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Fishing Cherokee Lake

AKA: Cherokee Reservoir

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By AA-Fishing Staff Writers

Cherokee Lake, TN

Popular Fish Species Cherokee Lake, TN

Cherokee Lake Popular Fish - Smallmouth Bass

Smallmouth Bass

Smallmouth bass are a favorite of many locals at Cherokee Lake, and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency give smallies good marks here due to great fisheries management. Fishing for smallmouth bass is good anytime they are shallow - in spring during the spawn, mornings in summer, and during warmer fall afternoons. Use shallow crankbaits around rip rap, and around grass use worms, jigs, topwater and spinnerbaits. In winter, spend your time on deeper structure with small worms, jigs and spoons. Largemouth bass and spotted bass also reside here in good numbers.

Cherokee Lake Popular Fish - Crappie


Fishing for both black and white crappie is popular at Cherokee Lake. Crappie fishing is on the rise and they can be found in sizeable schools, some containing bragging size crappie. Crappie always like cover and structure, so locate brush and vegetation. Using a fish finder can help locate schools of crappie, which tend to stack vertically around cover. Live bait and small jigs are the most common method for crappie here. In spring and fall focus on the 8 to 12 foot range. As the crappie move deep in summer and winter, follow points out deep, as well as find ledges near channels in deeper water.

Cherokee Lake Popular Fish - Hybrid Striped Bass

Hybrid Striped Bass

Hybrid striped bass, also known as wipers, are a favorite of many locals and fishing guides at Cherokee Lake, as they are plentiful and grow to bragging size. As a hybrid of striped bass and white bass, they have great potential for spawning massive numbers and growing to large sizes. Fishing for hybrid stripers is a matter of locating schools of bait, and schools of hybrid striped bass are likely to be in the area. In summer they will usually be around 30 feet deep or less. Fish finders improve your odds of locating both bait and wipers. Live bait is very very effective here, and these chubby fish can be caught year round. Striped bass also can be caught here.

Fish species to fish for...

Guide to fishing for largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, spotted bass, channel catfish, blue catfish, black crappie, white crappie, walleye, bluegill, redear sunfish, rock bass, warmouth, white bass, striped bass, hybrid striped bass, sauger and saugeye at Cherokee Lake in Tennessee.

Wrapped in a green belt of trees and grass, Cherokee Lake is a scenic reservoir with plenty of outdoor and water sport activities. Fishing is especially good at this fertile, 30,000-acre impoundment in the northeast part of the state. Striped bass, walleye, sauger, saugeye, bass, crappie, catfish and sunfish all thrive in these forage infested waters. Whether fishing from shore or from a boat, fish seem to be everywhere along these 390 miles of shoreline, especially in spring. In both hotter and colder months the fish tend to school deeper on the many channels, ledges, points and humps throughout the lake. There are multiple marinas and boat docks offering products and services for boaters and anglers. Plenty of boat launch ramps are distributed around the lake for convenient launching of all types of boats - from canoes and kayaks to larger pleasure and fishing boats.

Cherokee Lake, located in eastern Tennessee, is a prominent fishing destination known for its abundant fish populations and scenic beauty. This expansive reservoir, spanning over 28,000 acres, offers anglers a wide range of fishing opportunities, as well as boating and camping experiences.

Cherokee Lake is renowned for its excellent bass fishing. Largemouth bass and smallmouth bass are the prized catches in the lake, attracting anglers with their size and thrilling fights. The lake's diverse structure, including submerged points, rocky shorelines, and submerged timber, provides ideal habitats for these species. Anglers can employ various techniques such as casting with crankbaits, flipping soft plastics, or working topwater lures to entice these bass. Cherokee Lake's bass fishing reputation draws both recreational anglers and competitive bass tournaments to its waters.

In addition to bass, Cherokee Lake supports healthy populations of other popular fish species. Crappie fishing is excellent, with both black and white crappie providing opportunities for anglers to fill their stringers. Catfish anglers can target channel catfish and flathead catfish, with the lake's deeper channels and structures serving as prime fishing grounds. Other species found in the lake include sauger, walleye, and sunfish, offering anglers a diverse array of fishing options.

Cherokee Lake's combination of excellent fishing, boating opportunities, and camping facilities make it a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts in Tennessee. Whether you're chasing bass, crappie, or catfish, cruising the calm waters on a boat, or enjoying a peaceful camping trip, Cherokee Lake offers a serene and memorable experience for all who visit.

Fishing Boats For Rent In TN

Primary fish species residing in Cherokee Lake

Click images for fishing tips and details about each species.

