Lake Seed, Georgia, USA

Lake Locations:

USA - South - Georgia - Northeast Georgia Mountains -

Also known as:  Seed Lake, Lake Nacoochee

If you’re looking for the perfect spot for a getaway vacation in the Northeast Georgia Mountain region, you need look no farther than Lake Seed. It’s all here: beautiful mountain vistas, early frontier history, whitewater adventures and quiet Lake Seed for fishing, watersports and lakefront living. The middle lake of three large impoundments created along the Tallulah River by Georgia Power, Lake Seed – also called Seed Lake, is often overlooked in favor of larger and better-known Lake Burton and Lake Rabun. All three lakes, along with other small lakes along the Tallulah River, provide peak hydroelectric power for the Northern and Central Georgia region.

Nestled among the southern reaches of the Blue Ridge Mountains, the Lake Seed area in Rabun County was created from Cherokee lands by the Georgia Legislature on December 21, 1819. Early settlers were hardy mountain farmers and trappers. The steep hillsides were never conducive to large farming interests but the natural beauty of the land attracted a particular type of adventurous settler who was self-sufficient and appreciated the solitude of the mountain hideaway. No large cities ever developed here; the county seat is Clayton, incorporated in 1823 and still with a population of only 2000 people. Now, however, the county is well-known as a vacation and retirement haven. The difficult terrain attracts nature-oriented visitors and adventurers. The Appalachian Trail borders the western edge of the county, with the designated ‘Wild and Scenic River’, the Chattooga, running along the eastern edge. On the north is Rabun Bald, a remote, serene mountain peak at 4696 feet high. The south gateway is the Tallulah Gorge carved from the once-roaring river, now dammed, creating a breathtaking canyon. The Chattahoochee National Forest encompasses 149,500 acres within Rabun County, providing a suitable backdrop for all of these natural treasures.

Lake Seed is the smallest of the three main reservoirs on the Tallulah Rivers. Only 240 acres, the long narrow lake boasts 13 miles of shoreline, with many higher-end custom homes. Remaining shoreline is carefully managed by Georgia Power, which allows limited development for leaseholders under strict regulation. A small public boat ramp is located on the northeast shore and boats are limited to 30 feet or less. The scenic shoreline makes Lake Seed a favorite among canoe and kayak fans, while those lucky enough to live here enjoy their pontoons, paddleboats, sailboats and pleasure boats. Fishing is a popular activity year round, with a healthy population of spotted and largemouth bass, yellow perch, walleye, sunfish and crappie. A variable river current flows through the lake dependent on dam water releases. Current areas are colder water, so most bass are found in the warmer shallows. Several tributary streams into Seed Lake are designated trout streams. A campground along the western shore provides tent camping areas, picnic areas, restrooms, drinking water, and a beach with a swimming area.

Georgia Power has made maximum use of the naturally falling Tallulah River. The Lake Burton Dam forms Lake Burton and a short distance downstream, the Nacoochee Dam forms Lake Seed. Yet farther downstream, Mathis Dam forms Lake Rabun. The mountainous terrain creates a natural gravity-fed system for power production and the surrounding area is well-supplied with spectacular waterfalls such as Upper and Lower Crow Creek Falls, Bad Branch Falls and Minnehaha Falls. The falls are an easy walk within the Chattahoochee National Forest. The Tallulah and Chattooga Rivers are favorites for whitewater rafting and canoeing, with kayakers exploring some of the larger tributary streams. Annual rainfall in this area of the Chattahoochee National Forest exceeds 70 inches and provides for the lush forests and flowering mountain plants, including rare orchids. In late May and June, laurel blooms along creek banks, cliffs and hilltops. Rhododendrons bloom in July and in October, the mountains take on a profusion of fall colors as the leaves turn color. Twenty-nine members of the orchid family are found along with many rare endangered species of plant life. Lake Seed is an ideal spot from which to explore the unusual plant life and to add to the birder’s ‘life list’.

Rabun County is sparsely populated, with land area averaging 22 acres per person. About half of the residents of the county are part-year residents. The reasons for the Lake Seed area’s popularity are many and varied: some come for the authentic antiques still to be found in the area, while others enjoy the opportunities to watch ‘Highlanders’ practice their traditional crafts and to purchase the finished products. The famed Foxfire series of books was created here near Black Rock Mountain State Park; Foxfire Museum can be visited to observe these native Appalachian crafts and take part in folk festivals. Sky Valley, Georgia’s only ski area, is located in Rabun County. The county contains seven sites listed as historical on the National Register of Historic Places, including Hoojah Branch Site archeological mound. Both the Village of Clayton and the tiny town of Tiger are excellent spots from which to explore the surrounding area. And no visit would be complete without a visit to spectacular Tallulah Falls down river from Lake Seed. The series of six falls provides the name for the village of Tallulah Falls. A famed resort town at the beginning of the last century, Tallulah Falls acts as the gateway to 1000 ft Tallulah Gorge and Tallulah Falls State Park. Scenes for the movie, “Deliverance” were shot along the canyon near here.

