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Patoka Lake

4512 N. Cuzco Road, South
Dubois, IN 47527-9661
Telephone: (812) 678-3761 or 3762
Fax: (812) 678-3761
Office hours: M-F, 6:30 a.m. - 4 p.m. (may vary, call ahead)

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Welcome to Patoka Lake web site. The lake lies in Dubois, Crawford and Orange counties in southern Indiana. The dam is located approximately 118.3 miles above the mouth of the Patoka River, a tributary of the Wabash River approximately 12 miles northeast of Jasper, Ind. 

Patoka Lake exists as a cooperative management effort between the Corps of Engineers and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources. The lake has 8,880 acres of water in the summer for fishing, boating, swimming and other water-related activities. The Patoka Lake region offers many opportunities to enjoy wildlife or recreate in the great outdoors. The menu on the right leads to specific recreation and other lake information.

Patoka Lake was authorized under the Flood Control Act of 1965. The Louisville District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers designed, built, and operates the project to reduce flood damages downstream from the dam. The dam is located 118.3 miles above the mouth of the Patoka River, a tributary of the Wabash River.

During the fall and winter months, when excessive rainfall is likely, the lake is kept at a relatively low level referred to as winter pool. Should heavy rains occur, surface water runoff is stored in the lake until the swollen streams and rivers below the dam have receded and can handle the release of the stored water without damage to lives or property.

Buffalo, during their annual migration in search of salt, created well-worn paths through the dense forests that served as the first roads of early settlers. One such trace passed northwest of the present lake in the vicinity of Cuzco, and terminated at Big Bone Springs, Ky.

The State of Indiana, Department of Natural Resources, operates and maintains the recreation facilities at the lake, except the denoted area operated and maintained by the Corpse at the dam sire area. Additional facilities are under construction as a cooperative effort of the State of Indiana, Department of Natural Resources, and the Corps of Engineers. Information on status may be obtained from State or Corps personnel at the lake.

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