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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    noblesville, in

    Default Dale Hollow questions

    Looking for recommendations for a Dale Hollow Trip this summer either late June or July. Two families with 4 adults and 5 kids in total. Would like either one big cabin or two small close to each other and a covered slip. Looks like Sunset Marina, Willow Grove and Star Point are decent options but looking for first hand experience. What ya' got? Wife isn't into a houseboat so that's out.

    Other questions
    Rope swings or cliffs to jump off?
    Any beaches for hang out at for part of a day?
    My oldest loves to fish so any suggestions for best fishing places?

    We'd also do Cumberland so I'd take suggestions for that also.


    2014 Outback V

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Middle TN


    My family used to have a house near eagle cove marina near byrdstown. They have cabin rentals. Very nice area. There is a great area for cliff jumping up the wolf river not far from eagle cove. Sunset marina is also fairly close with a resturant and I think they have rentals as well but not 100% on that
    '18 mojo

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Lexington, KY


    Hi Karl,
    Growing up, Dale Hollow (DHL) was our go-to lake. In the beginning we tent camped, then a camper, then a houseboat. My uncle still has a houseboat at Holley Creek marina on DHL and i get the 3-4 weekends (usually long weekends or week long pilgrimages) each season. Now-a-days we spend more time on Cumberland - pretty much every weekend, so I'd say I'm qualified to speak on both!

    It's a shame that your wife isn't into the houseboat thing (yeah it is kind of like a floating trailer...) because that is THE WAY to do Dale Hollow in my opinion.. There are more an more [private (VRBO) cabins popping up around the lake that are much nicer than what any of the marinas have, but of course you're further from the water and would still have to deal with the marinas to get a slip. I've rented cabins at Eagle's Cove, Holley Creek, and been in the ones at Sulfur Creek. All are good options. I know that Eagle's Cove has a private dock for the cabins, and Sulfur has a dock for the capsites and cabins combined.

    The cliffs in wolf river that Surgical_ass mentioned above are the first go-to spot, and about the only congregating spot on DHL:

    I've heard there is a good spot in Eagle Creek, but I haven't gone looking for it.

    The rope bridge at Pleasant Grove Recreation area is a good destination too:

    If you're a skier, there is a slalom course in Fanny's Creek:

    * Good to-go pizza, ice cream, and what can be only described as "on the water general store" at Willow Grove
    * Sunset is the biggest full service marina, and biggest resturant
    * Mike's landing at Sulfur Creek is probably the biggest "sports bar" atmosphere place to grab a bite - and a great spot to wind down or wind up after a day of boating if you're staying there, just don't tempt the TWRA (TN water patrol) leaving there near dark, they've been hammering people leaving there after too much fun...

    I'm no fisherman - I'm just a guy who likes to fish sometimes. You're probably aware that DHL hold the record for the world record Smallmouth. But that's a 60 year old record. Personally I just like to ride around and "look for good spots to fish" as we call it...

    Since you asked about Cumberland; here is my take on the two:
    Cumberland is more commercial with slightly fewer, but bigger marinas. DHL has more of a step back in time, get away from it all kind of place. Cumberland is significantly deeper and more wide open. You can run about 100 miles of the main channel of Cumberland, where DHL is more like 30. *BUT* DHL boasts WAY more creeks and coves to hide away and do your own thing. In my opinion this difference is what has created the two distinct "cultures" of the lakes. Cumberland you'll see slightly more go-fast boats because there is more room for them to stretch their legs, while DHL you'll see more ski/wake boats because there are more places to "find a spot". While both lakes probably have the same number of houseboats, more stay moored at the marinas on Cumberland, while any given weekend you'll see houseboats out on the lake on DHL. Unfortunately the houseboats heading out are looking for the same spots that us annoying wakeboat-ers want to go make waves, which is what I believable is driving more and more of an anti-wakeboat movement on DHL (big frown). Because of Cumberland's far fewer coves and creeks, more people are more apt to congregate to a few well know areas (76 falls, Harmon Creek, South Fork Party cove). It's not uncommon to be rafted up with dozens of boats on Cumberland, but unheard of on DHL. Last, Cumberland is formed by a much more major river, and with it comes more driftwood in the spring. This year is exceptionally bad. Even DHL is having problems, which i thought I'd never see. DHL will be fine by next weekend, Cumberland will be 4th of July before it's right this year. Both are awesome lakes to visit - I suggest you do both some day. Personally I'd do DHL for a long weekend first. The main reason I'm on Cumberland more is that I can be there in an hour and a half from Lexington. DHL is 3 which turns into a stop and closer to 4 if I'm not the road-trip-nazi. Also, property is easier to own on Cumberland as it was more extensively developed in the 50s. DHL is still heavily farm land.

    Since you have a fisherman in the family, consider taking a day (or just a morning) and riding over to Cumberland (if you're staying on Dale Hollow it will be an hour or so) and get a Striper charter! We did this last year and it's definitely on the yearly "dude trip" agenda now! They stock the Hybrid Striped Bass in Cumberland for some sort of ecological need - I'm an engineer not an ecologist - but man, it's fun fishing, even for the non-fisherman like me! A real guide will put your on 20" fish easily!
    2018 Moomba Craz | Autowake 2.0, Zero-Off, G6 Pumps | Captain Blue/Dark Graphite/Silver Flake | Enzos + Lead

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