Shook Branch Beach

Area Status: Open
This area is Open

Shook Branch Recreation Area is located on the southern shore of Watauga Lake in Carter County. This 20-acre site includes a large, grassy area for picnicking, picnic tables with grills, and a designated swimming area in the lake. Some shade is provided by large trees that border grassy areas. The Appalachian Trail (#1) passes through Shook Branch Recreation Area.

At a Glance

Current Conditions: Shook Branch Swim Area is open for the 2021 season.  To safeguard the health of employees and the public, we appreciate your patience and understanding as we all work together to minimize the impacts and spread of COVID-19.  
Operational Hours: Shook Branch Swim Area is open for the 2021 season.  For picnicking, other locations include Watauga Point and The Laurels Picnic Area.   
Area Amenities: Fee charged for some activities,Picnic tables,Toilets,Drinking water,Parking
Fees Fee is $2 per vehicle, per day, or a Cherokee National Forest Pass for $30 per year. Contact the Watauga Ranger District for more information at 423-735-1500.
Open Season: 4/26/2021 - 9/13/2021
Restrictions: Shook Branch is for Day-use only, from sunrise to sunset. No overnight camping. Alcohol is prohibited. No burning plastic or other non-wood products except charcoal in the grills.
Closest Towns: Elizabethton, TN and Hampton, TN
Water: Drinking Water
Restroom: Flush Toilets
Passes: To purchase your Day-Use pass for this location online, click below.  Digital Pass Icon
Operated By: US Forest Service

General Information

Directions: From Elizabethton, take US 19E/321 south for five miles to Hampton. Turn left onto US 321/TN 67 for three miles, then turn left into Shook Branch.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information



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A large grassy area for picnicking or sunbathing, and designated lake swimming area along Watauga Lake, makes for a perfect summer retreat.

No. of SitesThere are 24 picnic tables.

Water Activities

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Picnic tables
Drinking water
Fee charged for some activities

Related Information

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