Home > Missions > Recreation > West Virginia > Bluestone Lake

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Bluestone Dam and Lake are easily accessible from I-77 and I-64. Take exit 14 (Athens Road) off I-77 to Route 20 N, approximately 25 miles to Bluestone Dam. Take exit 139 (Sandstone/Hinton) off I-64 to Route 20 S, approximately 12 miles to Bluestone Dam. The dam is located at Hinton, WV. The project office is accessed on the Bellepoint side via Rt. 3 onto Miller Avenue.

Mailing Address:
Bluestone Lake
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
701 Miller Ave
Hinton, WV 25951

Contact: Project Manager 304-466-1234. Bluestone Dam, 701 Miller Avenue, Hinton, WV 25951. Call 304-466-0156 for a 24 hour recording providing updated lake and stream information.


General Information

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General Information

Bluestone Dam spans the New River at Hinton, WV forming Bluestone Lake, the third largest lake in West Virginia. At summer pool Bluestone Lake covers 2,040 acres and is 10.7 miles long. Bluestone Dam was constructed as part of the Kanawha River Basin flood control system primarily to reduce major flood damages along the New, Kanawha, Ohio, and Mississippi Rivers. Bluestone Dam was completed for operational purposes in January 1949 and completely finished in January 1952. Total construction cost of this concrete gravity dam, 165 ft. high and 2,048 ft. long, was approximately $30,000,000 including land acquisition.  Bluestone Dam has prevented over 2.1 billion dollars worth of flood damage from occurring.  Bluestone Dam has the largest drainage area, 4,565 square miles, of any dam in West Virginia. The New River begins at Blowing Rock, North Carolina and flows north through Virginia into West Virginia. The New River is the oldest river in North America and partially follows the path of the prehistoric Teays River. Below Bluestone Dam, visitors can enjoy a day use area which provides fishermen access, a fishing pier, a playground, restroom facilities, picnicking, parking, and scenic views. Restrooms are also available on the areas operated by Bluestone State Park.  Pit toilets are available on the Bluestone Lake Wildlife Management Area. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers welcomes you and your family to this vital flood control and recreation development project. Come and enjoy the natural scenic beauty of southeastern West Virginia and the recreational facilities at Bluestone Lake.

Historical Info

There are a total of 103 archaeological sites located on federal property within the boundaries of the Bluestone Lake project. This includes 55 prehistoric open habitation sites, 4 prehistoric hamlets, 4 historic military fort sites , 8 historic residential sites, 10 historic industrial sites and 2 sites of reported historic use. Collecting artifacts is prohibited and is punishable by fine and imprisonment.



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Bicycles are permitted on main roads, day use areas and campground areas. Many of the roads leading to Wildlife Management area campgrounds are dirt roads which provide an experience similar to off-road bicycling. Under West Virginia law, all riders under the age of 12 years MUST wear a protective helmet.



With a 2,040-acre surface area, Bluestone Lake provides boaters, skiers, and fishermen with great recreation opportunities. There are no boat motor size restrictions on Bluestone Lake. Check a project map for the location of mud flats on Bluestone Lake. Mud flats on the lake are also marked with channel buoys. Launch ramps are located at Bluestone Bridge, Bluestone State Park, Bluestone Marina, Bull Falls, and Bertha. Some of these launch ramps are not suitable for larger boats. Check with project personnel for the location of launch ramps suitable for launching your boat. A boat slide ramp is located below Bluestone Dam in the Bellepoint Day Use Area for Jon boats, canoes and similar small boats. All persons born after December 31, 1986 must complete a boating education course before operating a motorboat or Personal Water Craft in West Virginia. The Boat U.S. Boating Certificate is recognized by West Virginia and the Coast Guard. Please visit http://www.boatus.org/ to take the free online course.



Camping at Bluestone Lake is restricted to developed camping areas only - there is no random camping. No Federally operated campgrounds are available at Bluestone Lake. America the Beautiful Senior and Access Passes are not accepted. Meador and Old Mill Campgrounds are located at Bluestone State Park (304-466-2805). These are class A campgrounds. Bull Falls, Shanklin's Ferry, Cedar Branch, Mouth of Indian Creek, Indian Creek, Bertha and Barton Ridge Campgrounds are primitive campgrounds located on the Bluestone Lake Wildlife Management Area (304-466-3398).



Project Manager (304) 466-1234. Bluestone Dam, 701 Miller Avenue, Hinton, WV 25951. Call (304) 466-0156 for a 24 hour recording providing updated lake and stream information. Bluestone State Park can be reached at (304) 466-2805; Bluestone State Park, HC 78, Box 3, Hinton, WV 25951 or on the Internet @ http://www.bluestonesp.com/. Bluestone WMA can be reached at (304) 466-3398; Bluestone WMA, HC 65, Box 91, Indian Mills, WV 24949 or on the Internet @  http://www.bluestonewma.com/. 



The New River is the best warm water fishery in West Virginia. Year after year, New River produces more citation game fish than any other warm water river in West Virginia. State fishing records have been recorded in the New River for smallmouth, white and striped bass. Bass (black, smallmouth, largemouth, rock, spotted, striped, hybrid striped and white), bluegill, catfish, crappie and muskellunge are all common species of fish found in the New River and Bluestone Lake. The State of West Virginia periodically stocks Indian Creek, which flows into New River above Bluestone Lake, with trout. West Virginia fishing licenses are required.


Handicapped Access

Universally Accessible Facilities are provided at the dam and downstream day use areas. Bluestone State Park and Bluestone Wildlife Management Area operated by West Virginia Division of Natural Resources provide universally accessible campsites. Bluestone State Park also provides universally accessible cabins.



Foot trails (hiking) are located at Bluestone State Park and Bluestone Lake Wildlife Management Area.


Horseback Riding

Horseback riding is permitted at Bluestone Lake Wildlife Management Areas. Pipestem State Park located 12 miles south of Bluestone Dam on Route 20 is the nearest location for rental of horseback riding.



Approximately 20,000 acres of federally owned land is leased to the State of West Virginia for the purposes of forest, fish, and wildlife conservation. Bluestone Lake Wildlife Management is noted for being one of the most popular public hunting areas in West Virginia. A good turkey, white tail deer, and variety of small game populations provide our visitors with excellent hunting opportunities.



Bluestone Lake's marina is located approximately 3 miles south of the dam along Route 20. The marina is a private business operated under a concessionaire agreement with Bluestone State Park. The marina provides docking facilities, boat rentals, fuel, fishing supplies, bait and snacks. Bluestone Lake Marina can be reached at (304) 466-1010 and www.bluestonelakemarina.com.


A picnic shelter is located downstream of Bluestone Dam at the Bellepoint day use area. The shelter is available on a first come - first served basis EXCEPT WHEN RESERVED IN ADVANCE (a fee of $50 is required for reserving a shelter). The picnic shelter may be reserved by calling the National Recreation Reservation Service at (877) 444-6777 toll free or visiting their website at www.Recreation.gov. You may reserve the shelter up to 360 days in advance to the arrival date.  There are also picnic tables at the day use area.  A picnic shelter is also available at Bluestone State Park.