The weather was gorgeous last weekend, sunny with the temperature in the sixties. Though it’s not Lake Michigan by any stretch, we decided to head over to the lake, or rather, the J. Percy Priest Reservoir.
I bet I can catch that wave!
Originally named the Stewarts Ferry Reservoir, construction of the project began in 1963. The name was changed to J. Percy Priest in honor of Tennessee Congressman James Percy Priest in 1958. The project was completed in 1968 and was dedicated by President Lyndon Johnson on June 29th. The dam was built to reduce the amount of flooding in the Cumberland Valley.
Constructed from earth, rock, and concrete, it rises one-hundred and thirty feet above the stream bed. The lake covers over fourteen thousand square feet, has two-hundred sixty-five miles of shoreline, and has a watershed area of eight-hundred ninety-two square miles. The maximum capacity is six-hundred fifty-two acre feet of water, but typically contains three-hundred ninety-two thousand acre feet of water. The hydroelectric power plant there generates twenty-eight megawatts of power.
Wow, 28 MW of power!
Five million visitors come to the lake each year to camp, fish, boat, canoe, swim, ski, hike, and ride horses. The construction of the dam caused the decimation of the last known population of the freshwater mussel Epioblasma lenior, which is now extinct. Sorry I can’t share a picture . . .
And for those of you have been following the kitchen saga, this is what I came home to today. Maybe tomorrow I’ll have a functional kitchen again!