Largemouth bass Smallmouth bass Spotted bass Channel catfish Blue catfish Black crappie White crappie Walleye Bluegill Redear Sunfish Rock Bass Warmouth Sunfish White Bass Striped bass Hybrid Striped Bass Sauger Saugeye

Cherokee Lake Amenities

Marina: YES
Boat Rental: YES
Boat Launch Ramp: YES
Campgrounds: YES
RV Hookups: YES
Lodging: YES
Convenience Store: NEARBY
Bait & Tackle: YES
Restaurant: YES

Today's Weather & Forecast

Boating is a favorite activity on Cherokee Lake, thanks to its expansive water surface and numerous boat ramps. Anglers can launch their boats and explore the lake's many coves, bays, and channels in search of their preferred fishing spots. Boaters can enjoy leisurely cruises, water sports activities, and the stunning views of the surrounding mountains and forests.

Fishing Boat Rentals

Huff’s German Creek Marina
Rentals: Pontoon boats
865 345-1234

Lakeside Marina
Rentals: Pontoon boats
865 993-5798


Cedar Hill Boat Dock Marina
2369 Boat Dock Rd
Talbott, TN 37877
423 317-7693

Fall Creek Marina & Campground
5656 Fall Creek Dock Rd
Russellville, TN 37860
423 581-4701

Hamblen County Boat Dock Marina
3050 Cherokee Park Rd
Morristown, TN 37814
423 586-2939

Huff’s German Creek Marina
155 Muskogee Ln
Bean Station, TN 37708
865 345-1234

Lakeside Marina
110 Bluff Village Rd
Bean Station, TN 37708
865 993-5798

Public Boat Launch Ramps & Landings

Boat Ramp
This is two, two-lane, concrete ramps with paved parking. It is located mid lake, on the east side of the lake, off Lakeway Road/Kidwell Ridge Road.

Boat Ramp
Located in the northeast sector of the lake, off I-11W, and immediately east of Paradise Cove Campground. This is a nice, two-lane, concrete boat ramp with plenty of paved parking.

County Line Road Boat Launch
Located mid lake, on the northwest side of the lake, it is a primitive gravel ramp and parking.

Doc Mc Fall Road Boat Ramp
Located on the northeast side of the lake, this is two, two-lane, concrete ramp with gravel parking.

Grainger County Park Boat Launch
Located on the southwest side of the lake, off Lakeshore Drive, this is a two-lane, concrete ramp with gravel parking.

Greenlee's Boat Ramp
This is a two-lane, concrete ramp with docks and gravel parking. It is located in the northeast side of the lake.

Hamblen County Boat Dock
Located on the northeast side of the lake, in Cherokee Park, this is a two-lane, concrete ramp with gravel parking.

Oak Grove Boat Launch
This is a one-lane, concrete ramp with limited gravel parking. It is located in the northwest part of the lake, off Oak Grove Road.

State Route 375 Boat Launch
Located mid-lake, on the west side of the lake, this is a one-lane, concrete ramp with gravel parking.

TVA Cherokee Dam Launch
Located in the southwest corner of the lake, at the south end of the dam, this is a two-lane, concrete ramp with a dock and paved parking.

US 11W Boat Launch
Located in the northwest corner of the lake, this is a one-lane, concrete ramp with limited, gravel parking.

Fishing Guides On Cherokee Lake

Cherokee Lake Fishing Charter - striped bass, hybrid stripers

If you offer fishing guide services on this lake, please contact us for a free listing, to be posted here.

Cherokee Lake Fishing Video
Fishing License

Click here for a Tennessee Fishing License.

Camping facilities are available near Cherokee Lake, providing anglers and outdoor enthusiasts with opportunities to extend their stay and immerse themselves in the natural beauty of the area. Campgrounds offer various amenities such as campsites, picnic areas, and restroom facilities. Camping near Cherokee Lake allows visitors to wake up to breathtaking views and easily access the fishing hotspots early in the morning or late in the evening.

Campgrounds & RV Parks Nearby

Card'nal Cove Resort Campground - 865 828-5300

Cherokee Dam Campground - 865 632-3791

Maysprings Campground - 865 828-4802

Everhart Campground - 423 587-3559

Lawson Campground - 423 272-5291

Greenlee Campground RV & Marine - 865 828-4802

Cherokee Park Campground - 423 586-5232

Greenlee Campground, Fallcreek - 423 587-8866

Park Place Lakeside Campground - 423 923-5950

Cherokee Lake, TN Map - Fishing & Camping Areas

Contact Information

Cherokee Lake
Greenlee Campground RV & Marine
375 Lakeshore Drive
Rutledge, TN 37861
865 828-4802


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Cherokee Lake in Tennessee.

Striped bass, walleye, sauger, bass and crappie fishing in northeast TN.

Fishing at Cherokee Lake, in Tennessee.