Talsperre Zeulenroda, Thuringia, Germany

Lake Locations:

Germany - Thuringia -

Also known as:  Lake Zeulenroda, Zeulenroda Dam

Lake Zeulenroda’s idyllic mountain landscapes lend it an aura of profound peace and tranquility. Also known as Zeulenroda Dam, this immensely popular reservoir is located in Germany’s Thuringia region. It is the second dam constructed along the Weida River (the first is Talsperre Weida) near the town of Wieda. Zeulenroda dam has two main functions: to prevent flooding and to serve as a pre-storage drinking water basin for surrounding towns. Built between 1968 and 1975, Talsperre Zeulenroda wasn’t officially opened until 1977. The construction features a biological mechanism for water purification. The narrow lake stretches about 3.4 miles long with irregular branches along its perimeter.

Zeulenroda Dam boasts a surface area of 563 acres and a maximum depth of 98 feet. Carp fishing reigns supreme at this freshwater lake, with specimens commonly weighing up to 62 lbs. Another common species is pike (which weigh up to 26 lbs), as well as perch, eel, trout and whitefish. Ice fishing is possible during the winter, mostly at depths of 60-65 feet. Fishing licenses are required.

There are plenty of recreational opportunities to be enjoyed at Talsperre Zeulenroda, such as boating, sailing and swimming. Land activities around Zeulenroda Dam include bird and animal watching, Nordic walking, and bike riding. Rock climbing is also available for lovers of heights.

Talsperre Zeulenroda is part of the Weida-Zeulenroda water basin, a fertile crop-growing area for winter wheat, winter rape, peas, maize, and fallow. Here you’ll also find vast forests, endless rolling hills speckled with grazing livestock, and the nearby city of Zeulenroda. This town’s center contains a statue of the ‘carp whistler,’ a hero from local folklore that managed to rescue the town from being unfairly taxed by an oppressor. There is also a small museum of artifacts from as far back as 1750, when the town really came into its own as a significant German marketplace.

A great day trip from Talsperre Zeulenroda is Hainich National Park, 39,537 acres bursting with impressive forests and ancient myths (like the cave of Barbarossa in the Kyffhauser hills). Germany’s 13th national park, Hainich was previously used as a WWII tank training ground – but is now proud to provide a sustainable habitat for 47 types of mammals (including wild cats), 188 species of birds, 2,050 types of beetles and 1,650 kinds of mushrooms.

Hiking is a wonderful way to pass a sunny afternoon at Talsperre Zeulenroda, particularly along the Talsperrenweg Zeulenroda trail, which makes a large circle around the reservoir. Other paths of varying lengths are also perfect for Nordic walking. The Wanderbares Deutschland stretches for 15.5 miles along the entire Zeulenroda reservoir. It begins at the Seehotel Zeulenroda parking lot, and winds through the Weida River valley and over an ancient bridge at the Sichelmuhle mill. From there the trail leads to the Schone Aussicht lookout area, and then to the Riedelmuhle auxiliary dam. Also nearby is the Rennsteig trail, the most popular high-altitude journey in the country.

Various vacation homes, real estate properties and holiday houses are available for purchase and for rent around Talsperre Zeulenroda. Some are right on the waterfront, and boast inviting terraces, hot tubs and satellite television. Other holiday cottages are nestled in the hillsides, with unbelievable lakeside views, tasteful decor, and eloquent swimming pools.

With so much to see and do at Talsperre Zeulenroda, it comes as no surprise that the lake has attracted a great deal of foreign tourism to Germany. There is no better place to discover this country’s outdoor splendor than through one of its most treasured reservoirs: Lake Zeulenroda.

Things to do at Talsperre Zeulenroda

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Ice Fishing
  • Boating
  • Sailing
  • Swimming
  • Swimming Pool
  • Hiking
  • Rock Climbing
  • Birding
  • National Park
  • Museum

Fish species found at Talsperre Zeulenroda

  • Carp
  • Eel
  • Perch
  • Pike
  • Trout
  • Whitefish

Talsperre Zeulenroda Photo Gallery

Talsperre Zeulenroda Statistics & Helpful Links

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Lake Type: Artificial Reservoir, Dammed

Water Level Control: Thuringian Reservoir Administration (TTV)

Surface Area: 563 acres

Maximum Depth: 98 feet

Completion Year: 1977

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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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