Description - Managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Lake Seminole project was originally authorized as the Jim Woodruff Lock and Dam Project by the River and Harbor Act of 1946. It was the first of three locks and dams constructed for navigation, hydropower, recreation and related purposes on the Apalachicola, Chattahoochee, and Flint River systems. Construction of this multi-purpose project at a cost of 46.5 million. Electric power generated by the Jim Woodruff Powerhouse serves both homes and industry.
Copyright: US Army Corps of Engineers
Jim Woodfuff Lock & Dam
Lake Seminole borders both Georgia and Florida and has 37,500 acres of water and over 22,000 acres of surrounding land. The area includes 376 miles of shoreline and extends 30 miles up the Chattahoochee River and 35 miles up the Flint River.
Man has occupied the area for at least 10,000 years. Ancient Native Americans once used the region's abundant natural resources. Later native peoples developed highly complex societies based on corn agriculture. They survived well into the period of the European colonization until their eventual decline and removal from the area. Lake Seminole was named for the Seminoles, the last surviving Native Americans who were pushed into Central Florida by American militia under Andrew Jackson after 1825.
- The modern setting of Lake Seminole is due to its unique geological history. The land and water as seen today are the result of millions of years of deposit, uplift and erosion culminating with man's creation of the lake.
Modern climate and sandy, acid soils of the area support a distinctive coastal plain flora dominated by pines, oaks, sweet gum, and cypress. Highland areas are given to pines and wiregrass. Rivers, streams, sloughs and sinkholes give home to a variety of aquatic plants. This floral diversity fosters a vast abundance of mammal, reptile, amphibian, bird and fish species, both game and non-game.
Lake Seminole recreation areas are in both Georgia and Florida and area easily accessed by well developed roads. Overnight visitors to Lake Seminole can find accommodations at a number of Corps and private campgrounds as well as two state parks (Three Rivers and Torreya). Camping fees vary per area. The Corps-operated campsites are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Lake Seminole is known nationally as one of the best sites for sports fishing in America. Extensive stump and grass beds provide abundant cover where anglers battle largemouth, scrappy hybrid, striped and white bass. Sizeable populations of catfish, crappie and bream are also present. In all, over 79 species of fish have been identified. The area is a paradise for those who enjoy watching wildlife. It is a winter sanctuary for migrating birds. The surrounding marshlands provide habitat for many waterfowls while the woodlands support many fur-bearing creatures. Hunting is allowed on all Corps managed lands and waters. Fishing and hunting regulation booklets are available free of charge at the Resource Management Office and area stores.
Recreation - Lake Seminole offers a variety of outdoor recreational opportunities. Boating is thoroughly enjoyed year-round. A number of regulations apply including exercising caution when commercial barge traffic is near. Boaters should also stay alert to the numerous underwater obstructions at the lake. Water-skiing is enjoyed at one's own risk. Swimmers are asked to use designated beaches and avoid boat channels, launching ramps and docks. Lake Seminole is a public recreation site with posted rules and regulations. Group tours can be arranged by contacting the Resource Management Office of the Jim Woodruff Powerhouse. Interpretive media at the Lake Seminole Visitor Center located at the Resource Management Office provides more information on the physical, biological, and cultural characteristics of the project area.
During the current drought situation (Spring 2001), users should take extra precaution and assess local conditions upon arrival to be extra safe.
Climate - The panhandle area of Florida experiences mild, comfortable winters and warm to hot, humid summers. The average summer temperatures reach well above 83 degrees Fahrenheit (above 29 Celsius). Winters are mild with temperatures averaging below 52 degrees Fahrenheit (below 11 Celsius). The average precipitation for the panhandle area is more than 60 inches per year. August and September are peak months of the hurricane season that lasts from June 1 through November 30.
Lake Seminole is located in northwestern Florida extending into the state of Georgia. It lies between the towns of Bainbridge of the east, Marianna on the west, and Chattahoochee on the south.