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Lake Keowee Fishing


Lots of fish swim in the clear waters of Lake Keowee. Originally the lake primarily held largemouth bass, crappie, and catfish. However, many years ago, some anglers made an unauthorized introduction of spotted bass, and that upset the ecological balance of the lake. The largemouth and crappie fishery declined, and now 9 out 10 bass caught in

Lake Keowee are spotted bass. Nice largemouth and crappie are still caught, as are the rare smallmouth and white bass. There are no striped bass in Lake Keowee.


The spotted bass are very aggressive and pound for pound are more sporty to catch than largemouth, but spotted bass don’t grow as large as largemouth ... it’s rare to catch a spotted bass in excess of 4 lb. However, spotted bass population is large, and they taste great.

That said, many have found catching bass on Lake Keowee a humbling experience. Most anglers experienced in other bodies of water look for bass around weed beds where baitfish like to hide, but Lake Keowee has no weed beds. Here the baitfish tend to suspend out in the middle of lake or hide in the rocks or fallen trees along the shore. In addition, the clear lake water allows the fish to see you coming, so stealth and the ability to make long casts are critical skills.

Successful anglers on this lake find bass using knowledge of the bottom contours of the lake, the shoreline structure, the temperature variations in different parts of the lake, and the daily and seasonal migration patterns of the bass.

For newcomers, one way to acquire the knowledge and skills that work to catch bass on Lake Keowee is participate in the activities of the Keowee Anglers, an organization dedicated to sharing the knowledge and skills of experienced Lake Keowee anglers. For more information about this organization, go to their website at: 

To purchase fishing license, click here:

Lake Keowee Boating

Lake Keowee was created by Duke Energy to provide power to the Carolinas and recreation for residents and visitors. Because Duke Energy keeps the water level within a specific range, Lake Keowee is ideal for boating year year round. 


The clean, pristine, blue waters offer a lovely background for boating of all kinds: kayaking, canoeing, paddleboarding, pontoons, and speed boats. There is room for everyone and boating courtesy is a must. If you encounter unsafe boating while on the lake, please call the DNR 24-Hour Hotline at

800 922-5431 to report the problem.


South Carolina Boating Regulations are enforced on the lake by both the DNR and local law enforcement. For current boating regulations, click here


There are numerous public boat ramps on Lake Keowee and visitors are encouraged to check their boats prior to entering the water in order to make sure no foreign plant material is introduced to the lake.

To renew your watercraft registration, click here.


To learn more about boating safety click here.

To obtain a boating license for those under 16 and all boater education click here.

And Remember, no open fires are allowed on any Lake Keowee Islands or Duke Energy access areas. If you see open fires, please report them to the DNR.

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