Lake Gaston, North Carolina & Virginia, USA

Welcome to the ultimate guide to Lake Gaston — things to do, where to stay, fun facts, history, stats and more. Let’s dive in!

Topics we cover in this article:

Looking for Lake Gaston cabins or other accommodations? Save time and use this interactive map to find, compare and book at the best rates. Or explore our comprehensive list of favorite travel partners.

All About Lake Gaston

Lake Gaston covers 20,300 acres along 34 miles of Virginia and North Carolina real estate. The lake was created in 1963 by the Virginia Electric and Power Company (now Dominion Virginia Power) to generate hydroelectric power. Three lakes were created by dams on the Roanoke River. Lake Gaston is in the middle of the chain. Waters from Kerr Lake Dam, at elevation 300 feet above sea level, flow into Lake Gaston which has a full pond elevation of 200 feet above sea level. Waters from Lake Gaston Dam flow downstream into smaller Roanoke Rapids Lake at normal full pond elevation of 132 feet above sea level. Because regulations permit water level fluctuations of only one foot plus or minus from normal level, Lake Gaston enjoys relatively constant water levels with an average depth of 40 feet.

The Lake Gaston community straddles two Virginia counties (Brunswick and Mecklenburg) and three North Carolina counties (Halifax, Northampton and Warren) with Interstate 85 to the west and Interstate 95 to the east. The lake population is a diverse mix of vacation homeowners and retirees, with about one-half of the population full-time residents. The lake attracts visitors and transplants alike with its sparkling blue waters, relaxed lake lifestyle, and convenient location.

Hydrilla, an invasive aquatic plant, was introduced into Lake Gaston in the mid-1980’s from boat trailers and motor propellers. In its efforts to stop the spread of hydrilla, the community treats the lake with herbicide applications and grass carp, a plant-eating fish with a preference for the weed.

Water enthusiasts love Lake Gaston with its 350 miles of shoreline to explore, seemingly endless acreage, and emerald green backdrop. In addition to the 34-mile long main channel, 20 smaller coves run north-south off the main channel. If you love boating, you’ll feel right at home watching pontoon boats leisurely cruising the lake, jet skis enjoying a quick romp, power boats speeding across the reservoir, and water skiers, tubers, wake boarders whipping along behind boats. Sailboats, too, drift along, waiting to catch the perfect wind; sailboats pepper the lake’s shoreline. Launch from any of the public boat ramps or marinas that dot the shoreline, and prepare for a day of prime lake enjoyment.

Anglers love Lake Gaston for the largemouth bass, striped bass, and black crappie caught here. Other species found in the lake include walleye, chain pickerel, white perch, catfish, and bluegill. The fishing is above average, a fact supported by the several annual fishing tournaments held on the lake. But whether you’re a hobbyist or tournament-oriented angler, keep in mind that a fishing license is required for those over 15 in both North Carolina and Virginia. Anglers can use either a Virginia or North Carolina fishing license on either side of the state line.

Outdoor activities don’t stop in the lake, though, as Lake Gaston is surrounded by beautiful spots. Campers flock to Americamps Lake Gaston, located on the Virginia side of the lake. The campground offers sites with water and electric hookups, some waterfront, as well as rental campers and rustic sleeping quarters that include air conditioning and a small refrigerator. Americamps is a perfect jumping-off point for nature hiking, bird watching, and animal watching, as it enjoys a prime wooded location. As you explore hardwood forests, keep your eyes open for swallows, robins, and the occasional owl, and watch as squirrels scavenge for acorns, chipmunks scurry up nearby trees, and white-tail deer prance through the forest. Here at Lake Gaston, all of nature will be your front door.

Though the reservoir is man-made, nature surrounds the lake. Whether you’re looking for a vacation getaway or a permanent relocation, Lake Gaston is rich in convenience, rustic charm, and recreation.

Things to Do at Lake Gaston

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Fishing Tournaments
  • Boating
  • Sailing
  • Jet Skiing
  • Water Skiing
  • Wakeboarding
  • Camping
  • Campground
  • Hiking
  • Wildlife Viewing
  • Birding

Fish Species Found at Lake Gaston

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Black Crappie
  • Bluegill
  • Carp
  • Catfish
  • Chain Pickerel
  • Crappie
  • Grass Carp
  • Largemouth Bass
  • Perch
  • Pickerel
  • Pike
  • Striped Bass
  • Sunfish
  • Walleye
  • White Perch
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Find Places to Stay at Lake Gaston

If you’re considering a Lake Gaston lake house rental or hotel, we’ve made it super easy to find the best rates and compare vacation accommodations at a glance. Save time using this interactive map below.

Recommended Sites to Book a Lake Gaston Vacation

If you want to take a deeper dive to find waterfront lake cabins, cottages, condos, hotels or resorts, check out our favorite Lake Gaston lodging partners.

  • VRBO – Use VRBO to find the perfect lake rental home, condo, cabin, cottage or other vacation property.
  • Booking.com – One of the world’s leading digital travel companies, Booking.com connects travelers to everything from cozy B&Bs to luxury resorts.
  • Expedia – Expedia is a popular online travel agency with more than 140,000 lodging properties worldwide.
  • Hotels.com – With more than 325,000 hotels in 19,000-plus locations, Hotels.com is an industry leader in online accommodations.
  • TripAdvisor – Read traveler reviews and compare prices on hotels, vacation rentals and more at TripAdvisor.
  • Trivago – Trivago helps travelers compare deals for hotels and other accommodations from a variety of booking sites.
  • KAYAK – KAYAK scours hundreds of other travel websites at once to find the best deals on hotels and other travel-related services.
  • RVshare –RVshare connects travelers interested in renting a motorhome with owners who have RVs to rent.
  • CampSpot – Campspot offers premier RV resorts, family campgrounds, cabins and glamping options across North America.
ALL TRAVEL RESOURCES

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.

Lake Gaston Statistics & Helpful Links

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