Burnsville Lake, West Virginia, USA

Also known as:  Burnsville Reservoir

Welcome to the ultimate guide for history, statistics, local fun facts and the best things to do at Burnsville Lake.

If you’re considering Burnsville Lake vacation rentals, we’ve made it super easy to explore accommodations and nearby hotels using the interactive map below. Simply click on a listing to compare similar properties, best rates and availability for your dates. Or keep scrolling to read our Burnsville Lake guide!

Burnsville Lake visitor and community guide

Lake Locations: USA - South - West Virginia - Mountain Lakes -

Beautiful Burnsville Lake was created by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to control flooding along the Little Kanawha River. The Corps began construction of the Burnsville Dam in 1972; the dam became operational in 1978. In addition to flood control, the 968-acre lake provides wildlife management and recreational opportunities such as boating, fishing, camping, cycling, picnicking, and nature watching. The choice is yours.

Boating is one of the most popular activities at Burnsville Lake. Virtually every option is available, as you can rent a jet ski for a fast-paced ride, a pontoon boat for a leisurely cruise, and a canoe for a bit of exercise. Three public boat launches are available. Soon you’ll find that there’s no better way to discover deep blue waters, emerald green shorelines, and a wide variety of flora and fauna than from the very center of it all.

Visitors to the lake who are truly looking to escape for awhile love the area campgrounds. The Riffle Run Campground is located near the dam and marina. This campground offers 60 sites, some with water, sewage, and electric hookups, and others with primitive tent sites. The campground also features restroom facilities and a playground for the younger members of the family. Bulltown Campground features 204 waterfront and wooded campsites with electric hook-ups. This campground also offers restrooms and playgrounds. The Bulltown Recreation Areas offer a swimming beach with restrooms, boat launch ramp, fishing access, picnic shelters, and horseshoe pits. When you make the decision to camp, look forward to nights below the stars, close to waters lapping against the shores, and dinners cooked over an open flame.

Fishing is a favorite Burnsville Lake pastime, and the reservoir is home to bluegill, carp, channel catfish, crappie, flathead catfish, largemouth bass, long-nosed gar, muskellunge, rock bass, sauger, saugeye, smallmouth bass, trout, sunfish, and walleye. Renting a boat is easy; all you need to bring is your bait box and a West Virginia fishing license.

Normal summer pool elevation of Burnsville Lake is 789 feet above sea level. The Corps of Engineers lowers water levels from October through March in anticipation of winter snows and spring rains. The lake’s winter pool elevation is 776 feet above sea level, which reduces the lake’s acreage from 968 acres to 550 acres.

If you’re just aching to get out on the area trails, you have three options: on foot, on bicycle, or on horseback. Several trails snake their way around the lake and through the surrounding forests. Trail maps may be procured at the Burnsville Lake project office; while you’re there, be sure to ask for recommendations about the best trails for your activities.

Burnsville Lake is an area of central West Virginia full of natural beauty and widely varied recreational opportunities. If you’ve been thinking about getting away from your everyday life, you’ll soon come to the same conclusion as all of the lake’s visitors: Burnsville Lake is the perfect place for your outdoorsy desires.

Custom Burnsville Lake house decor

Read our full review of these personalized lake house signs.

Things to do at Burnsville Lake

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Boating
  • Swimming
  • Beach
  • Canoeing
  • Jet Skiing
  • Camping
  • Campground
  • Picnicking
  • Hiking
  • Biking
  • Horseback Riding
  • Wildlife Viewing
  • Playground

Fish species found at Burnsville Lake

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Bluegill
  • Carp
  • Catfish
  • Channel Catfish
  • Crappie
  • Flathead Catfish
  • Gar
  • Largemouth Bass
  • Muskellunge
  • Perch
  • Pike
  • Sauger
  • Saugeye Perch
  • Smallmouth Bass
  • Sunfish
  • Trout
  • Walleye

Best hotels and vacation rentals at Burnsville Lake

The Burnsville Lake map shown above is a simple and stress-free way to search for trip accommodations. But if you want to take a deeper dive to find the ideal waterfront home, cabin, condo, hotel or resort, visit our favorite lodging partners by clicking the buttons below.

Note: These are affiliate links so we may earn a small commission if you book through them. While there is no extra cost to you, it helps provide resources to keep our site running (thank you)! You can read our full disclosure policy here.

Burnsville Lake photo gallery

New photos coming soon!

Burnsville Lake statistics & helpful links


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