J. Strom Thurmond Dam and Lake

Recreation Areas - Visitor Center


Thurmond Lake Office & Visitor Center
510 Clarks Hill Highway.
Clarks Hill, SC 29821

Phone or Toll Free:

Fax: 864-333-1150



For your convenience, the visitor center is open 7 days a week from 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. except for holiday closures, which take place on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day.


From South Carolina – from Aiken, cross over the Savannah River into Georgia on Interstate 20 and take exit 199 Washington Road, turn right onto Furys Ferry Parkway and follow back over the Savannah River where the road turns into SC 28, Continue to US 221 and turn left. The Visitor’s Center is one mile on the right, before J. Strom Thurmond Dam. From Edgefield, take SC 23 until it meets SC 28 (US 221) turn left and follow the road for approximately 6 miles where US 221 turns right. Follow US 221 for 1 mile and the Visitor’s Center is located on the right, before J. Strom Thurmond Dam.

From Georgia – from Augusta, take Washington Road to 28 west/Furys Ferry Parkway and continue to where the road crosses the Savannah River and turns into SC 28, follow for approximately 8 miles and turn left onto US 221 and continue to J. Strom Thurmond Dam.  The Visitor Center is located to the right on the South Carolina side of the dam.


From Atlanta: take Interstate 20 to exit 183 and turn north onto US 221. Follow US 221 to J. Strom Thurmond Dam The Visitor’s Center is located to the left on the South Carolina side of the dam.




  • Brochures, maps, displays, and information about Thurmond Lake, including water safety, wildlife, historical information, local area, and shoreline management.
  • Information Desk
  • Restrooms
  • Drinking Fountain
  • Programs and Tours 


Have a Question? The visitor center has a manned information desk to answer your questions and to assist you in having an enjoyable experience at Thurmond Lake.

You may also want to obtain or purchase:


Clark Hill Park Recreation Area is located one mile up the road from the visitor center. Clarks Hill Park has a variety of facilities such as: picnic tables, reservable picnic shelters, 3 swim beaches, restrooms, drinking water, courtesy dock, fish cleaning station, boat ramp, and is handicap accessible. Pets are allowed in this area as long as they are kept on a six foot leash, and are not allowed on the swim beaches. There is a $5 recreation fee charged at this area.

Bartram Trail. Also located near the office on the Georgia side of the dam (at the entrance to West Dam Recreation Area) is the start of the Bartram Trail. This 9-mile (one-way) trail follows parts of the shoreline and takes detours through the woods to provide an excellent chance to view wildlife and enjoy nature. With entrances also at Lake Springs and Petersburg and two different trail loops located within the Lake Springs Recreation Area, the trail can provide a different route and experience each time. Trail maps are located at every entrance point. So whether you are hiking or mountain biking come and have a great time.


Thurmond Dam and Powerplant. Located approximately one mile south of the visitor center with the entrance road being directly across from the Visitor Center entrance, is the Thurmond Dam and Power Plant. The dam and power plant was built from 1946 – 1954 for the purposes of hydropower, flood control, and downstream navigation. Additional authorized purposes now include recreation, water supply, water quality, and fish and wildlife management. Learn more about Thurmond Dam and Power Plant. The dam and power plant is closed to the general public.  Small group tours for schools, civic organizations, scouts or similar groups may be accommodated Monday through Friday during regular business hours.  Please call 1-800-533-3478 for additional information.

 Below Dam South Carolina Recreation Area. Below Dam South Carolina Recreation Area is located on the Savannah River just below the Thurmond Dam. Follow directions (above) to the Thurmond Dam and Power Plant. As you are approaching the dam and power plant, take a left turn into the Recreation Area. This recreation area includes  reservable shelters, picnic area, fish cleaning station, exercise course, playground, and a boat ramp for access to the Savannah River. Other amenities include restrooms and drinking water.