Near Lake Seed are 21 equestrian-designated trails, a wheelchair-accessible trail, a mountain with a 93-mile view, three golf courses, mountain climbing, white water rafting and mountain biking. For those less inclined to make strenuous hikes, several marked auto trails are available to scenic outlooks and extraordinary natural formations.

Lake Seed is located 90 miles south of Asheville, NC, 83 miles west of Greenville, SC, and 115 miles north of Atlanta. Rabun County calls itself “The County Where Spring Spends The Summer” due to it’s moderate climate. Many of the lakes meet ‘drinking water quality’. It has been rated as the 2nd best county in the country for retirement. And it’s a guaranteed great place to spend a week-end, a vacation or a lifetime.

Bed-and Breakfast lodgings are numerous in the surrounding mountains, and more commercial lodgings are available in most of the larger towns in the area. Private vacation rentals are available on Lake Seed on occasion and real estate is often found with either deeded or leased lake frontage. So, load up the canoe and the binoculars, bring the fishing gear and the camera. Make this crystal-clear lake a part of your future.

Things to do at Lake Seed

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Boating
  • Sailing
  • Swimming
  • Beach
  • Canoeing
  • Kayaking
  • Whitewater Rafting
  • Golf
  • Camping
  • Campground
  • Picnicking
  • Hiking
  • Mountain Climbing
  • Biking
  • Horseback Riding
  • Waterfall
  • Birding
  • State Park
  • National Forest
  • Museum
  • Antiquing

Fish species found at Lake Seed

  • Bass
  • Black Bass
  • Crappie
  • Largemouth Bass
  • Perch
  • Sunfish
  • Trout
  • Walleye
  • Yellow Perch

Lake Seed Photo Gallery

    Lake Seed Statistics & Helpful Links

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    Trophic State | LakeLubbers

    Trophic State measures the level of algae and nutrients in a lake.

    An oligotrophic lake is very clear (blue in color) and does not support much plant or fish life. A hyper-oligotrophic lake is the clearest of all lakes, and is nearly devoid of plants and fish.

    A mesotrophic lake is slightly green and supports a moderate degree of plant and fish life. A lake's most desired trophic state is generally this mid-point - the mesotrophic state.

    A eutrophic lake is somewhat murky and supports a large amount of plant and fish life. A hypereutrophic lake is clouded with algae, plant life, and fish life. A eutrophic or hyper-eutrophic lake can be difficult to navigate by boat - and is often an unpleasant place to swim.

    The use of phosphorus-rich and nitrogen-rich fertilizer on lawns and golf courses surrounding a lake can cause it to become eutrophic or hypereutrophic.


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    Catchment or Drainage Area | LakeLubbers

    This is the surrounding area that drains into a lake, including land, rivers and their tributaries. This is also known as the lake's "catchment basin".

    Small lakes at the highest peaks of mountains have small drainage areas. The world's oceans have the largest drainage areas.


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    Lake-Area Population | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated number of people who live in a house with a view of a lake, plus those who self-describe the lake as their home, for example: "I live at Smith Mountain Lake."


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    Water Residence Time | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated time that it takes for an amount of water equal to the entire volume of a lake to flow out of - or evaporate from - the lake.

    Residence Time can be as short as a few days for fast-flowing small lakes, and can exceed 100 years for slow-flowing large lakes.


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    Completion Year | LakeLubbers

    This is the year that a reservoir was first filled to the reservoir's normal elevation - or the year that a natural lake was first dammed. A large reservoir can take more than a year to fill after its dam is first closed.

    The Grand Anicut in southern India is generally considered the world's oldest dam that still operates. Grand Anicut was constructed in the second century BC. It now impounds an irrigation network that includes roughly one million acres.

    You can find many of the the world's newest reservoirs on LakeLubbers. Many of the world's oldest reservoirs appear on the last page of that list.


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    Water Volume | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated volume of water that a lake contains -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. By this measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal.

    You can find many of the the world's largest lakes (by water volume) on LakeLubbers.

    Water Volume can be measured in acre-feet, in cubic miles, or in cubic kilometers. One acre-foot is the amount of water needed to cover one acre (43,560 square feet) to a depth of one foot. One cubic mile equals 3,379,200 acre-feet. One cubic kilometer equals 810,713 acre-feet.

    1 acre-foot is equal to 325,851 US gallons. Siberia's Lake Baikal contains about 6,276,367,740,000,000 gallons of freshwater - nearly 1 million gallons for every living person on earth.

