Other Important Information to Remember:

  1. Hunting pressure is moderate-to-heavy on the WMA due to its proximity to several major urban areas. Some WMA portions are also closed to hunting.
  2. Respect private property. Area boundaries are marked with red paint and red posts.
  3. Remember that it is the hunter's responsiblity to hunt only in areas open to hunting and to follow all federal, state and local laws.

**For complete hunting/fishing/boating information for Green River Lake and the surrounding WMA areas, call the KDFWR at 1 (800) 858-1549, weekdays 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. EST.

The Corps of Engineers has entered into partnerships with various agencies, organizations, and businesses to increase recreational opportunities and facilitate management of Green River Lake. These partnerships include the following commercial concessions (marinas) and parks.

From camping to swimming to picnicking, the Green River Lake State Park offers a wonderful variety of outdoor recreational opportunities. For more information on the park's facility and program offerings, feel free to call the state park office at (270) 465-8255 or just click on the link below. In addition to the state park's facilities, the Green River Marina is also located nearby.

Two other marinas are also located on Green River Lake. Emerald Isle Marina is located in the Smith Ridge Recreation Area while Holmes Bend Marina is located in the Holmes Bend Recreaton Area. For more information on the services offered by thse marinas, feel free to contact each.

Emerald Isle Marina (270) 465-3412

Green River Marina (270) 465-2512

Holmes Bend Marina (270) 384-4425

In addition to the partnerships listed above, the local Adair County, Kentucky government maintains the Butler Creek Recreation Area and the Arnold's Landing Recreation Area.

Green River Lake also supplies drinking water to a large part of the surrounding area. Both Adair and Taylor counties maintain water intake facilities.

  Green River Lake State Park Information

The Visitor Center is a must see facility and is at the heart of Green River Lake. Located close to the Dam, the Green River Lake Visitor Center was built in 1972 as the US Army Corps of Engineers Louisville District’s first Interpretive Center and was upgraded in 1978 to house the Corps Office staff. Today, the Visitor Center is a big attraction to tourists, locals and school groups due to its educational exhibits and helpful staff. Thousands of people each year enjoy touring the Center and taking in the exhibits which include: Native American artifacts from the area, a live animal displays, a large 1500 gallon fish aquarium, nature touch room, bird viewing area, live beehive tree, and several interactive water safety displays. Visitors can also view a movie about Green River Lake in the theater which is located right in the Visitor Center. Just outside, visitors can tour The Atkinson Griffon Log house which was used as a civil war hospital, have a picnic or take in one of the many hiking trails. The Center is also a one stop shop to get information and brochures on all there is to do at Green River Lake and the surrounding area. So, on your next visit to Green River Lake, make it a point to stop by the Visitor Center and learn all that Green River Lake has to offer.

To see a virtual tour of Green River Lake campgrounds, recreational areas, and other facilities click here.

Warm weather, sunny skies and a nice breeze blowing - what better weather for a picnic. So, if looking to get out to Green River Lake for either a a small outing or hoping to find the perfect spot for a family reunion, look no further.

How many shelters are available?
There are five Corps operated picnic shelters at Green River Lake. The shelter at Holmes Bend can only be reserved online at www.recreation.gov or by calling 1-866-444-6777, the other four shelters are available for reservations by calling the project office at (270) 465-4463.

The shelters available and the use fees are as follows:

Big Oak (located at the dam area)
Visitor Center
Holmes Bend
Satterly (located at Site 1)
Tailwater

$ 50
$ 50
$ 50
$ 50
$ 50

If a shelter has not been reserved for a particular day, it may be used free of charge, on a first-come, first-served basis.

What about individual picnic sites?
In addition to the shelters listed above, there are several individual picnic sites located at the Holmes Bend and Smith Ridge day use areas along with those sites around the dam area.

