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Rough River Lake

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers formed Rough River Lake in 1955 when they impounded Rough River. The lake, which became operational in 1961, is the main attraction for visitors at Rough River Dam State Resort Park, located across Breckinridge, Hardin, and Grayson counties in south central Kentucky. The 5,100-acre reservoir provides a wide variety of outdoor recreational opportunities. Today, the Corps, in partnership with the Commonwealth of Kentucky, manages the land and water for wildlife, fisheries, and recreation.


Rough River Lake provides anglers with great bass fishing, including largemouth, smallmouth and hybrid striped bass. An average of eleven bass tournaments are held on this lake annually, and Rough River Lake consistently ranks in the top five lakes for producing the heaviest average first-place weight of bass caught during a standard eight-hour tournament.

Other popular gamefish in this lake include black and white crappie. A number of fish attractors are established carefully in the lake, and consist mostly of brush and Christmas trees. Those attractors provide great cover and food for crappie environments.


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    Rough River Lake Kentucky Coordinates:
37.6116N -86.4840W
Map It:
Lake Type:
Surface Area:
5,100 acres
Maximum Depth:
80 ft
495 ft
Normal Water Clarity:
3 ft
Major City:


Rough River Lake is easily accessible by boat through several free and fee-paid boat ramps. Most of these ramps are located in Breckinridge and Grayson Counties, including Cave Creek, Laurel Branch, and North Fork ramps.

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Rough River Lake offers lodging and camping at Rough River Lake State Park, located on the east side of the lake south from Hardinsburg in Grayson County. The lodge offers 40 rooms with private patios that overlook the lake. Aviators can fly into the park's airport and camp at the airport air camp. The airport is a 3,200-foot paged and lit strip that includes tie downs.

Other accommodations in the area include hotels, campgrounds, resorts, and B&Bs in Grayson, Hardin, and Breckinridge Counties.

Review the Lake Resource Guide for additional lodging.


Rough River Lake extends into Breckinridge, Hardin, and Grayson Counties in south central Kentucky. The lake is located about 95 miles southwest from Louisville, and is situation between Hardinsburg to the north and Leitchfield to the south. Visitors to this area also have easy access to Bowling Green and to Mammoth Cave National Park.

Fun times at Rough River Lake  Rough River Lake

  Rough River Lake   Rough River Lake

Average Temperatures Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Avg. High  42 Avg. High  47 Avg. High  57 Avg. High  69 Avg. High  77 Avg. High  86 Avg. High  89 Avg. High  89 Avg. High  82 Avg. High  70 Avg. High  58 Avg. High  46
Avg. Low  23 Avg. Low  25 Avg. Low  33 Avg. Low  42 Avg. Low  51 Avg. Low  60 Avg. Low  64 Avg. Low  63 Avg. Low  55 Avg. Low  43 Avg. Low  35 Avg. Low  26