The Lake Tenkiller Ferry Dam is named for the Cherokee family from whom the land and ferry were obtained to build the dam. The Tenkillers were prominent Cherokees. It is said the Cherokee warrior was given his name by the white soldiers and pioneers at Ft. Gibson because of the ten notches on this bow.
Lake Tenkiller is Oklahoma's clearwater lake. The 12,500 acres of clear waters, and 130 miles of scenic shoreline with rocky banks and rock bluffs above and below the water provide the environment for the greatest variety of watersports activities and recreational entertainment. The lake provides some the most spectacular underwater scenery of any lake in Texas, Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri or Oklahoma.
The beautiful clear waters of Lake Tenkiller are perfect for all types of boating and skiing activities. Colorful sails grace the horizon on any given day as sailing enthusiasts discover the deep clear water and whispering breezes. Secluded coves provide shelter from powerboat wakes and prevailing winds and are popular anchoring spots for the large yachts and pontoon boats.
The lake has ten marinas and twenty parks managed by the State of Oklahoma or the Corps of Engineers with all levels of campsite facilities available. There are 24 boat launching ramps around the lake for those who bring their own boats. Rental boats of all kinds are available at most marinas. For dining pleasure, there are four floating restaurants ( Pine Cove, Sixshooter, Barnacle Bill's, and Burnt Cabin Marinas) located on different parts of the lake as well as a variety of excellent land-based restaurants - all happy to serve the casually dressed. Visitors can find excellent lodging and dining at the many resorts, motels and restaurants around the lake. There are paved roadways surrounding the lake and into each of the recreational access points as well as a county airport.
From the air, Lake Tenkiller sparkles in the sun, flashing like a giant handful of fiend diamonds strewn within the rippling folds weaving its 34 miles through the wild and rolling hills. The lake was created in the Illinois River basin by the Tulsa District Army Corps of Engineers. Tenkiller is a proud example of how man and nature can combine their talents and beauty to produce a thing of lasting quality for this generation and generations to come.
Fees: Park Permit Required
Location: 8 miles N of I-40 along Hwy 82