Louisville District Information - Picnic Shelters

Beautiful Scenery and Great Outdoor Recreational Opportunities are in Abundance at Green River Lake
Lying amidst rolling terrain, steep bluffs and flowing streams, Green River Lake lies in the section of Kentucky known as the Highland Rim. And it is within this area that visitors will find some of the most gorgeous vistas and a terrific variety of outdoor activities to choose from. So, whether camping, fishing, boating, hunting, hiking, swimming or taking in the wildlife, we think visitors will enjoy Green River Lake.

The Corps of Engineers operates three campgrounds at Green River Lake. These campgrounds offer a variety of sites to choose from, including waterfront, woodland, primitive, and developed (water and electricity). Another campground is operated by the Kentucky Department of Parks.

For those interested in boating, 10 boat ramps are available for public use at Green River Lake, including one at each campground. Three marinas offer full services on the lake, including boat rental, slip rental, gas, bait, fishing gear, and picnicking supplies. The lake covers over 8,000 acres, so there's plenty of room for you!

Fishing at Green can be quite rewarding too. Walleye, crappie, white bass, channel catfish, muskie and bluegill are all found in good numbers in the lake. Hunting on the land surrounding Green River Lake is also popular.

To see a virtual tour of Green River Lake campgrounds, recreational areas, and other facilities click here.

**Want to learn more? If so, feel free to click on the links listed on the main page to get even more information, call the project office at (270) 465-4463 or e-mail for further assistance  as our staff is always happy to help in planning a Green River Lake getaway.

Recreation use fees are collected at Green River Lake for overnight camping at three campgrounds, launching at four Corps-operated boat ramps, and rental of five group picnic shelters.

Camping Fees

Camping fees vary depending on the campground and type of site selected. Fees for Holmes Bend and Smith Ridge campgrounds range from $17 (primitive sites),  $23 (electric only sites) and $25 (water and electric sites) per night and fees for Pikes Ridge Campground range from $15 (primitive sites) - $21 (water & electric or electric only sites) per night. Campers possessing an America the Beautiful Access or Senior card get a 50% discount of the camping fees, however, the owner of the card being used must be staying on the campsite receiving the discount.

Boat Ramp Fees

The Corps of Engineers operates boat ramps in four areas at which recreation fees are collected: Holmes Bend, Site One (located around the dam area), Smith Ridge and Pikes Ridge day use areas. A daily use fee of $5 is charged to launch a boat at one of the Corps owned fee ramps. An annual pass can be purchased for $40 that is good for an entire year and as long as its hanging in the vehicle windshield, a daily fee is not necessary. The annual pass permits the holder and accompanying passengers to use all day use facilities at Corps-operated boat ramps nationwide for the calendar year. At Green, the annual passes can be purchased at the project office year around, at the campgrounds when they are open, or by calling the project office at (270) 465-4463 if paying with a credit card. Also, if the vehicle launching a boat correctly displays one of the many America the Beautiful discount cards (must be current cannot be expired) in its windshield, a daily fee is not necessary.

Picnic Shelter Fees

Green River Lake offers five group picnic shelters for the public’s use. The shelters are located in the following areas: Holmes Bend, Tailwater, Big Oak (located around the dam area), Satterly/Site 1, and the Visitor Center. The daily use fee for a shelter rental is $50. The shelter at Holmes Bend can only be reserved online at www.recreation.gov or by calling 1-866-444-6777, the other four shelters are available for reservations by calling the project office at (270) 465-4463. For additional information, check out the "Picnicking and Shelter Rental" page.

For safety, visitors are encouraged to swim in designated areas only.

There is no lifeguard service at Corps beaches -- swim at one's own risk. Always use the "Buddy System" -- don't swim alone.

Swimming, wading, snorkeling or scuba diving at one's own risk is permitted, except at boat launching sites, designated mooring points and public docks, or other areas so designated by the District Commander.

If you have questions about swimming, contact the Park Manager.