    The other - and more widely used - measure of a lake's size is the lake's surface acreage. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is North America's Lake Superior.


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    Maximum Depth | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated greatest depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. The world's deepest lake is Siberia's Lake Baikal; that lake's maximum depth is estimated at 5,314 feet.

    You can find many of the the world's deepest lakes on LakeLubbers. If you select the last page of that list, you will find the (maximum depth of) the shallowest lakes in our database.


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    Average Depth | LakeLubbers

    This is the estimated average depth of the water in a lake -- measured at the lake's normal elevation. If the water volume and surface area of a lake are known, an estimate of the lake's average depth can be calculated:

    Water volume ÷ Surface Area = Average Depth

    Example: 1,000,000 acre-feet ÷ 20,000 acres = 50 feet average depth


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    Maximum Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's highest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can occur during flooding. A lake's highest possible maximum elevation is usually the top of the lake's dam or spillway.

    At lakes that include residential development, government regulations usually forbid the construction of homes below a lake's maximum elevation.


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    Minimum Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's lowest water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level, that can be reasonably expected to occur. Low lake levels can occur due to deliberate seasonal draw downs for irrigation or impending snow melt, reduced water inflows, drought and evaporation, residential or commercial water demands, and hydropower generation.

    Some lakes' minimum and maximum elevations are virtually the same. Lakes that generate hydropower may vary by several feet - according to power demand. Lakes whose primary purpose is to prevent flooding can seasonally vary by 100 feet or more.

    When some lakes reach their minimum elevation, their boat ramps may not be long enough to permit boat access - and boats docked on shallow parts of the lake may end up on dry ground. In those cases, kayakers and shore-based anglers may be among the few happy recreational users of the lake.


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    Normal Elevation | LakeLubbers

    This is a lake's normal water level, measured by the lake's surface distance above sea level. For a reservoir, this water level is also known as "full pond" or "full pool".

    You can find many of the world's highest-elevated lakes on LakeLubbers. Lakes with the lowest elevations (known by LakeLubbers) are shown on the final page of that list.


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    Shoreline Length | LakeLubbers

    This is the length of the exterior shoreline around a lake - measured at the lake's normal elevation. The shoreline length can be considerably shorter or longer when lake water levels are lower or higher than normal.

    A lake with many coves has a much longer shoreline than a lake of similar surface area that is nearly circular in shape.

    When known, the shoreline miles that we report in our statistics include only the lake's exterior shoreline, and exclude the shorelines of islands located within a lake's boundaries. In lakes with many islands, those islands' combined shorelines may exceed a lake's exterior shoreline.

    You can find many of the world's longest-shoreline lakes on Lakelubbers.


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    Surface Area | LakeLubbers

    This is the area (acreage, square kilometers, etc.) of the top surface area of a lake - measured at a lake's normal elevation. The surface area can be considerably smaller or larger when lake levels are lower or higher than normal. North America's Lake Superior is the world's largest freshwater lake by this measure.

    The other measure of a lake's size is the lake's water volume. By that measure, the world's largest freshwater lake is Lake Baikal in Siberia.

    You can find many of the world's largest lakes (acres) on Lakelubbers. There is no widely-accepted minimum surface area that defines a lake. What Lakelubbers describes as a lake, you might call a pond. The smallest lake that Lakelubbers currently includes is Hawaii's 2-acre Lake Waiau.


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    Water Level Control | LakeLubbers

    This is the organization that controls water releases or outflows from the lake or reservoir. In the USA, this is often the US Army Corps of Engineers, a power company, a municipal water system, an irrigation district, or a paper manufacturing company. In the case of private or gated lakes, a homeowners' association may be the lake's controlling authority.

    Many lakes cross borders, including North America's Great Lakes. The control of such lakes and their coveted freshwater may be amicably shared - or hotly disputed.

    "Water wars" continue at many lakes as growing populations and crop irrigation needs compete for the freshwater that lakes contain.


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    Lake Type | LakeLubbers

    There are 3 basic types of lakes that are currently included on LakeLubbers. 2 types may be dammed or not dammed, producing 5 classifications.

    - A Reservoir is a man-made freshwater lake that is usually created by damming rivers.

    - A Natural Freshwater Lake occurs naturally - often by glacial activity - and has a salinity of less than 30 parts per thousand. It may be dammed to produce electricity or for other reasons.

    - A Natural Saltwater Lake occurs naturally and has a salinity of more than 30 parts per thousand (ppt). It may be dammed.

    "Brackish" water may be categorized as freshwater or saltwater, depending on its salt content (salinity). Oligohaline water has less than 15 ppt of salt. Mesohaline water has 15-29 ppt. Polyhaline has 30-335 ppt.


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