Catawba River Launches
Catawba River in Gaston County offers approximately 27 miles of flatwater paddling through the North Carolina into Lake Wylie and South Carolina.
The upper section of Lake Wylie (above I-85) is a popular place for flatwater paddling. There are a number of access points which are described above, but also include the U.S. National Whitewater Center in Charlotte and Tailrace Marina in Mount Holly, NC. If you wish to paddle the other sections of the Catawba River Blueway (see "View Connector Trails") you will need car because there are no portage trails.
"Lake Wylie was named after Dr. W. Gil Wylie, who organized the Catawba Power Company, a predecessor of Duke Energy. It is the oldest lake on the Catawba River. The lake was first created in 1904 by a dam near Fort Mill, South Carolina.
The dam was rebuilt in 1924 and the lake's surface expanded to approximately 13,443 acres and 325 miles of shoreline. In addition to supporting Wylie Hydroelectric Station, Lake Wylie also supports Allen Steam Station and Catawba Nuclear Station with cooling water and provides a dependable water supply for Belmont and Rock Hill. Full pond elevation at Lake Wylie is approximately 569.4 feet.
Duke Energy provides six boat access areas (with one leased to Mecklenburg County and one to York County), one bank fishing area and one boat access area below the dam in cooperation with the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission and the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources. Since portions of this lake lie in both North and South Carolina, fishermen are advised to obtain proper licenses." - Duke Energy - Lake Wylie