Public Beach Locations Around Green River Lake:
There are several developed beaches for visitors to enjoy at Green River Lake. Public use beach locations include the day use areas at Holmes Bend and Smith Ridge recreation areas. The Green River Lake State Park also has a public use beach, located adjacent to the campground. One other developed beach is located in the Pikes Ridge Campground but is for use by registered campers at Pikes Ridge only. Remember this - there are no lifeguards provided at either Holmes Bend, Smith Ridge or Pikes Ridge, so swim at one's own risk. Please call the Green River Lake State Park office at (270) 465-8255 to inquire about their lifeguard staffing.

What about Swimming Around the Shoreline?
Swimming is allowed in other areas, at one's own risk, along the shoreline except at or near the boat ramps and marinas.

**Remember: To ensure visitor's safety, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers staff at Green River Lake reminds everyone that swimming is encouraged at developed areas only. Don't forget too that No lifeguards are provided at any of the Corps' managed beaches around Green River Lake, so swimmers should know their limits and keep safe.

Louisville District’s Designated Swimming Areas and Beach Locations

Along with the great camping, boating, fishing, hunting and picnicking opportunities found around Green River Lake, there are also almost 50 miles of trails meandering around the lake that afford some of the most scenic views in the region. From crossing lush valleys to taking in gorgeous overlooks, visitors are sure to find a trail that meets their abilities and gives a sense of hiking adventure. A variety of multi-use trails; to include, hiking, biking, and horse backriding are available at the Green River Lake State Park as well as the Holmes Bend Recreation Area. In addition some hiking only trails are located near the Dam/Visitor Center area as well at the Green River Lake State Park. So why not spend a little time exploring the hills and hollows doting the land around Green River Lake? Feel free to call the Corps office if you have questions at (270) 465-4463 and/or send us an email. More information on the trails found at the lake as well as maps of the trails can be found below.

For a list of the trails found at Green River Lake click here.

Maps

Dam/Visitor Center Area Trails

Fisher Bend-Holmes Bend Recreation Area Trails

Green River Lake State Park Trails

2022 Recreation Season

All dates listed below are tentative. Due to COVID regulations that may be in place at the time of the events, the status or dates of the events are subject to change.

April 17th-23rd, 2022: National Volunteer Week.

For more information on ways you can volunteer visit this website: http://www.pointsoflight.org/ or http://volunteer.gov/index.cfm.

April 22nd, 2022: Earth Day.

For more information on what you can do to make a difference on this day visit: http://www.earthday.org/.

April 15th, 2022: Opening day for Corps operated campground, Holmes Bend, at Green River Lake.

Reservations for this campground can be made at www.Recreation.gov, or by calling 1-877-444-6777, or be seeing the Park Attendant. Reservations can now be made the same day as arrival. You must have a reservation before setting up on a campsite; reserved campsites will no longer be marked!

Fees: $17 for primitive sites, $23 for electric only sites and $25 for water and electric sites.

May 13th, 2022: Opening day for Corps operated campgrounds, Smith Ridge and Pikes Ridge, at Green River Lake.

Reservations for these campgrounds can be made at www.Recreation.gov, or by calling 1-877-444-6777, or be seeing the Park Attendant. Reservations can now be made the same day as arrival. You must have a reservation before setting up on a campsite; reserved campsites will no longer be marked!

Fees: Smith Ridge $17 for primitive sites, $23 for water only sites and $25 for water and electric sites. Pikes Ridge $15 for primitive sites and $21 for water and electric sites

April 15th, 2022: Opening of Corps of Engineers Visitor Center on Weekends.

The Visitor will begin staying open on weekends and will be open 7 days a week from 7:30am - 5:00pm EST.

May 21st, 2022: National Kid's to Parks Day.

National Kid's to Parks Day is a nation-wide day of outdoor play organized by National Park Trust (NPT) in cooperation with a host of local and national collaborators. to find out more information or to find a Kid's to Parks Day event near you visit: http://www.kidstoparks.org/ or http://www.parktrust.org/.

May 21st - 27th 2022: National Safe Boating Week.

For more information on what you can do to be safe while boating visit: http://www.safeboatingcouncil.org/.

June 4th- 12th, 2022: National Fishing and Boating Week.

To find out more information or to see when your state's free fishing days (you don't have to have a license) are visit: http://takemefishing.org/. Kentucky's free fishing days will be June 4-5, 2022.

June 4th, 2022: National Trails Day.    

The American Hiking Society's National Trails Day is the country's largest celebration of trails. Visit this website, http://www.americanhiking.org/ , to find a location near you that will be hosting an event in celebration of the day.

August 20th, 2022: Kid's Fishing Derby.

A day where local kids of all ages can come out and fish for free! All equipment is supplied, no registration is necessary. Prizes are given to kids who catch the most and biggest fish!

September 17, 2022: 36th Annual Lake Shore Cleanup

Take an opportunity during this time to help us cleanup the lake shore. More details TBA.

September 11th, 2022: Closing day for Corps operated campground, Smith Ridge, at Green River Lake.

September 15th - November 1st: Drawdown of lake 1/2'.

September 24th, 2022: National Public Land's Day.

To find an event near you where you can help out in celebration of the day, visit: https://www.neefusa.org/npld.

September 25th, 2022: Closing day for Corps operated campground, Pikes Ridge, at Green River Lake.

September 24th, 2022: Annual Duck Blind Drawing at Green River Lake Visitor Center.

The Green River Lake WMA waterfowl blind drawing will be held Saturday, Sept. 24. The drawing will be held at the Green River Lake Corps of Engineers office off KY 55, approximately 7 miles south of Campbellsville. Registration is 9 a.m. Eastern time with the drawing at 10 a.m.

Hunters may construct a permanent blind or use a boat or portable blind, but each blind site must be permanently pinned with a permanent marker identifying permit holders for the site. Those hunters selected hold first rights for use of the blind site, but these blinds sites open to public use if the selected hunters are not in the blinds by 30 minutes before shooting time.

October 8th, 2022: Fishing with A Veteran Event.

Our Veterans have done so much for our country. As a way to give back to them and say Thank You for their service, we'd like to take them fishing. Veterans and fisherman are asked to pre-register before the event. The event will take place at the Holmes Bend Boat Ramp.

October 21st – 22nd, 2022: Holmes Bend Campground Fall Festival.

A day of fun filled Fall/Halloween themed events within the campground. Lots of games and activities followed trick or treating and by best decorated campsite contests and best costume contests. More info to come later in the year.

October 23rd, 2022: Closing day for Corps operated campground, Holmes Bend, at Green River Lake.

November 1st - December 1st: Drawdown of lake continues 6 1/2' to winter elevation.

Wildlife / Natural Resource Management

The Green River Wildlife Management Area (WMA) and Green River Lake lie in Taylor and Adair counties. The Corps administers the lands and water of Green River Lake in cooperation with several federal and state agencies and local governments. The Corps also owns the WMA and licenses it to the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources for wildlife management purposes.

What exactly is a Wildlife Management Area?

The Green River WMA is located about 10 miles south of Campbellsville, along the shoreline of Green River Lake. The WMA contains approximately 20,500 acres of relatively steep slopes with oak-hickory forests, flat bottomlands and ridgetops with mixed hardwood forests. There are cleared areas with agricultural crops, warm and cool season grass fields and "old-field succession" habitats.

Hunting, fishing, wildlife viewing, hiking, educational programs and photography are just a few of the many activities available at Green River WMA. Several cooperative projects are also ongoing with Ducks Unlimited, Quail Unlimited, the National Wild Turkey Federation and local farmers.

Wildlife Management Area objectives:

  1. To manage wildlife lands toward the creation, enhancement and sustainability of permanent wildlife habitats and populations
  2. To manage lands for the preservation and enhancement of public outdoor recreational opportunities
  3. To restore wildlife species to their natural habitats
  4. To provide opportunities for fish and wildlife education
  5. To provide demonstrations of proven wildlife management practices

For more information on how the Corps is partnering with other agencies to provide quality natural resource management around Green River Lake, feel free to give the office a call at (270) 465-4463.

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